The English form of the Greek Nikolaos (nikē meaning victory, and laos meaning people) has endured over centuries, particularly because of this guy:
|Vintage Swiss postcard|
courtesy of St. Nicholas Center
Nicholas is most famously the patron saint of Greece, Russia, children, sailors, and prisoners, among a multitude of others. He's a prominent figure of Russian Orthodox liturgy, as prayers are said to him each week. It's been the name of choice for five popes and two czars of Russia.
You may be wondering where the saint got his name to begin with. Like many Greek names, it's ancient and even biblical. Yes, there is a Nicolas briefly mentioned in the New Testament of the Bible (Acts 6:5, to be exact). He may not have been the focus of any important stories, but this reference goes to show you just how old the name is.
To say that Nicholas is a classic name almost feels like an understatement. It's steeped in a rich history, Greek heritage, Christian tradition, and appreciated the world over among many different cultures. This name has been passed down to new generations in one form or another for ages.
Nicholas may have hit a peak in 1999 as the 5th most popular name in the country, but it's always been a classic and has still going strong. It's never been below the 200 mark, and today it sits at 57.
Variations & Nicknames
The most popular nicknames derived from Nicholas are Nick and Cole. But we can dig much deeper than that!
- Nicolas Cage
- Nicholas (Nick) Cannon
- Nicholas Hoult
- Nicholas (Nick) Lachey
- Nicholas Sparks
- Nicholas Santo Pietro, son of Vanna White