Human names/William

From Wikibooks, open books for an open world
Jump to navigation Jump to search

The name William is a male given name of Germanic origin. It has been in popular use since the Norman conquest of England in 1066 and remains very popular even today. It is derived from the Germanic name Willahelm meaning "will helmet", composed of the elements wil ("will, desire") and helm ("helmet, protection"). The name "William" has many diminutive forms, including "Will", "Willy", "Willie", "Billy", and "Billie".

The name "William" has been a very popular name in multiple countries, including the United States, Canada, Scotland, Sweden, and France. In the United States, "William" was in the top 20 names for boys in every year since records began in 1880. It has been in the top five in every year from 1880 to 1949, inclusive, spending 41 of those 70 years (1880–1920) at number two. In 1880, the name was given to 9532 baby boys, accounting for 8.05% of that year's male births. In 1947, the name was given to 66,992 baby boys, accounting for 3.61% of that year's male birth count. The name briefly fell out of the top 10 for three decades, from 1976 to 2005, with the exceptions of 2001 and 2004, before returning to the top ten, and by 2009, the top five as well. It has been back in the top five since 2009. It was number five in 2020, and it was given to 12,541 baby boys that year, accounting for 0.685% of that year's male births. The year 2020 was the twelfth consecutive year that "William" ranked within the top five names for boys. Meanwhile, the related name "Liam" was the number one name for boys in 2020.

Famous people[edit | edit source]

  • William I of England (1027–1087), a.k.a. William the Conqueror or William the Bastard
  • William II of England (1056–1100), a.k.a. William Rufus
  • William I of Scotland (c. 1142–1214), a.k.a. William the Lion
  • William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke (1146/7-1219), Anglo-Norman soldier and statesman
  • William IX, Count of Poitiers (1153–1156), first son of Henry II of England
  • William III of England (1650–1702), also William II of Scotland, a.k.a. William of Orange
  • William IV of the United Kingdom (1765–1837), King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover
  • Prince William, Duke of Cambridge (born 1982), formerly Prince William of Wales, son of Charles, Prince of Wales
  • William Shakespeare (1564–1616), English playwright, poet and actor, known for plays such as Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth
  • William Clinton (born 1946), 42nd president of the United States, better known by the name "Bill Clinton"
  • William Cooper (1943–2001), American writer, radio host, and political activist
  • William Crosfield (1838–1909), British politician
  • William Faulkner (1897–1962), American writer
  • William Villeger (born 2000), French badminton player
  • William Phipps (1922-2018), American actor and singer, best known for performing the voice of Prince Charming from Disney’s Cinderella