Meaning and Origin of: Ashley

Meaning and Origin of Ashley

Girl name origins & meanings

  • Old English : Ash tree; for girl or boy

What does Ashley mean and stand for?

The name Ashley is of Old English origin and means "ash tree." It was originally a surname denoting someone who lived near an ash tree clearing. It is comprised of the Old English words æsc and leah.

Syllables: 2

Boy name origins & meanings

  • Old English : Ash tree; for boy or girl

Family name origins & meanings

  • English : habitational name from any of the numerous places in southern and central England named Ashley, from Old English æsc ‘ash’ + lēah ‘woodland clearing’.
  • The name of Capt. John Ashley appears in the VA Charter of 1609. For more than two centuries his descendants were prominent in Norfolk, VA. A branch of the family settled in Pittsburgh in the early 19th century.

Famous people who gave their babies this name


According to Social Security Administration data, Ashley has dramatically decreased in popularity. It held a position in the top 10 until 2006, the top 50 until 2013, and the top 100 until 2016. Despite its slight decline, Ashley has stayed in the top 200 and is still more popular than its sister spelling, Ashleigh.

However, it is the 39th most popular name on

According to Google search data analysis, in the last five years Ashley was at its peak popularity in May 2019.

Ashley was incredibly popular in the 1990s, hitting number 1 in 1991. Since then, it's dwindled slightly, but is still fairly popular. Some notable namesakes include Ashley Benson, Ashley Greene, Ashley Monroe, Ashley Tisdale, Ashley Olsen, and Ashley Judd. It's also been a popular choice among celebrity parents, including Joe Biden, Howard Stern, and Terry Lewis. Of course, Ashley has also been hugely popular in pop culture, appearing in Recess, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Criminal Minds, Young and the Restless, and Once Upon a Time.

Where is it Popular?

Ashley was searched for most often in the following states:

Nicknames for Ashley

  • Ally
  • Ash
  • Lee

Pairs well with these middle names