Even with the strides in modern feminism in the past 100 years, it can feel like most of the baby girl names out there are a little dated.
I know it feels like half of our girl names just mean “pretty,” and while that’s great, sometimes you want something a little more proactive for your baby girl’s name. If you’re looking for something a little more powerful, then you’ve come to the right place.
Whether you want to draw inspiration from the names of mythological goddesses or an ancient female warrior, or you want something a little more modern, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for my favorite strong baby girl names.
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Popular Strong Girl Names
The first of our tough girl names is in fact from ancient Hebrew. Adira, which is also found in the masculine form Adir, is a Hebrew name that’s popular among Israelis and international Jews alike, and it actually has multiple powerful meanings, as it means “great,” “powerful,” “or mighty”
Besides having the Greek meaning “strong in wrath” – there’s nothing wrong with embracing your anger every now and then – Alecemen will be best known to Greek mythology enthusiasts (and Disney lovers) as the mother of Hercules. What says “strong woman” more than being the mother of a literal demi-god?
Alessia is the Italian feminine version of the Greek name Alexander, popularized by the famous conqueror Alexander the Great. The name’s original meaning is “defender,” and it’s the perfect name to make sure your little girl is a defending warrior who knows how to stand up and protect the things that are important to her.
This is one of the most popular strong girl names out there, and its etymology is pretty obvious. Like Alessia, it means “defender” and honestly, I think that this female version of Alexander has even more power to it than the male version.
The first English-origin name on our list, Audrey is a timeless popular name that literally means “noble” or “strength.” Give your baby girl some noble strength by naming her Audrey.
Ayesha is an incredibly popular Arabic name, and since there are more than half a billion Arabic speakers in the world, that makes this name, which means, “living” one of the most popular strong girl names in the world. Ayesha is sure to instill a certain sustaining healing power in your baby girl.
Any Harry Potter fan recognized this name immediately. Like many of J.K. Rowling’s character names, the name Bellatrix comes from Latin, and literally means female warrior. While Bellatrix Lestrange is probably not someone you want your little girl emulating, there’s something undeniably captivating about the character, and we just might see a lot more Bellatrixes out there in the coming years.
This Irish name translates to “noble” or “power,” and it’s the perfect strong girl’s name for anyone with some Irish heritage and a baby girl on the way.
While its also found in Germanic languages, the name Bridget originated in Irish culture from Saint Bridget of Kildare, who was held in such high esteem that she was dubbed “Mary of the Gael.” There is also an Irish goddess of the same name, and this name literally means “exalted one.”
Derived from the male German name “Carl,” Carla means “free woman,” and it’s an amazing name to guarantee that your baby girl is a strong and independent free-thinker.
Carole is another name meaning “Free woman;” it’s the French and feminine version of the Latin-origin Carolus, which is itself the source of the name Charles. This is a great alternative to Carla if you prefer the sound of the lovely French language.
The last of our strong girl names meaning “free woman,” Charlotte is the French, female variation of the name Charles, and it boasts a strong meaning, the beautiful french “Ch” sound, and timeless popularity, making this name an easy choice for any parent looking for strong baby girl names.
Claudette is the female version of Claudius, who was the fourth Roman emperor. The emperor Claudius also rose to his rank despite family ridicule and overcame the adversity of having a limp. Your baby girl Claudette will know that nothing is impossible.
Erica is the feminine version of the Old Norse name Eric, which is a regal name that means “eternal ruler.” Pokemon fans will also love this name, as Erica was the name of the gym leader at the all-female gym.
The actual meaning of Fianna is unknown, which adds to the mysterious and noble strength of this name. In Irish mythology, Fianna was based on the historical bands formed in medieval Ireland.
Origin: Old Norse
Freja is an Old Norse name meaning “lady” or “noblewoman,” and it’s also the name of the goddess of love in Norse mythology.
Gabriella is the feminine version of the name Gabriel, which means “God is my strength.” Gabriel is also the name of the angel who appeared to both Abraham and his nephew Lot at different.
While the exact translation of this beautiful Welsh name actually doesn’t seem to be known, one possible understanding of the etymology is “female chief.” That’s a great meaning. Plus, Generys just sounds cool.
“Harriet is the female version of Henry, a historic name of kings that means “powerful ruler.” Plus, there are few figures in history more worthy of being the namesake for your baby girl than abolitionist Harriet Tubman.
Origin: Old Norse
Hilda is one of the best fierce girl names out there. The Old Norse culture had no problem with powerful women, and they’ve given us some great female warrior names. This name literally means “maid of battle.”
Origin: Old English and Gaelic
Kendra is a multifaceted name with a scattered etymology and numerous meanings. This British-Isles-hailing name can either mean “knowing” “greatest champion” or “wise ruler.” And if you’re a fan of the rapper Kendrick Lamar, this name is even better.
Matilda is an English name that means strength in battle. And if you want your baby girl to embrace knowledge rather than strength, just think of the beloved movie Matilda.
While this name doesn’t have a particularly powerful meaning – it translates to “friend,” there have been multiple admirable Ruths throughout history that make this a great name for your little girl. Ruth Bader Ginsberg was a feminist trailblazer, while Ruth from the Bible was the mother of kings. And if you’re a baseball fan, this name’s connection to Babe Ruth certainly doesn’t hurt.
Simone is the female version of Simon, which is itself the English version of the Hebrew name Shimon, one of the tribes of Jacob. With this name, your baby girl will be the matriarch of a powerful and numerous tribe.
Yael is a popular Hebrew and Israeli name that means ibex, and the original Yael, quite the rebellious woman, killed a Canaanite general by driving a tent peg through his skull. That’s a pretty badass girl’s name.
Old-Fashioned Strong Girl names
Names are constantly going through trends and phases, and this might be even more the case with baby girl names. But sometimes you don’t want to just go with the flow, and you want a name strong girl’s name that’s stood the test of time. If that’s the case, then this is the section for you. Here are our favorite old-fashioned strong girl names, because sometimes an oldie is a goodie.
Arie, related to the name Aryeh, translates to “lion” in Hebrew. Modern Hebrew has a tendency towards unisex names, and you can turn pretty much any Hebrew boy’s name into a girl’s name, so turn Aryeh into a girl’s name and make your daughter a lioness. Remember, the lioness is the one who does the hunting.
Another female name that comes from a Roman emperor, August, from the emperor Augustus, means “venerable” or “exalted one” in Latin. This is a regal name that’s perfect for your baby girl.
Aurelia is a beautiful Greek-origin name that translates to “gilded” or “golden.” Show your baby girl how precious she is with this golden girl’s name.
Constance is a Latin-based name meaning “steadfast” or “constant.” This is a strong girl’s name that will teach your daughter the value of perseverance.
Origin: Greek, English, and Irish
This name really is the most versatile girl’s name on our list. It has beautiful meanings in three different languages. In Greek, this name refers to the island birthplace of the twin gods Artemis and Apollo, while in English it means “of the nobility.” Finally, in Irish, Delia means “daughter of the sea.” Three different meanings, all powerful in their own way.
Erma is an English name meaning “whole.” While the meaning of this name is a little understated, in a world where young girls have so many unfair expectations thrust upon them, this name can be a powerful reminder to your baby girl that they’re whole and perfect just the way they are.
Dolly, not to be confused with the diminutive of “doll,” means “gift of God.” That’s a pretty powerful name, and it doesn’t hurt that Dolly Parton is a feminist icon and a positive role model for any little girl.
Origin: Old English
Edith is a majestic name that means both “fortune” and “war,” making this name perfect for your little battle heroine. Plus, its historical popularity among royalty adds some power to the name.
Ethel literally means “noble,” which is a multi-faceted word up to your interpretation. Will your daughter be upper-class nobility, or noble, kind, and loyal? Or, of course, she could be both.
Another Greek name on our list, Eunice translates to “victory,” and this is a powerful name that will help your daughter embrace her competitive side a little bit.
Gertrude is an elegant German name meaning “spear of strength.” Make a real battle woman out of your baby girl with this name.
In ancient Greek mythology, Helen of Troy was the beautiful queen over whom entire wars were fought. On a more recent note, Helen Maroulis is a modern-day Olympian who’s won multiple world titles in women’s wrestling, including the first-ever Olympic gold for the United States in 2016. Helen is a name of royalty and warriors alike.
Hester Prynne from The Scarlet Letter is the original rebellious woman. This Latin name, meaning “star,” is the perfect female name for your baby girl if you want her to know that well-behaved women seldom make history.
Kaimana is a beautiful Hawaiian meaning “sea of power.” This name is perfect for any Hawaiian mother who wants to embrace their heritage and give their baby girl a name that embodies the strength of mother nature.
Lois has the short and sweet meaning of “better.” This name will teach your daughter to aim high and not settle for second place.
Aramaic is an ancient language that has influenced Hebrew, Arabic, and other Semitic languages. Martha means “lady,” and those with a nerdier side will love this name, as its the name of Batman’s mother, and the Doctor’s companion Martha, who was one of the most competent and proactive companions of the beloved sci-fi series.
Millicent is a German name meaning “strong worker.” This is a great name to teach your daughter she doesn’t have to conform to dainty perceptions of femininity and that she shouldn’t be afraid to get her hands dirty.
Origin: Old English
Mildred is an old-fashioned name with the beautiful meaning of “gentle strength.” This is a great moniker to bestow upon your baby girl to teach her that there’s strength in kindness, and that, sometimes, a gentle strength is more impressive than being the most boisterous and aggressive person in the room.
Any Harry Potter fanatic will recognize Minerva as the first name of the strict-but-king Professor McGonagall. JK Rowling made a good choice when she picked this lovable Transfiguration professor’s name, as Minerva means “intellect.” Teach your daughter that knowledge is power with this old-school Latin name.
One of the oldest still-spoken languages, Arabic is a beautiful language with some incredibly meaningful names. Qadir might be my favorite, as this name literally means “able,” or “capable.” Teach your strong baby girl from day one that nothing is impossible.
Sophronia is an eloquent name coming from Greek that means “sensible.” Even more than knowledge, wisdom is power. Teach your daughter that thinking her way through things takes more strength than just powering through with her head down.
Tillie is short for Matilda, and like its long-form namesake, this cute nickname means “strength in battle.”
Despite its intimidating length and sound that conjures up images of a fierce queen, Tryphena is a lovely name that means “gentle.” There’s strength in kindness.
Vesta is a roman name that means “hearth,” and the name of a goddess that’s symbolized by eternal fire. What’s stronger than an eternal source of heat and energy?
Besides being the name of many powerful queens, Victoria, perhaps obviously, shares an origin with the English word “victory.” This is a name that’s powerful both in theory and in practice.
Beautiful & Elegant Strong Girl Names
Femininity and strength don’t have to be opposites, and you don’t have to be weak to be beautiful. With that in mind, here are our favorite strong girl names that are beautiful and elegant, so your daughter can have the best of both worlds.
Amira is a lovely name that is also the feminine version of the Arabic word for “commander.” Your baby Amira will be a natural-born leader.
I’m not sure there’s a more powerful name out there than Athena. This Greek goddess claimed strategy, wisdom, and battle tactics as her domain. There’s not much more to say about this name.
Eloise is a lovely French name meaning “famous warrior.” This name is the perfect combination of beauty and brawn.
This lovely Greek name really exemplifies feminist energy in its rather long English meaning of “the one who shines and excels over men.” Raise a feminist trailblazer by naming your daughter Cassandra.
Popularized by the character from Les Mis, the lovely name Cosette means “victorious.”
Elowyn is a lovely name that means “oaktree.” Oaktrees are known for their long life and sturdiness, and they’re the perfect namesake for your resilient daughter.
Emmeline is another German name that means “work.” German seems to be the language of choice if you want a tough daughter who’s not afraid to get her hands dirty.
Faye comes from the French word for “fairy.” While fairies aren’t exactly thought of as strong, there are many different interpretations of these magical creatures, and some of them are downright vicious.
The perfect lovely name for French parents, Francesca literally means just that: French. Of course, it also means “free person,” and will help your baby girl embrace some freedom, exploration, and initiative.
Irene literally means “peace,” and it also refers to the goddess of peace. What’s more beautiful and powerful than being the goddess of peace?
In Greek mythology, Iris is the Greek goddess of the rainbow. This name channels the energy and beauty of light, rain, and rainbows.
Leonora means “light” in Greek, and its similar to the Hebrew names Leora and Eliora, which both mean “her light to me.”
This lovely name is perfect for anyone of Maori heritage, as Maia translates to “brave warrior” or “confident.” Maia gives you two powerful and beautiful meanings for the price of one.
If you remember any of your intro Italian classes from high school, you might know that “bella” means pretty, but combined with “mira,” the lovely Italian name Mirabella literally means wonderful.
Morgan is a powerful and eloquent Welsh name meaning “sea warrior.” If you love the beach and the water, then this is the perfect baby name for you.
Myla is a Latin name meaning “soldier.” This is the perfect name if you want your daughter to know that some things are worth fighting for.
Origin: French and Sanskrit
Raine boasts claims to two very different but equally beautiful languages: French and Sanskrit. In French, Riane literally means “queen, while in Sanskrit is means “she is singing.” Channel artistic energy and regality in one by naming your daughter Raine.
Another Welsh name, Rhiannon, which is undeniably similar to the name of the singer Rhianna, means “divine queen.”
Sasha is actually a Russian unisex name that is their version of Alexander. As such, just like the original Greek, this lovely and strong name means “defender.”
Seraphina is a beautiful, powerful, and intimidating name that means “fiery” or “burning.” You’re sure to raise a rebellious, energetic, empowered firebrand with this name.
Shannon is a popular girl’s name in many English-speaking countries that comes from the longest river in Ireland, as well as a Celtic goddess of the same name. Embrace your Irish culture with this powerful name.
Sophia is yet another Greek name that means “wisdom.” The Greeks really appreciated the power of knowledge.
Valentina is a Latin name that literally means “strength.” It doesn’t get much stronger than that.
Vivian is a lovely Latin name that translates to “lively.” Let your daughter know she doesn’t ever have to tone herself down.
The last name on this portion of our list, Wilma translates to “protection.” Teach your daughter to use her strength to protect the things that matter.
Strong Female Warrior Names Inspired by Heroines
Fiction, fantasy, and mythology are full of damsels in distress, and its time to give the spotlight to some of the tough and strong female warriors out there. If you want to name your daughter after a natural-born fighter, then these are the names for you. Who knows, your daughter might just grow up to be the next big UFC champion
Arya means “noble one,” but most people will recognize it as the name as the ferocious elf warrior from Christopher Paolini’s “Inheritance” fantasy series, or the beloved character from Game of Thrones.
Artemis is the goddess of the moon and of the hunt. This is a powerful name that takes command over a celestial body and embraces pursuit in the night.
Few shows left their mark on the 90’s like Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Embrace this feminist fighter by naming your daughter Buffy.
Bellona is the Roman goddess of war, and your baby Bellona is sure to be a force to be reckoned with.
Origin: Old Norse
Brenda is an Old Norse name that means sword. Everyone will know your daughter has an edge to her.
Brielle literally means warrior of god. This is the perfect name for a kind but ferocious girl who will only fight when necessary.
Camilla was a feared warrior from Roman mythology. This is a great name to pay homage to the female fighting spirit.
The name Catherin originally comes from the Greek word karthoros, which means “pure.” Additionally, Catherine the Great, emperesss of Russia, was not a woman to be trifled with, and she overthrew her own husband out of disdain for his incompetence.
The Roman counterpart to Artemis, Diana is also the secret identity of Wonder Woman. Embrace mythological strength with this name.
Origin: Old Norse
Since “gunn” and “hild” both mean “war,” this name would, technically, literally translate to “war war.” But that doesn’t exactly sound cool, so it’s easier to explain this name as meaning war or battle.
Gwendolen is a Welsh name meaning “fair,” “circle,” or “bow,” but it’s also the name of the wife of the powerful magician Merlin from the legends of King Arthur.
Joan of Arc was a passionate revolutionary who led the French in battle against the English at the young age of fifteen.
The name Katniss actually refers to an aquatic plant, but most people now will associate it with The Hunger Games. Few lines are as iconic in 2010’s fiction as “I Volunteer as Tribute!” and Katniss Everdeen was an empowered and selfless hero who used her archery skills to fight for what’s right.
Larasati is a beautiful Indonesian name that means “responsible and firm.” Because being a warrior doesn’t mean charging into every battle without thinking.
While this name’s translation is a bit of a mouthful, it’s certainly powerful. Llewella literally means “one whose lion-like bravery shines bright.”
In Irish Mythology, Maeve was the warrior queen of Connacht. She’s also a popular character from the hit Netflix series “Sex Ed” who overcame adversity and difficult circumstances to accomplish her goals.
Michonne was a popular character from the graphic novels and TV show “The Walking Dead.” This quiet and mysterious character was always armed with her trusty katana to behead any zombies that stood in her way.
The popular Disney movie Mulan is rooted in ancient Chiense folklore. This female warrior is the perfect namesake for any young Chinese girl.
“Storm” would be a strong girl’s name even without its connection to the powerful woman hero from the X-Men comics, but with the combination of the two, this name is perfect for any nature lover or comic book fan.
Origin: Old Norse
The female version of Thor, which means Thunder. Of course, Thor is also the Nordic god of thunder and the popular Marvel superhero. Marvel fans, mythology nerds, and anyone of Nordic heritage will love this name.
While trinity simply means “three” in Latin, this name might be more commonly associated with the determined female revolutionary from The Matrix film series.
Xena is Greek for “stranger,” but it’s also the name of The Warrior Princess. Xena: Warrior Princess is one of the biggest cult-following shows from the 90s, and it was particularly known for its strong and empowered female main character, Xena.
Yehudit is the feminine form of Yehuda, and this name literally means “Jew.” In the story of Hannukah, Yehudit took matters into her own hands and slew a major Greek general.
This strong Arabic name gets straight to the point, and it simply means “might” or “power.”
Origin: English and Spanish
Our final name means “grey fighting maid.” Video game fanatics will love this name, and contrary to other video game princesses like Princess Peach, the titular character of the Legend of Zelda series is no damsel in distress.
That brings us to the end of our list. We hope we helped you find the empowered female name that you’re looking for. Good luck!