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Updated April 16, 2024

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Boy name origins & meanings

What does Alexander mean and stand for?


  • Greek: Defender of the people
  • Latin: He who comes to save warriors

Gender: Male

Syllables: 4

Pronunciation: The name Alexander is pronounced al-ig-zan-der

The name Alexander is of Greek origin, derived from the name Ἀλέξανδρος (Aléxandros), meaning "defender of the people" or "protector of men". It gained prominence through Alexander the Great, the legendary king of Macedon known for his military genius and the vast empire he established. This name has transcended cultures and epochs, making it a timeless choice for a boy's name.

How Popular Is The Name Alexander

Family name origins & meanings


Scottish, English, German, Dutch; also found in many other cultures: from the personal name Alexander, classical Greek Alexandros, which probably originally meant "repulser of men (i.e. of the enemy)", from alexein "to repel" + andros, genitive of anēr "man." Its popularity in the Middle Ages was due mainly to the Macedonian conqueror, Alexander the Great (356–323 B.C.)—or rather to the hero of the mythical versions of his exploits that gained currency in the so-called Alexander Romances.

The name was also borne by various early Christian saints, including a patriarch of Alexandria (A.D. 250–326), whose main achievement was condemning the Arian heresy. The Gaelic form of the personal name is Alasdair, which has given rise to a number of Scottish and Irish patronymic surnames, for example McAllister. Alexander is a common forename in Scotland, often representing an Anglicized form of the Gaelic name. In North America the form Alexander has absorbed many cases of cognate names from other languages, for example Spanish Alejandro, Italian Alessandro, Greek Alexandropoulos, Russian Aleksandr, etc. (For forms, see Hanks and Hodges 1988.) It has also been adopted as a Jewish name.

A number of Scotch-Irish families of this name landed at New York in the early 18th century. By 1746, six of them were established in NC. Others came in through Philadelphia, for example Archibald Alexander, who came from Londonderry in northern Ireland in 1736 and established himself in VA.


Famous people who gave their babies this name

Alexander in Pop Culture

Do you know these fictional characters that share this first name?

  • Alexander Rozhenko from Star Trek: The Next Generation - The son of Worf and a recurring character known for his struggle with Klingon heritage.
  • Alexander "Xander" Harris from Buffy the Vampire Slayer - A loyal friend and member of the "Scooby Gang" with a knack for comic relief and heroism.
  • Alexander DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange - The disturbingly charismatic and sociopathic protagonist of Stanley Kubrick's film.
  • Alexander Hamilton from Hamilton - A founding father of the United States, whose life story is told in this groundbreaking musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
  • Alexander "Lex" Luthor from Superman - Brilliant scientist and Superman's arch-nemesis, known for his intellect and bald head.

Popularity of the Name Alexander

According to Social Security Administration data, the name Alexander has maintained a strong and enduring popularity in the United States. Alexander has consistently ranked as a favored name, often holding positions within the top 20, top 50, and even top 10 names over the years. This name's popularity can be attributed to its classic and timeless appeal, resonating with many parents seeking traditional yet noble names for their children.

In addition to its popularity, historical figures such as Alexander the Great and notable individuals like actors Alexander Skarsgård and writers Alexander Dumas have contributed to the name's prestige and cultural significance. Furthermore, fictional characters named Alexander have appeared in various media titles, adding to the name's widespread recognition and association with strength, leadership, and intellect

Where Is the Name Alexander Popular?

This name is most popular across certain states in the U.S., including those highlighted on the map below.

Nicknames for Alexander

These shortened names can make great nicknames for your baby.

  • Alex
  • Xan
  • Xander

Alexander Pairs Well With These Middle Names

Looking for a middle name that fits perfectly? Consider these!

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