[ 2 syll. he-nry, hen-ry ] The baby boy name Henry is pronounced as HHEHNRiy- †. Henry is an English name of Germanic origin. The name is of the meaning house owner, lord of the manor. A two-element name, it is derived from the elements 'heim' meaning home, homeland ; 'ric' rich, powerful, ruler. Heimerich (Germanic) and Heimrich (Germanic) are older forms of Henry. The name was borne by numerous princes and kings in continental Europe; six kings of France were named Henri, and four kings of Castile and Leon also bore the name. In Germany, the name was known from Henry the Fowler (876-936), the first king of the medieval German state. The name was introduced by the Normans to England in the form of Henri during the medieval period. It became a popular name among English royalty and was borne by eight subsequent kings, the first being Henry I (1133-1189), the youngest son of William the Conqueror, and the last being the notorious Henry VIII (1491-1547). In Shakespeare's Henry IV (1597), the youthful Prince Henry is variously called Harry or nicknamed Hal, reflecting the popular use of the name Harry in medieval England. The name Harry is today still more popular in England, while Henry is more popular in America. The name Henrietta (English and German) is the female version of Henry.
Henry is a widely used name; it has 97 variants that are used in English and other languages. Variants used in English include Anrai, Einri, Enrique (used in Spanish as well), Enzo (used in Italian as well), Hagan, Harro, Hawkins, Heinrich (used in German as well), Henare, Hendrick (used in Dutch and German as well), Hendrik (used in Dutch, Estonian, German, and Scandinavian as well), Hendry, Henery, Hening, Hennyng, Henrea, Henree, Henrey, Henri (used in Finnish, French, and Slavic as well), Henrie, Henrik (used in Finnish, German, Hungarian, Scandinavian, and Slavic as well), Henrry, Henryc, Henryck, Henyng, Heriot, Heromin, and Herriot. The pet forms Hal, Hank, and Harry are other English variants.
Foreign variants of Henry include Anraí (Irish), Anraoi (Irish), Anrique (Spanish), Arrigo (Italian), Bambis (Greek), Eanraig (Gaelic and Scottish), Einrí (Irish), Endika (Basque), Endrik (German), Enri (Irish), Enric (Catalan and Romanian), Enrico (Italian), Enriko (German), Enrikos (Greek), Enriquillo (Spanish), Enzio (Italian), Éinrí (Irish), Haiko (German), Hanale (Hawaiian), Hanraoi (Irish), Haralpos (Greek), Heike (Dutch), Heikki (Finnish), Heine (German), Heiner (German), Hendricus (Dutch), Heneli (Hawaiian), Heniek (Polish), Henier (Polish), and Henk (Dutch). Specific foreign variants include the pet forms Heiko (German), Heino (German), Heinz (German), Henning (German and Scandinavian), and Quique (Spanish).
Henry is very popular as a baby name for boys, and it is also considered trendy. At the height of its usage in 1902, 1.622% of baby boys were given the name Henry. Its ranking then was #10. The baby name has since markedly fallen in popularity. In 2012, its usage was 0.398% and its ranking #43, appearing with somewhat increasing regularity in the recent decade. Within all boy names in its group, Henry was the most popular. In 2012, Henry was more frequently used than the next most popular name, Enrique, by 10 times. Henry has predominantly been a baby boy name, though in the past century it has also been used for girls. In 1942, baby boys named Henry outnumbered girls by 119 times.
† Pronunciation for Henry: HH as in "he (HH.IY)" ; EH as in "ebb (EH.B)" ; N as in "knee (N.IY)" ; R as in "race (R.EY.S)" ; IY as in "eat (IY.T)"
Details of famous persons named Henry:
Actor Henry Fonda, born 16 May 1905 - 12 August 1982, Grand Island, Nebraska.
Actor Henry Irving, born John Henry Brodribb, 6 February 1838 - 13 October 1905, 13 October 1905.
Author Graham Greene, born Henry Graham Greene, 2 October 1904 - 3 April 1991, Berkhampsted, Hertfordshire, England.
Author H. Rider Haggard, born Henry Rider Haggard, 22 June 1856 - 14 May 1925, Norfolk, England.
Author Henry James, born 15 April 1843 - 28 February 1916, New York, New York.
Author H.L. Mencken, born Henry Louis Mencken, 12 September 1880 - 29 January 1956, Baltimore, Maryland.
Author Henry Miller, born 26 December 1891 - 1980, New York, New York.
Author Henry David Thoreau, born David Henry Thoreau, 12 July 1817 - 6 May 1862, Concord, Massachusetts.
Baseball Player Henry (Hank) Aaron, born 5 February 1934, Mobile, Alabama.
Baseball Player Lou Gehrig, born Henry Louis Gehrig, 19 June 1903 - 2 June 1941, New York, New York.