The Meaning & Origin of the Name Shirley

Shirley is an English girl name, which has 7 letters.

Shirley is a name of English origin, derived from the Old English term ‘scir leah’, which means ‘bright meadow’. It is often seen as a name associated with cheerfulness, innocence and beauty.

Alternate Meaning Bright meadow

Origin or Current Usage English

Gender F


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Detailed Information About The Name Shirley

The name "Shirley" is of English origin and has both a feminine and masculine usage. It is derived from the Old English surname "Sirele," which means "bright meadow" or "clearing on the bank." The name first appeared as a given name in the 18th century and gained popularity in the 19th century, particularly among English-speaking countries.

In terms of gender distribution, "Shirley" has historically been more commonly used as a female name, although it has been given to males as well. In recent years, its usage as a masculine name has declined significantly, and it is now predominantly used for girls.

One of the most well-known individuals with the name "Shirley" is Shirley Temple, an American actress, singer, and diplomat. She gained immense fame as a child star during the 1930s and went on to become a successful adult actress, starring in numerous films and receiving several awards.

Another notable person named Shirley is Shirley Chisholm, an American politician and educator. In 1968, she became the first African American woman elected to the United States Congress and later made history again by being the first black major-party candidate for President of the United States in 1972.

The name "Shirley" has also been used in various works of literature and media. For instance, the famous novel "Anne of Green Gables" by Lucy Maud Montgomery features a character named Diana Shirley, who is the best friend of the protagonist, Anne Shirley. This novel, along with its sequels, has become a beloved classic in English literature.

In conclusion, the name "Shirley" has a rich history and cultural significance. With its roots in Old English and its association with notable figures in politics, entertainment, and literature, "Shirley" has become a popular and recognizable name in modern society.

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