[ 1 syll. hug(h), hu-gh ] The baby boy name Hugh is pronounced as HHYuw- †. Hugh is used chiefly in the English language and its origin is Germanic. The name evolved as a short form of names containing the element 'hugu' (meaning heart, mind, spirit) and beginning with the element 'Hug-'. The name was introduced by the Normans to England in the 11th century. The name was borne by Saint Hugh of Lincoln (1135/1140-1200), a well known saint during the Reformation. It was also known from another person of a similar name, Little Saint Hugh of Lincoln (1247-1255), whose alleged murder by Jews sparked anti-Semitism feelings with ramifications that reach into modern times. The story was retold by Geoffrey Chaucer in The Prioress' Tale, through his 14th-century collection of stories called The Canterbury Tales. The name later enjoyed a revival in the 19th century. Various Gaelic names such as the Irish Aodh, the Scottish Ùisdean, and sometimes Eóghan, are Anglicized as Hugh.
In addition, Hugh is a short form of the name Hubert (Czech, Dutch, English, French, German, and Polish) in the English language.
The name Huguette (French) is the female form of Hugh.
Hugh is a widely used name; it has 33 variants that are used in English and other languages. Variants used in English include Fitzhugh, Howell, Hu, Hue, Hughe, Hughea, Hughee, Hughes, Hughey, Hughi, Hugo (also Dutch, French, German, Latin, Latinized, Portuguese, Scandinavian, and Spanish), and Huwe. The diminutive forms Hewie, Huey, Hughie, and Hughy are other English variants.
Foreign variants of Hugh include Ea (Irish), Hew (Welsh), Hewe (Spanish), Hiu (Hawaiian), Hugin (Spanish), Hugolino (Spanish), Hugon (Spanish), Hugues (French and Spanish), Huguito (Spanish), Huig (Dutch), Huw (Welsh), Ugo (Italian and Spanish), Ugolino (Spanish), and Ugone (Spanish). Specific foreign variants include the diminutive forms Hauke (Frisian and German), Shug (Scottish), and Shuggie (Scottish).
Hugh is a classic favorite. At present it is still somewhat popular as a baby name for boys, though to a lesser extent than it was in the past. In 1900, 0.179% of baby boys were given the name Hugh. It ranked at #88 then. The baby name has since markedly fallen in popularity, and is in recent years of occasional use. In 2018, its usage was only 0.014% and its ranking #806. Among the group of boy names directly linked to Hugh, Hudson was the most frequently used. In 2018, it was used 24 times more than Hugh.
† Pronunciation for Hugh: HH as in "he (HH.IY)" ; Y as in "you (Y.UW)" ; UW as in "two (T.UW)"
Details of famous persons named Hugh:
Actor Hugh Grant, born 9 September 1960, London, England.
Actor Hugh Jackman, born 12 October 1968, Sydney, Australia.
Actor Hugh Laurie, born 11 June 1959, Oxford, Oxfordshire, England.
Author Hugh Walpole, born 13 March 1884 - 1 June 1941, Auckland, New Zealand.
Publisher Hugh Hefner, born 9 April 1926, Chicago, Illinois.