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What does Leo mean?

Leo Pronunciation of Leo [leo] as a boys' name is pronounced LEE-oh. It is of Latin origin, and the meaning of Leo is "lion". A common name in Roman times, and the name of 13 popes, including Leo the Great (fifth century), who successfully dealt with Attila the Hun when the Vandals conquered Rome. Author Leo Tolstoy; actor Leo G. Carroll.

Associated with: lion, roman, great.


Leo has 9 variants: Lee, Leon, Leoncio, Leonel, Leonello, Leontios, Lev, Lion and Lyon.

Affiliated boy names: Leomaris, Leander, Leonard and Leopold.

1 feminine form: Leanna.

Creative forms:
(male) Lle, ll, ..

(female) Leve, Lle, ..

Middle name pairings:
Leo Liam (L.L.), ..

How popular is Leo?

Leo is a very prominent first name for males (#168 out of 1220, Top 14%) and also a very prominent surname for both adults and children (#4296 out of 150436, Top 3%). (2000 U.S. Census)

Leo reached its apex position of #43 in the U.S. in the 1890s, and is at #91 presently. (Top Baby Names, 2015)

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

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

Which version is better?

with its variant forms and related boy names. Leander (#1979 from current records), Lee (#679), Leon (#314), Leonard (#653), Leonel (#389), Leopold (#1693) and Lev (#1298) are the prominent related forms of Leo (#91 from current records). These forms of Leo were favored by parents during the years 1900-1909 (adoption of 1.4%) and are now much less widespread (adoption 0.4%, down 71.3%), with versions such as Leonard becoming less fashionable. Leonel is the most contemporarily stylish boy name here.

Top 2000 baby names ranking of Leo, Leander, Lee, Leon, Leonard in U.S.

Top 2000 baby names ranking of Leonel, Leopold, Lev in U.S.

Top 100 baby names ranking of Leo, Lee, Leon outside U.S.

Similar Names

Leo is alike in pronunciation to La-, Le, Le-, Lea, Leigh, Lew, Lleu, Loew, Loewe, Loewy, Lou, Lowe, Loy and Lugh. Other suggested similar names are Lem, Len, Les, Lex, Lexo, Reo and Teo. These names tend to be less commonly used than Leo.

See names
in meaning and etymology.