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Aurora Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

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

Aurora Overview

  • Meaning: Aurora can mean dawn. Aurora is also the light occurrence seen at the south and north poles, the aurora borealis.
  • Gender: Aurora is traditionally feminine.
  • Origin: Aurora originates from the Latin word for dawn. It was first used as a name by Romans for their goddess of dawn. It slowly traveled from Europe to the English world.
  • Pronunciation: You can pronounce Aurora as “ah-ROOR-uh.”
  • Popularity: Aurora has been steadily increasing in popularity and is now in the top 100 names in the US.
  • Nicknames: Ari, Ora, Rara, Ray, Roar, Rory.
  • Variations: Aurore, Avrora.
  • Namesakes: Aurora Reyes Flores, Mexican muralist painter.

Aurora Name Meaning

Aurora is a beautiful name with an evocative meaning and origin. The name is pleasant to the ear and rolls off the tongue. It’s no wonder that this name has been around since ancient Roman times and is only getting more popular.

What Does Aurora Mean?

Aurora is an ethereal name, which according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, has two different meanings. The name either means a Roman goddess of dawn or a general term for a spectacular lighting event in the Earth’s upper atmosphere.

The Roman goddess was the bringer of dawn, which is no surprise as the Latin word for dawn was Aurōra (1).

The light occurrence is most famously known as the aurora borealis, a beautiful display of blue and green lights that you can see in the Arctic and Antarctic. These vibrant lights are a stunning visual of the sun’s wind energy reaching the earth’s magnetic field (2).

Either way, Aurora has its meaning rooted in beauty and things that are out of human reach. Bring some of that beauty into your life by choosing the name Aurora.

What Is the Origin of the Name Aurora?

Aurora originates from the Latin word for dawn, Aurōra. This word eventually became a name when the Romans began to use it for their goddess of dawn, Aurora.

Since it had Latin origins, Aurora’s use began in European countries and eventually came to the English world.

This goddess would bring the sun with her every morning. She’s a feature character in a few Roman mythological tales.

In modern use, Aurora as a name has a prominent association with “Sleeping Beauty.” Ironically, Aurora is the napping princess who misses many dawns in her slumber as she waits for true love.

How Popular Is the Name Aurora?

Aurora is a name that is rising in popularity. According to the Social Security Administration, Aurora has had a meteoric rise from being the 488th most popular name to the 36th (3).

Aurora was always pretty well-regarded, but over the years has steadily risen in use. As of now, Aurora is considered a very popular name. The name has stayed atop the 100 most popular names since 2015.

Before modernity, it was likely rare. Although the records are hard to find, Aurora didn’t seem to be used much in Europe in the 1600s. It briefly rose to fame in France in the 70s and 80s.

Aurora is only a popular name choice for girls, and it is almost entirely nonexistent as a choice for boys.

How Do I Pronounce Aurora?

Since Aurora can be defined as a specific phenomenon and originates from Latin words, it has only one proper pronunciation.

Aurora is pronounced “ah-ROOR-uh” with an emphasis on the middle syllables.

Is Aurora a Boy or Girl Name?

Aurora is a name that is traditionally for girls. It usually brings to mind either the Roman goddess or the Disney princess from “Sleeping Beauty.”

Aurora is so rare a name for boys that there is no recorded data on its popularity.

Variations of Aurora

There are only two main variations for Aurora that relate to a region:

  • Aurore (French)
  • Avrora (Russian, Ukrainian)

Nicknames for Aurora

Aurora may not seem like a name that would have many nicknames, but you can shorten it in plenty of cute ways:

  • Ari
  • Auri
  • Ora
  • Orie
  • Rara
  • Ray
  • Ro
  • Roar
  • Rory

Similar Names to Aurora

If you like Aurora, but it doesn’t seem the exact right fit, some of these names might suit you better:

Middle Names for Aurora

Aurora is a beautiful first name, so you might be overwhelmed at first in choosing a good middle name to match. Don’t worry! Here are some middle names that flow nicely or have complimentary meanings to Aurora:

Sibling Names for Aurora

Aurora has plenty of good pairings for siblings. Whether you’re planning ahead or you’ve already named one of your kids Aurora, here are some ideas to start:

Famous People Named Aurora

Curious about famous people who share the name Aurora? Despite the rising popularity of the name, not many modern celebrities have shared the name. Still, here are some famous Auroras:

  • Aurora Aksnes: Norwegian singer.
  • Aurora Arias: Dominican Republican journalist, astrologer, and writer.
  • Aurora Browne: Canadian comedian and actress.
  • Aurora Cáceres: Peruvian-European writer accredited with the modernismo literary movement.
  • Aurora Reyes Flores: Mexican painter who is part of the Mexican muralism movement.
  • Aurora Straus: Puerto Rican poet and writer.
  • Aurora Pijuan: Filipino winner of the 1970 Miss International Beauty pageant.
  • Aurora Straus: American racecar driver.

Aurora in Popular Culture

Aurora originated in Roman mythology, so it’s no surprise that we still commonly use it as a name for many cultural icons. Here are a few fictional Aurora’s you may know:

  • Aurora: A Marvel character in the comics “Alpha Flight.”
  • Aurora: An original Disney princess from “Sleeping Beauty.”
  • Aurora: The main character of the video game “Child of Light.”
  • Aurora Decker-Morningstar: The daughter of characters in the sixth season of the show “Lucifer.”
  • Aurora Floyd: The titular character of Mary Elizabeth Braddon’s novel.
  • Aurora Lane: A character in the 2016 film “Passengers.”
  • Aurora Sinistra: The prophetic astronomy teacher in “Harry Potter.”

Aurora FAQs

Here are some commonly asked questions about the name Aurora.

Does the Name Aurora Have Any Associations?

Aurora is often considered to be symbolic of the sky. That connection can be traced back to the Roman goddess of dawn.

Did Sleeping Beauty Boost the Name Aurora’s Popularity?

There’s no question that the Disney movie is popular. Indeed, the Disney princess can often be seen at Disney’s amusement parks. If the classic is ever remade, we wouldn’t be surprised if there was a surge in popularity.

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