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Allison Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

Learn about the name Allison including the meaning, gender, origin, popularity, and more.

Allison Overview

  • Meaning: Allison means truthful or noble.
  • Gender: Allison is traditionally a female’s name.
  • Origin: French, Irish.
  • Pronunciation: “AL-uh-sohn.”
  • Popularity: Very popular in the United States.
  • Nicknames: Al, Ali, Allie, and Ally.
  • Variations: Alison, Alicen, Alison, Alisoun, Alizon, Allyson.
  • Namesakes: Alison Brie, Allison Janney, and Allison Moorer.

What Does Allison Mean?

The name Allison means “noble” or “kind.” In the Teutonic tradition, it could be a masculine name and means “divine fame.”

When used in Irish languages, Allison means “truthful” or “honest.” In Greek, it is similar.

What is the Origin of the Name Allison?

Allison is a name that has remained popular for centuries, though it has undergone various spellings and variations. It may have started as a bastardization of the name Allen (1). The first usage was in medieval France, where it sometimes appeared as Alis. The “-son” was tacked on later as a form of possession by the father (for example, “Alister’s son”).

The derivative Alice is of Scottish origin and a name that has been used for centuries. Variations of this include Alise and Alicen.

How Popular is the Name Allison?

Allison as a baby girl’s name has consistently ranked in the top 100 since 1974 (2). It picked up in popularity in the 1950s and gained steam for a few decades. Allison has only begun to decline in the latter half of the 2010s.

The name Allison was most common in the years 2010-2016. It currently sits at the 82nd spot in 2021, having fallen only slightly since 2016.

In some Spanish-speaking countries, such as Portugal and Brazil, variations of the name Allison appear more commonly as a male name.

How Do I Pronounce Allison?

The name Allison is easy to pronounce. Break it down into three syllables in English: “AL-ih-sun.” The pronunciation of Allison rarely changes.

The emphasis of Allison falls on the first syllable. In American English, the pronunciation is [al-uh-suh n]. In British English, it’s almost identical, as /ˈæ.lɪ.sən/.

Is Allison a Boy or Girl Name?

Allison is primarily a girl name, though exceptions do exist. As a surname, Allison and its variations appear throughout centuries of European history for both genders (3).

Variations of Allison

There are several different ways to spell the name Allison. Most are due to the length of time the name has been around and whether it comes from European or South American countries.

  • Alicen (French)
  • Alison (Scottish)
  • Alisoun (Old English)
  • Alizon (French)
  • Allyson (American)

Nicknames for Allison

The name Allison can be shortened to a few different nicknames. It’s typical to use the first syllable when shortening Allison to a nickname.

  • Al
  • Ali
  • Allie
  • Ally
  • Lis
  • Lissie
  • Sonny

Similar Names to Allison

If you aren’t certain Allison is the right name for your little one, but you love the sound of it, here are some names with a similar meaning or sound to them. A few names on this list derive from ancient traditions that you may not be as familiar with. These include:

Middle Names for Allison

Since the name Allison has three syllables, a suitable middle name ideally has only one or two. Some good examples of middle names that go well with Allison are:

Sibling Names for Allison

There are plenty of beautiful names that sound good with Allison. Some popular sibling names include:

For a brother:

For a sister:

Famous People Named Allison

There are quite a few celebrities, musicians, and other famous personalities with the name Allison. All of them are females who live and work primarily in the U.S.

  • Alison Balsom: English trumpet player virtuoso who regularly tours.
  • Alison Brie: American actress who is known for “Community” and “Mad Men.”
  • Allison Iraheta: American singer and a 4th-place finalist on American Idol Season 8.
  • Allison Janney: American actress is known for “American Beauty” and “The Help.”
  • Allison Liddi-Brown: American television director and producer, known for “The Secret World of Alex Mack.”
  • Allison Moorer: American singer-songwriter, featured on “The Horse Whisperer” soundtrack.

Allison in Popular Culture

There are several examples of Allison in movies and TV. The name is often used for a female character.

  • Allison Argent: Character in tv series “Teen Wolf.”
  • Allison Blake: Character from the tv show “Eureka.”
  • Allison Cameron: Character from the tv show “House.”
  • Allison Hargreeves: Character in Netflix series “The Umbrella Academy.”
  • Allison Reynolds: Character in John Hughes movie “The Breakfast Club.”
  • Allison Taylor: Fictional president on the tv show “24.”

Allison FAQs

Here are some frequently asked questions about the name Allison.

Is Allison a Common Name in the UK?

Allison is not as common in the UK. There are Allisons to be found in Europe, but it’s mostly an American name nowadays (despite its Teutonic origins).

Is Allison a Biblical Name?

The name Allison does not derive from the Bible, nor is it a religious name. Its origin is mostly a designation of medieval lords over their children (“Allor’s son”).

Why Is Allison a Good Name?

What makes a name good is largely subjective. If focusing solely on the meaning of the name, truthful, noble, kind, and honest, then it is a wonderful name for your child. Additionally, people may find the name Allison sounds lovely, is easy to pronounce, and goes well with many other names, making it a great choice.

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