What does Gary mean?
Gary \g(a)-ry\ as a boys' name is pronounced GARE-ee. It is of Old English origin, and the meaning of Gary is "spear". Transferred use of a surname, which probably derives from a Norman given name of Germanic origin,a a short form of names starting with gar. American industrialist Elbert H Gary gave his name to the steel town of Gary, Indiana in 1906. The "a" in the town name is pronounced as air, giving rise to the common respelling Garry. The name was made famous since the 1930s due to actor Gary Cooper. It is now also used as a pet form of Gareth and Garfield. Cartoonists Garry Trudeau, Gary Larson; actors Gary Sinise, Gary Oldman.
Gary is a very popular first name for males (#26 out of 1220, Top 2%) and also a very popular last name for all people (#1555 out of 150436, Top 1%). (2000 U.S. Census)
Presented below is the baby name popularity of Gary for boys. Gary reached its peak position of #12 in the U.S. during 1950-1959, and is presently at #560. (Top 1000 Baby Names Records, 2014)
Garfield, Garret, Garrison, Garry, Garth and Gerald (#816 in 2014) are the popular alternative forms of Gary (#560 in 2014). These boy names reached the peak of their popularity during 1940-1949 (usage of 0.466%) and have become much less widespread since (usage 0.0891%, down 80.9%), with versions like Garrison, Garry, Garth, Gary and Gerald becoming somewhat dated. Shown below is an analysis of the popularity of the boy name Gary and related names. (Top 1000 Baby Names Records, 2014)
Gary▼ is pronounced similarly to Gearey, Geary and Guri. Other recommended similar baby names are Cary▼, Gaby, Gaer, Gair, Gard, Garvy, Gay, Gere, Gerry▼, Gery, Gore, Gray, Grey, Gur, Jary and Lary. These names tend to be less commonly used than Gary.