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Updated May 17, 2024

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Boy name origins & meanings

What does Theodore mean and stand for?


  • Greek: Gift of God

Gender: Male

Syllables: 3

Pronunciation: The name Theodore is pronounced THEE-uh-dohr

The name Theodore has its roots in the Greek name "Theodoros," which translates to "gift of God." This name has been historically significant, used by numerous saints and religious figures, and carries a sense of timeless grace and strength.

How Popular Is The Name Theodore

Family name origins & meanings

French (Théodore) and English: from the personal name Théodore (Greek Theodōros, a compound of theos "God" + dōron "gift"), which was relatively popular in the Middle Ages because of its auspicious meaning. There was considerable confusion with the Germanic personal name Theodoric (see Terry). As an American family name, it has also absorbed various other European cognates, e.g. Greek Theodorakis, Theodoropoulos.

Famous people who gave their babies this name

Theodore in Pop Culture

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

  • Theodore "Teddy" Altman from Grey's Anatomy - Trauma surgeon with a complex personal history and significant character development.Popularity of the Name Theodore
  • Theodore Lawrence from Little Women - Often called "Laurie," he is a charming and wealthy young man who befriends the March sisters.
  • Theodore "Ted" Logan from Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure - One half of the time-traveling duo who experiences wild adventures through history.
  • Theodore "Theo" Huxtable from The Cosby Show - The only son of the Huxtable family, known for his relatable teenage struggles.
  • Theodore Templeton from The Boss Baby - A highly intelligent and ambitious infant who balances his life as a baby and a secret agent.

Popularity of the Name Theodore

According to the Social Security Administration, the name Theodore has been gaining in popularity in recent years, reflecting a broader trend towards choosing traditional names. This classic name has consistently ranked highly, demonstrating its timeless appeal among parents in the United States. The name Theodore, which means "gift of God" in Greek, combines historical depth with a modern sensibility, making it a distinguished choice for a baby boy.

Historically, the name has been associated with several notable figures, including Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th President of the United States, known for his exuberant personality and range of interests as well as for being a driving force behind the Progressive Era. Furthermore, Theodore Dreiser, an American novelist of the naturalist school, is another prominent bearer of the name, whose works have left a significant mark on American literature.

In terms of fictional characters, Theodore "Teddy" Laurence from Louisa May Alcott's Little Women and Theodore "Theo" Raeken from the television series Teen Wolf are just a couple of examples that showcase the name's versatility and enduring popularity across different media. The name's continued presence in literature and popular culture contributes to its appeal to parents looking for a name with both historical significance and contemporary resonance.

Where Is the Name Theodore Popular?

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

Nicknames for Theodore

These shortened names can make great nicknames for your baby.

  • Ted
  • Teddy
  • Theo

Theodore Pairs Well With These Middle Names

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

Appears On

Browse these related baby name lists that feature this name and many, many more!

People Who Like the Name Theodore Also Like

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