Karen meaning, girlKaren

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What does Karen mean?

Karen \k(a)-ren\ as a girls' name is pronounced KARE-en. It is of Danish origin. Short form of Katherine (Greek) "pure". See also Caryn, Karina, and Keren. Writer Karen Blixen; singer Karen Carpenter; actress Karen Allen.


Karen has 29 variants: Caren, Carin, Caron, Caronn, Carren, Carrin, Carron, Carryn, Caryn, Carynn, Carynne, Karan, Kari, Karin, Karna, Karon, Karren, Karrin, Karryn, Karyn, Kerran, Kerrin, Kerron, Kerrynn, Keryn, Kerynne, Taran, Taren and Taryn.

For more on this name, see also related girl names Careen, Carina, Kalina and Catherine.

Karen has 18 more related variations via Caryn, Karina, Katherine, Keren: Kareen, Kareena, Kareina, Karena, Karenah, Karene, Karine, Karri, Karyna, Karynn, Kate, Katee, Katena, Katey, Katrena, Katrien, Kaye and Kerena.


Karen is a very prominent first name for women (#13 out of 4276, Top 1%) and also a very prominent surname for all people (#35496 out of 88799, Top 40%). (2000 U.S. Census)

Charted below is the birth name popularity of Karen for girls. Karen reached its apex position of #3 in the U.S. during 1960-1969, and is at #492 currently. (2014 Birth Statistics)

Top 1000 baby names ranking of Karen name in U.S.

Top 100 baby names ranking of Karen outside U.S.

Katherine (#83 the previous year), Catherine (#170), Kate (#207), Karina (#429), Taryn (#853), Karren, Karri, Karyn, Kaye, Karin, Caron, Carina, Caryn, Karan, Caren, Kari and Karon are the prominent variation forms of Karen (#492 the previous year) rated in the Top 1000. These girl names were at the height of their popularity during 1970-1979 and are now much less widespread, with versions such as Taryn, Karen, Carina, Karyn and Kaye becoming somewhat outmoded. Kate (#207) and Karina (#429) are two of the more fashionable birth names in this compilation, and there is also a rebound in birth name usage for Kate. Below is a charted analysis of the usage of Karen and corresponding names. (2014 Birth Statistics)

Top 1000 baby names ranking of Caren, Carina, Caron, Caryn, Catherine, Karan, Karen, Kari, Karin, Karina in U.S.

Top 1000 baby names ranking of Karon, Karren, Karri, Karyn, Kate, Katherine, Kaye, Taryn in U.S.

Top 100 baby names ranking of Catherine, Karen, Karin, Kate, Katherine outside U.S.

Similar Names

Karen is alike in pronunciation to Carwen, Coren, Karyne, Kerin, Koreen, Koren, Korin, Koryn and Kyrene. Other suggested similar baby names are Faren, Kalen, Kamren, Karee, Karel, Karenna, Karlen, Karma, Karmen, Karrena, Korena, Laren and Maren. These names tend to be less commonly used than Karen.