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Barbara meaning and name origin
Barbara \b(a)-rba-ra, bar-bara\ as a girl's name is pronounced BAR-bra. It is of Latin origin, and the meaning of Barbara is "foreign woman". The adjective was originally applied to anyone who did not speak Greek; it has the same root as "barbarian". In Roman Catholic custom, Saint Barbara is invoked as a protector against fire and lightning; she is patron saint of architects, stonemasons, and fortifications. Barbra is a spelling variant made familiar by singer/actress/film director Barbra Streisand. Many people may associate the name with the popular doll Barbie, which with Babs, are informal pet forms. Barb is the short form. Actress Barbara Stanwyck; writer Barbara Tuchman; First Lady Barbara Bush.
Barbara has 53 variant forms: Bab, Baba, Babara, Babb, Babbett, Babbette, Babbie, Babe, Babett, Babette, Babita, Babs, Baibin, Barabara, Barb, Barbar, Barbarella, Barbarit, Barbarita, Barbeeleen, Barbel, Barbera, Barbette, Barbey, Barbi, Barbie, Barbora, Barbra, Barbro, Barby, Barra, Basha, Basia, Baubie, Bauby, Beba, Bebe, Berbera, Berberia, Berberya, Berbya, Bibi, Bobbe, Bobbee, Bobbi, Bobbie, Bobby, Bonni, Bonnie, Bonny, Borbala, Varvara and Varina.
For more information, see also related names Barinda, Bunny and Wava.
View a list of the 11 names that reference Barbara.
Popularity of Barbara
Barbara is a very popular first name for women (#4 out of 4276) and also a very popular surname or last name for all people (#11413 out of 88799). (1990 U.S. Census)
Displayed below is the baby names popularity of the name Barbara for girls. (2010 statistics) Compare Barbara with its variant forms and related girl baby names.