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What does Selma mean?

Selma Pronunciation of 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.

2 more alternative forms via Salma: Sahlma and Salmah.

1 masculine form: Anselm.

Creative forms:
(female) Seama, Selna, ..

(male) Selba, Selva, ..

Middle name pairings:
Selma Noemi (S.N.), ..

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)

Selma reached its top position of #187 in the U.S. during the years 1890-1899, but is not ranked at the moment. (Top Baby Names, 2015)

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

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

Which version is better?

with its variant forms and related girl names. Prominent varying forms of Selma are Salma (#797 from recent data), Salome (#1699), Velma and Zelma. Other variants, like Sahlma, are seldom used. These forms of Selma were favored 115 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.

See names
in meaning and etymology.