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What does Selma mean?

Selma /sel-ma/ as a girls' name is pronounced SEL-mah. It is of Old German and Arabic origin, and the meaning of Selma is "helmet of God; safe". Feminine short form of Anselma; variant of Salma. Actress Selma Blair.

Associated with: arabic, helmet (defender)


Selma has 6 variants: Anselma, Salma, Sellma, Selmah, Zelma and Zelmah.

Related girl names: Velma and Salome.

Selma has 2 more alternative forms via Salma: Sahlma and Salmah.

Selma has 1 masculine form: Anselm.

Kreatif forms:
(female) Selmi, Selsa, ..

(male) Selba, Selva, ..

How popular is Selma?

Selma is a very popular first name for women (#691 out of 4276, Top 16%) and a slightly less popular surname for all people (#108734 out of 150436, Top 72%). (2000 U.S. Demographics)


Ranking and usage % can show different trends depending on the distribution of names that year.

Shown below is the birth name popularity of Selma for girls. Selma reached its top position of #187 in the U.S. during the years 1890-1899, and is presently at #1866. (Top Baby Names, 2014)

Top 2000 baby names ranking of Selma name in U.S.

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

Prominent varying forms of Selma (#1866 from recent data) are Salma (#878 from recent data), Salome (#1970), Velma and Zelma. Other variants, like Sahlma, are seldom used. These forms of Selma were favored 114 years ago (adoption of 0.3%) and have become significantly less widespread since, with versions like Zelma becoming less trendy. Salma has historically been preferred by parents.

Top 2000 baby names ranking of Selma, Salma, Salome, Velma, Zelma in U.S.

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

Similar Names


Selma is pronounced similarly to Zulma. Other recommended names are Adelma, Allma, Alma, Dalma, Delma, Desma, Ellma, Elma, Gemma, Halma, Helima, Helma, Hema, Herma, Hilma, Jemma, Neema, Neima, Neoma, Palma, Peloma, Salama, Salima, Saloma, Samma, Seana, Seara, Sebra, Seelia, Seema, Seemah, Seila, Sela, Selbea (see Selby), Selby, Selda, Selena, Selia, Selie, Selima, Selimah, Selina, Selyna, Sena, Senga, Senoma (see Sonoma), Sera, Seula, Shela, Shelia, Shella, Silia, Silja, Silva, Silya, Sima, Soloma, Soma, Stela, Stella, Sula, Sylva, Syma, Talma, Telma, Thelma, Valma, Vehlma (see Velma), Vellma, Vilma, Wilma, Wylma and Zelima. These names tend to be less frequently used than Selma.