Penelope meaning, girlPenelope

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What does Penelope mean?

Penelope \p(e)-nelo-pe, pen(e)-lope\ as a girls' name is pronounced pen-NELL-a-pee. It is of Greek origin, and the meaning of Penelope is "weaver". From "pene". Mythology: Penelope, wife of Odysseus, fended off suitors by weaving during the day and unraveling at night a tapestry she said had to be completed before she would wed another husband. The name has come to signify a loyal, capable, and intelligent woman. The name is also possibly derived from the Greek name "penelops" for a type of duck that was said to have rescued and nurtured Penelope when she was exposed to die as an infant. Model Penelope Tree; parenting expert Penelope Leach; actresses Penelope Ann Miller, Penelope Cruz.


Penelope has 8 variants: Pen, Penelopa, Penina, Penna, Pennelope, Penney, Pennie and Penny.

For more information, see also the related girl name Posy.


Penelope is a very popular first name for women (#771 out of 4276, Top 18%) but a rare surname for both adults and children. (2000 U.S. Census)

Shown below is the birth name popularity of Penelope for girls. Penelope was first listed in 1930-1939 and reached its top rank of #42 in the U.S. in the year 2014. (2014 Birth Statistics)

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

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

Shown below is a comparison of the popularity of the girl name Penelope and related names. Penny (#808 a year ago) and Pennie are the prominent variation forms of Penelope (#42 a year ago) listed in the Top 1000. Adoption of this girl name was at its highest during the years 1950-1959 and has become significantly lower since, with the forms Pennie and Penny becoming less in vogue. Penelope (#42) is the most chic birth name here, with this name enjoying a rekindling in usage. (2014 Birth Statistics)

Top 1000 baby names ranking of Penelope, Pennie, Penny in U.S.

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