What does Ray mean?
Ray [ray] as a boys' name (also used less commonly as girls' name Ray) is pronounced ray. It is of English and Old German origin, and the meaning of Ray is "protecting hands". A short form of Raymond used as an independent name in the 20th century and also in contemporary blends. See also Raynor. Singer Ray Charles; boxer Sugar Ray Leonard; author Ray Bradbury; actors Ray Liotta, Ray Romano.
Affiliated boy name: Rashaun.Creative forms:
(male) Raby, Rany, ..
(female) Rah, Raie, .. Middle name pairings:
Ray Nash (R.N.), ..
How popular is Ray?
Ray is a very prominent first name for men (#132 out of 1220, Top 11%) and also a very prominent surname for all people (#208 out of 150436, Top 1%). (2000 U.S. Census)
Ray reached its peak position of #55 in the U.S. during 1890-1899, and is presently at #713. (2015 Birth Statistics)
Which version is better?with its variant forms and related boy names. Prominent varying forms of Ray (#713 via latest list) rated in the Top 2000 are Raymond (#259 via latest list), Ramon (#633), Raylen (#1549), Rashaun, Rayford, Rayce and Rae. Adoption of these relations of Ray was widespread in the 1920s (adoption of 1.47%) and is now significantly lower (adoption 0.12%, 92% less), with forms like Ray falling out of fashion.
Ray▼ is pronounced similarly to Rei, Reo, Rey▲, Rio, Roe, Roi, Row, Rowe, Roy▼, Ruy, Rye, Ryu, Ryuu and Wray. Other recommended names are Bay, Day, Fay▼, Gay, Jay▼, Kay▼, Rab, Rad, Raj, Ram, Ramy, Ras, Tay and Way. These names tend to be less commonly used than Ray.See names in meaning and etymology.