[ 2 syll. a-li-ce, al-ice ] The baby girl name Alice is also used as a boy name, though it is far more popular for girls. It is pronounced AELihS in English, aeLIYS in French, or aaLIYCHeh in Italian †. Alice is of Germanic origin. It is used mainly in Czech, English, French, Italian, German, Portuguese, and Scandinavian. The meaning of Alice is 'of a noble kind'. It is a two-element name derived from adal and heit which are of the meanings 'noble, honorable' and 'kind, sort, type' respectively. The old form Adalheidis (Germanic) had the short form Adelais (Old French), which itself was further contracted to Adaliz (Old French) and then Alis (Old French). The latter were introduced by the Normans into England in further forms such as Aaliz, Adalis, Alix, Aliz, Alys, and Alyx, and eventually became the name Alice.
The name Alice was popularized by the Bele Aaliz medieval romances, and by the 12th century it became widely used in England as well as France. It appeared in Shakespeare's play Henry V (1599) as the name of the attendant Lady Alice. It lost its popularity by the 17th century, having garnered rustic and old-fashioned associations, before enjoying a revival in the 19th century via romance literature, often in the Latinized form Alicia.
It was further popularized by the birth of Queen Victoria's daughter Princess Alice (1843-1878), and the titular heroine of Lewis Carroll's classic children's novels, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865) and Through the Looking-Glass (1871), who is based on Carroll's child friend Alice Pleasance Liddell (1852-1934), the daughter of the Dean of Christ Church, Oxford. See Alice for more information.
Alice is a Czech, English, French, and Italian familiar form of the English and Italian Adelaide.
Alice is also an English, French, German, Italian, and Portuguese form of the Dutch, German, and Scandinavian Adelheid.
Adelice, Al, Alais, Alaisa, Aleasha, Aleashia, Aleasia, Aleassa, Aleceea, Alecia, Aleece, Aleecia, Aleesa, Aleese, Aleesha, Aleeshia, Aleeshya, Aleethia, Alesha, Alesia, Alessa, Aleta, Aletha, Alia, Alicea, Alicen, Alicia (also French, Latinized, Scandinavian, and Spanish), Alicie, Aliece, and Alikah. Other English forms include the contracted form Ali, the familiar forms Alie (also used in Dutch), Alisan (also used in French, and Scottish), Alli (also used in Finnish and), Allie, Ellie (also used in Scottish), and Ellis, and the spelling variants Allice and Alyce.
Forms used in foreign languages include Aalish (Gaelic), Adelicia (German), Aileas (Scottish), Aili (Scottish), Ailis (Gaelic and Irish), Ailish (Irish), Ailís (Irish), Ala (Polish), Aleka (Hawaiian), Alexia (German), Alexie (German), Alica (Czech and Slavic), Alicja (Polish), Aliisa (Finnish), Alika (Hawaiian), Alike (Greek), Alinka (Polish), Alisi (Tongan), Alisia (Polish), Alisz (Hungarian), Alix (French), Aliz (Greek and Hungarian), Alícia (Catalan and Portuguese), Alís (Irish), Alya (Russian), Elica (Romanian), Elise (German), Eliza (Romanian), Elschen (German), and Else (German). Specific foreign variants include the familiar forms Ailie (Scottish), Aillie (Gaelic), Ailsa (Scottish), Ailsie (Scottish), Elke (Dutch, Frisian, and German), and Elkie (Dutch and German).
See also the related form, the English and Hebrew Aliza.
Alice is popular as a baby girl name, and it is also regarded as trendy. At the height of its usage in 1906, 1.338% of baby girls were named Alice. It was #8 in rank then. The baby name has seen a marked drop in frequency since then. In 2012, it ranked at #127 with a usage of 0.129%, having regained its popularity somewhat in the recent decade. Within the family of girl names directly related to Alice, Allison was the most popular. The name was twice as popular as Alice in 2012. Alice has in the last century been primarily given to baby girls. In 1937, 170 times more baby girls than boys were given the name Alice.
† Pronunciation for Alice: AE as in "at (AE.T)" ; L as in "lay (L.EY)" ; IH as in "it (IH.T)" ; S as in "see (S.IY)" ; IY as in "eat (IY.T)" ; AA as in "odd (AA.D)" ; CH as in "cheese (CH.IY.Z)" ; EH as in "ebb (EH.B)"
Details of famous persons named Alice:
Actress Ali MacGraw, born Alice MacGraw April 1, 1938, Pound Ridge, New York.
Author Alice Munro, born 10 July 1931, Wingham, Ontario, Canada.
Author Alice Walker, born 9 February 1944, Eatonton, Georgia.
Author Alison Uttley, born Alice Jane Taylor 17 December 1884 - 7 May 1976, Cromford, England.