Name Days in the Greek Orthodox Faith

May 9, 2009 | Religion

As a Greek Cypriot I learnt from a very young age that in our faith Name Days play an important part, and are as important or sometimes more important that birthdays.  Now as part of Ellines United I have decided to add to this website all the names that need to observe.  As many of you may wonder where your name may have come from here is a brief run down of where your name was generated.
Most children born into the Greek Cypriot Faith will be given a name that is aligned to a Greek Orthodox recognized saint.  A name day is celebrated on the saint’s day and generally involves celebrations similar to that of your birthday (which means sweets, gifts and gatherings).  On name days friends and family come to visit and wish you well.  Greeks wish us Χρόνια Πολλά and means in English many happy years.  The gatherings can be celebrated in many ways, going out for clubs, restaurants having parties generally celebrating the Saint’s day.  We have separated all the name days according to the months in which they are celebrated, and also provided the names for each of the days.
Have you ever wondered how you got your name?  I did for years; I wondered why I was named George.  Now I was born on the 23 April which as you will see is St George’s day, to make matters worse my fathers name is George.  Now traditionally Greeks would generally name their kids after there grandparents.  Now my grandfathers name is Kyriacos, so I should have been name Kyriacos George.  This would have followed many years of tradition where parents named their kids after their grandparents, (boys after their grandfather and girls after their grandmother.  Now as you can see my grandfathers name is Kyriacos.  Middle-names were given to associate the child’s father.  Now from what you can see my parents did not follow tradition.  If we even go further in my history, my great grandfathers name is George, so my parents have given me problem for my future son.  Do I name my son George George, or do I reverse the tradition and name my son Kyriacos George or do I break tradition and choose another Saints name.  This will have to be decided between my future partner and myself.  Girls names also follow a similar standard as boys name, so if you have difficulty naming your kids how about you go back to tradition, or look through the vast Saint names below.
From a young age my parents would take us to church to celebrate this huge event.  Not only did we have to go to Church but we also had to fast.  On Good Friday, there is a sad atmosphere and the church bells ring and flags fly at half-mast.  One of my fondest memories of this night is the carrying of the Epitaphios (which represents the tomb of Jesus) around the Church.  This religious event also brings people together to celebrate Christ’s resurrection.  The resurrection of Christ starts at the midnight service and ends once the last guest has left.
Midnight mass is the most important of all religious days leading up to this big day.  This is the true celebration of Christ.  At midnight, the church turns off all its lights and all church followers light candles.  During this part of the service all the followers sing out the traditional hymn “Christos Anesti” or “Christ has risen”  After the service we all try and take the candles home and let them burn for as long as possible.
January 01 Basileios, Vassilis (Basil), Vassiliki
January 06 Theofania, Theofanis, Fotis, Fanis, Fotini
January 07 Ioannis, Yannis, Giannis (John, Ian, Jan)
January 08 Dominikis, Dominick
January 10 Grigorios Nussis
January 11 Theodosios, Thodoris (Theodore), Theodora
January 17 Antonios, Antonis, Antonios (Anthony, Adonis)
January 18 Athanasios & Kyrillos (Cyril), Thanassis
January 19 Makarios, Makaria
January 20 Eythimios, Thimios
January 21 Maximos, Massimos/ Neofytos / Agnis (Agnes)
January 22 Anastasios / Timothetos, Tassos
January 23 Agathagellos
January 24 Xenis, Xenia, Xeni
January 25 Grigorios, Grigoris (Gregory), Theologos, Margarita
January 26 Xenofontos
January 29 Ignatios (Ignatius)
January 30 Trion Ierarxon
January 31 Kyros & Ioannos Aaron
February 01 Tryfonos
February 02 Ypapanti tos Sotiros
February 05 Agathis (Agatha)
February 06 Voskolos / Fotios
February 07 Parthenios, Parthena
February 08 Zaxarios / Theod. Stratilatos
February 09 Nikiforos, Nikofora
February 10 Charalambos, Zinonos, Haralambos (Harold), Hara, Hariklia (Harriet)
February 11 Vasios
February 12 Meletios
February 13 Akula & Priskillis (Priscilla)
February 14 Ayxentios, Valentini
February 15 Eusevios
February 17 Theodoros Tironos / Poulcherias
February 18 Leontos Romis
February 20 Agathonos / Vissarionos
February 22 Anthi (Anthea)
February 23 Polykarpos
February 23 Nestoros
February 25 Tarasios
February 26 Porfurios
March 01 Marias Aigyptias, Evdokias / Tis Tyrofagos
March 02 Evthalias
March 03 Kleonikos
March 05 Kononos
March 07 Laurentios (Laurence)
March 08 Theofylaktos
March 16 Xristodosios
March 17 Alexios, Alexios, Alexis (Alex)
March 18 Kyrillos (Cyril)
March 19 Xrysanthos, Chrisantos
March 21 Iakovos (Jacob)
March 25 Evangelismos / Evangelos, Eva, Litsa, Lia, Vangelis
March 27 Ilarionos, Lydia
March 31 Ypatios
April 06 Eftyxios
April 15 Leonidas (Leo, Leonard, Leon)
April 23 Georgios, Giorgos, Yorgos (George)
April 24 Elisabet (Elisabeth, Lisa)
April 25 Marcos (Mark)
April 28 Panayotis, Panagiotis, Panos, Panagiota, Pigi*
May 02 Zoodochos Pigis
May 03 Timotheos (Timothy)
May 05 Eirinis, Irini (Irene)
May 06 Serafim
May 07 Akakios
May 09 Christoforos (Christopher)
May 10 Simonos (Simon)
May 11 Kyrillos & Methodos
May 13 Sergios, Sergios / Glykerias, Glykeria (Sergio)
May 15 Paxomios
May 17 Andronikos
May 18 Ioulias, Ioulia (Julia, Julie)
May 19 Menandrios
May 21 Konstantinos & Elenis, Konstantine, Kostas, Tina, Kostantina, Eleni (Helen)
May 27 Ioannos Rosos
May 28 Tis Analipseos
May 29 Theodosias
May 30 Isaakios (Isaac)
June 2 Nikiforos
June 4 Marthas & Marias, Martha
June 5 Dorotheos (Dorothea, Dorothy)
June 7 Sevastianis (Sebastian)
June 8 Kalliopis (Calliope)
June 11 Vartholomaios (Bartholomew, Bart) / Varnava
June 19 Paisios
June 22 Zinonos
June 29 Petros & Paulos, Petros, Pavlos (Peter, Paul, Pavel)
June 30 Synaxi ton 12 Apostolon, Apostolis, Apostolos
July 1 Kosma & Damianos (Damian)
July 3 Yakinthos (Hyacinth)
July 7 Kyriakis, Kyriaki
July 8 Theofilos / Prokopios
July 9 Pagratios
July 11 Eyfimias / OlgasJ
uly 12 Veronikis (Veronica)
July 14 Nikodimos
July 16 Athinogenoss
July 17 Marinas, Marina
July 18 Aimilianos (Emile, Emily)
July 20 Profiti Elia, Ilias (Elias, Elijah, Eli)
July 22 Marias Magdalinis, Magdalini, Magda, Magdalena, Lena
July 26 Paraksevis
July 27 Panteleimonos, Pantelis
July 29 Kallinikos
July 31 Iosif Arimatheias, Iosif, Sifi
August 06 Sotiris, Sotiria
August 07 Asterios, Asteria
August 15 Assumption Day – Koimisis tis Theotokos, Maria, Despina, Thespina, Marios (Mary, Marie)
August 24 Kosma tos Aitolos
August 26 Andrianos & Natalias, Adrianos, Nathalia, Natalia (Adrian, Natalie)
August 27 Fanourios, Fanouria
August 30 Alexandros, Alexandra (Alexandra, Sandra, Sander, Alexander)
September 01 Simeon
September 03 Anthimos
September 04 Moisi/Ermionis
September 05 Zaxarios, Zacharias (Zachary)
September 08 Gennisi tis Theotokos
September 09 Ioakeim & Annis (Joachim, Anne)
September 11 Evathia (Eve)
September 13 Kornilios / Aristeidos, Kornilia (Cornelius, Cornelia)
September 14 Ypsosi tos Timios Stauros, Stavros (Steven)
September 15 Nikita
September 16 Eyfimias
September 17 Sofias, Pisteos, Agapis, Elpidas, Sofia, Agapi, Elpida
September 18 Eymenios / Ariadnis (Ariadne)
September 20 Efstathios, Stathis
September 22 Fokas
September 23 Syllipsi Prodromos
September 24 Theklas, Thekla
September 25 Eyfrosinis
September 26 Metastasi Ioannos Evaggelistos
September 27 Kallistratos
September 29 Kyriakos, Kyriaki
October 01 Ananios / Pomanos Melodos
October 02 Kyprianos / Iostiounis
October 03 Dionisios Aeropagitos, Dionisos, Dionysus
October 04 Ierotheos
October 05 Xaritinis
October 06 Thoma (Thomas, Tom)
October 07 Polychronios
October 08 Pelagias, Pelagia
October 09 Iakovos (Jacob)
October 10 Eflampios
October 15 Loskianos
October 18 Loska, Loskas (Lucas, Luke)
October 19 Kleopatras (Cleo)
October 20 Artemios / Gerasimos Kefallinias, Yerasimos
October 21 Sokratous, Sokrates, Sokratis
October 23 Iakovos (Jacob)
October 24 Sevastianis (Sebastian)
October 26 Dimitrios Myrovlitos, Dimitris, Dimitrios, Dimitria (Jim, James)
October 27 Nestoros
October 28 Agias Skepis
October 30 Zinovios
November 01 Ag. Anarron/ Kosma & Damianos, Anargiros, Argiris, Kosmas, Damianos (Damian)
November 08 Michail & Gavriel, Michalis, Michail, Michali, Angelos, Stamatis, Stamos (Michael, Angelo, Gabriel)
November 09 Nektarios
November 11 Mina / Viktoros (Victor)
November 13 Ioannos Chrysostomos
November 14 Filippos, Philippos (Philip)
November 16 Mathaios (Matthias, Matthew)
November 18 Platonos
November 21 Eisodia tis Theotokos, Despina, Maria
November 22 Filimonos
November 25 Merkourios / Aikaterinis, Katerina (Catherine, Kate)
November 26 Stylianos, Stella, Stelios
November 27 Nathanail (Nate, Nathaniel)
November 30 Andrea, Andreas (Andrew, Andre)
December 01 Theoklitos
December 02 Myropis
December 04 Varvaras, Barbara
December 05 Savva, Savas
December 06 Nikolaos, Nikos (Nicholas, Nick)
December 07 Amvrosios, Ambrosius (Ambrose)
December 09 Agias Annis, Anna
December 12 Spyridonos, Spyros
December 13 Efstratios / Loskias, Stratos, Stratis, Lucia
December 15 Eleftherios, Eleftheria, Lefteris
December 17 Daniel / Dionysios Zakunthos, Dionysos
December 18 Sevastianos & Zois
December 19 Aglaias
December 20 Ignatios (Ignatius)
December 21 Themistokleous, Ioulia, Julia, Julie
December 22 Anastasias, Anastasia
December 24 Evgenias, Evyenia
December 25 Christmas Day, Christos, Chrissa, Chrisanthi, Christina
December 26 Emmanouil / Synaxi Theotokos, Manolis, Manuella, Emma (Emmanuel, Manny)
December 27 Stefanos, Stephania (Steven, Stephen, Stefan, Stephanie)


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