[ 2 syll. al-vin, alv-in ] The baby boy name Alvin is pronounced as AELVihN †. Alvin is used chiefly in the English language and its origin is Old English. The name's meaning is elf friend; noble friend. It is from the elements 'aelf' meaning elf, supernatural being + 'aethel' noble, honorable + 'wine' friend. The first name is derived from both the old forms Aelfwine (Old English) and Aethelwine (Old English), which gave rise to the forms Alwin or Alewyn after the Norman Conquest. The medieval forms were not particulary popular, until they were given a boost by Theodore Watts-Dunton's prose romance Aylwin (1898). The name was later made familiar as the name of the singing chipmunk character in the popular US cartoon series Alvin and the Chipmunks (1958-). The name Alvina (English and Russian) is the female form of Alvin.
Alvin has 26 variants that are used in English and other languages. Variants used in English include Alv, Alvan, Alvea, Alvee, Alvey, Alvi, Alvis, Alvon, Alvun, Alwin (used in German and Portuguese as well), Alwyn (used in Welsh as well), Aylwin, Elwin, and Elwyn. Other English forms include the short form Al, the diminutive forms Alvie and Alvy, and the variant spellings Alven, Alvyn, and Elvin.
See also the related form, Elvis (English).
Alvin is a classic favorite. At present it is still fairly popular as a baby name for boys, though to a lesser extent than it was in the past. Its usage peaked modestly in 1927 with 0.248% of baby boys being given the name Alvin. It ranked at #66 then. The baby name has since markedly fallen in popularity, and is today of occasional use. In 2018, its usage was only 0.020% and its ranking #654, but it was nonetheless the most widely used among all boy names in its group.
† Pronunciation for Alvin: AE as in "at (AE.T)" ; L as in "lay (L.EY)" ; V as in "vow (V.AW)" ; IH as in "it (IH.T)" ; N as in "knee (N.IY)"
Details of famous persons named Alvin:
Dancer Alvin Ailey, born January 5, 1931 - December 1, 1989, Rogers, Texas.
Daredevil Alvin 'Shipwreck' Kelly, born 11 October 1952, New York, New York.
Singer Alvin Stardust, born Bernard William Jewry, 27 September 1942 - 27 September 1942, Muswell Hill, North London, England.