Victor is a masculine given name of Latin origins. During my etymological studies, I’ve learned the history and meaning of the name Victor, which you can find on this page.
Meaning of the name Victor: Derived from the Latin language, the meaning of the name Victor is “conqueror,” “winner,” “to win” or “champion.” It was popularized in Europe when several Christian saints and popes were named Victor.
Origins of the Name Victor
The name Victor originated in Medieval Rome when it was used as a given name for boys. Evidence suggests that Victor was borne from the Latin word meaning “conqueror.” During the Medieval period, however, the name was converted into a masculine given name, thus paving the way for widespread adoption.
Several Christian saints and popes have been named Victor, beginning with Pope Victor I. Little knowledge is known about Pope Victor I, though archeological evidence suggests that he became the pope of Rome around the year 189 – and he retained this title until his death in 199. It’s also believed that Pope Victor I was the first pope to have borne in Africa. Regardless, Pope Victor, I was largely responsible for popularizing the name Victor.
Saint Victor of Marseilles was another well-known Christian figure bearing the name Victor. Born in the 3rd century A.D., Saint Victor of Marseilles originally served as an officer in the Roman army. During his service, he taught his fellow soldiers Christianity. Roman Emperor Maximian then ordered the arrest and detention of Saint Victor of Marseilles.
Along with about a half-dozen saints and popes, countless other famous figures have been named Victor. Victor Hugo was a 19th-century French author who wrote several high-profile novels, including the “Les Miserables” and “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.” As Hugo’s novels gained global recognition, so did the given name Victor.
The popularity of the name Victor
Victor has been a popular boys’ name for over a century. In 1880, birth records show that 100 newborn boys were named Victor in the United States, making it the country’s 136th most popular boys’ name. In 1920, Victor was even more popular, ranking as the 81st most popular boys’ name in the United States. By 1960, its popularity had dropped just slightly to rank 103.
Today, Victor is still a popular masculine given name. In 2011, it was the 142nd most popular boy’s name in the United States, with birth records showing that over 2,800 newborn boys were given this name.
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