[ 2 syll. dia-ne, di-ane ] The baby girl name Diane is pronounced in English as Day-AEN or in French as Diy-AEN †. Diane is of Indoeuropean origin, and it is used mainly in English, French, and German. It is derived from the element deiwo with the meaning 'light, deity'. The French form Diane was popular with Renaissance aristocrats who loved hunting and thus the name, for its allusion to Diana the Greek goddess of the hunt.
Diane is a shortening of Diana in the English, French, and German languages.
Diane is a widely used name; it has 51 variants. Variants include Danne, Dayann, Dayanna, Dayanne, Deana, Deanda, Deandra, Deandrea, Deandria, Deane, Deann, Deanna, Deanne, Dede, Dee, Deeana, Deeandra, Deeane, Deeanna, Deeanne, DeeDee, Deena, Deon, Deona, Deondra, Deonna, Deonne, Diaan, Diahanne, and Diahna. Other English forms include the shortenings Di and Dia, and the spelling variants Diahann, Dian (used in French too), Diann, Dianne (used in French, and German too), Dyan, Dyane, and Dyann.
Diane is unusual as a baby name for girls. Its usage peaked in 1955 with 1.163% of baby girls being named Diane. It ranked at #14 then. The baby name has since experienced a marked drop in popularity, and is of only infrequent use today. Among the group of girl names directly related to Diane, Diana was the most regularly used in 2012. Diane has mostly been a baby girl name, although in the past century it has also been used for boys. In 1958, the name Diane was given to 348 times as many baby girls than boys.
† Pronunciation for Diane: D as in "day (D.EY)" ; AY as in "side (S.AY.D)" ; AE as in "at (AE.T)" ; N as in "knee (N.IY)" ; IY as in "eat (IY.T)"
Details of famous persons named Diane:
Actress Diane Keaton, born Diane Hall, 5 January 1946, Los Angeles, California.
Actress Diane Lane, born 22 January 1965, New York, New York.
Actress Diane Ladd, born Rose Diane Ladner, November 29, 1935, Meridian, Mississippi.
Actress Diane Keen, born 29 July 1946, London, England.
Noblewoman Diane de Poitiers, born September 3, 1499 - April 25, 1566, Saint-Vallier, Drôme, France.
Photographer Diane Arbus, born Diane Nemerov, 14 March 1923 - 26 July 1971, New York, New York.
TV Newscaster Diane Sawyer, born 22 December 1945, Glasgow, Kentucky.