Vanessa is a girl’s name of British origin, meaning “butterfly.” This title was brought to life poetically in 1712 when Anglo-Irish author Jonathan Swift needed a name for a character in a poem he was writing. Inspired by his lover Esther Vanhomrigh, he took the first syllables of her last and given names and combined them to coin the name Vanessa. With such a creative conception behind her name, this little girl may too embrace her artistic side, letting her imagination soar. Vanessa is also the name of a species of butterfly, delicate and gentle just like baby.
Famous People Named Vanessa
Wondering who else shares this name? Check out these well known people who made this baby name famous.
- Vanessa LacheyModel
Vanessa Name Popularity Data
The Bump Ranking
Overall:Vanessa is currently #227 on The Bump
Girl:Vanessa is currently #99 on The Bump Girl Names
Overall:Vanessa is currently #652 in U.S. births
Girl:Vanessa is currently #231 in U.S. births
Yearly Ranking Change:
In comparison to the previous year's data
100,000+ Baby Names by Bruce Lansky, pg. 306
Online Etymology Dictionary, Vanessa, August 2023
Britannica, Jonathon Swift, Anglo-Irish author and clergyman, October 2023
Behind the Name, Vanessa, January 2022
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