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Cora Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

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

Cora Overview

  • Meaning: Cora means girl or maiden.
  • Gender: Cora is overwhelmingly a girl’s name.
  • Origin: The name Cora originates from Greek.
  • Pronunciation: The name Cora is pronounced as KOR-ah.
  • Popularity: The name is quite popular, as it is part of the rising trend of using traditional vintage names for babies.
  • Nicknames: Cor, Cori, Coco.
  • Variations: Core, Kora, Korra, Kore.
  • Namesakes: Cora Brown, US state senator, Cora Seton, author.

What Does Cora Mean?

Cora is a given name that means ‘girl,’ ‘daughter,’ or ‘maiden’ in Greek and was often used as an epithet for the Greek goddess Persephone.

What is the Origin of the Name Cora?

Cora was first shown in Greek mythology as Κόρη when referring to Persephone. When the Greek myths became Latinized, the spelling and pronunciation of the name changed to Cora (1).

There are also some rarer claims that Cora is Gaelic in origin. It could be derived from the word còir, meaning right or just.

Either way, using Cora as a name is generally traced back to when Jean-François Marmontel wrote Les Incas, ou la destruction de l’empire du Pérouand used the name for one of the female characters (2).

After that instance, there were many other uses of the name in works and, therefore, uses in people’s real lives.

How Popular is the Name Cora?

Recently, the name Cora has risen in popularity. Overall, especially in the United States, there is a slight trend of reigniting the mass use of traditionally popular names (specifically from the late 1800s and early 1900s).

Since the early 2000s, Cora has been ranking higher on the most popular baby names. Currently, Cora was ranked 87th (3).

How Do I Pronounce Cora?

The name Cora is pronounced KOR-ah.

Is Cora a Boy or Girl Name?

Cora is a traditionally feminine name, given its association with a Greek goddess.

There are also only two years where Cora is in the top 1000 most popular baby boy names: 1900 and 1903 (4).

Variations of Cora

Cora can be spelled in a few different ways. In general, the name is most commonly seen as Cora, but there are also these variations:

  • Core (Irish)
  • Corin (Latin)
  • Corrina (Greek)
  • Corrine (French)
  • Kora (Variant spelling)
  • Korra (Variant spelling)
  • Kore (Variant spelling)

Nicknames for Cora

When thinking about what to name your child, it’s important to be prepared with cute nicknames!

We know that you’ll want to call your sweet little Cora something for short, so check out this list of potential nicknames to find some inspiration:

  • Core
  • Cori
  • Corey
  • Coco
  • Rara
  • Cors

Similar Names to Cora

Whether you’re still considering Cora or looking for something similar, we put together this list of similar names for a baby girl that could remind you of Cora.

If you’re looking for a name that looks and sounds like Cora, keeping it short and sweet, check out these:

Or if you love the names that start with C, try out some of these:

Middle Names for Cora

Because Cora is such a gorgeous, vintage name, it deserves a beautiful, old-fashioned middle name to accompany it. If you’re stuck on what to use as your Cora’s middle name, look no further:

Sibling Names for Cora

If Cora is already a part of your family, you may be looking for names that sound nice for her little brother or sister. We know it’s essential to have a sibling name that flows well, so we’ve put together this list of sibling names for Cora:

For a brother:

For a sister:

Famous People Named Cora

There are quite a few famous people named Cora, and we’ve listed some of the most well-known here:

  • Cora Amalia Castilla: Mexican politician and activist.
  • Cora Brown: First African-American woman elected to a U.S. state senate.
  • Cora Emmanuel: French fashion model.
  • Cora Seton: American author.
  • Cora Stuart Wheeler: American poet and author.
  • Cora Taylor: American singer, also known as Koko Taylor.
  • Cora Wilson Stewart: American social reformer and educator.

Cora in Popular Culture

In popular culture, we can also find many beloved Coras. Here are just a few:

  • Cora Crawley: Character from Downton Abbey.
  • Cora Dithers: Character from the comic strip Blondie.
  • Cora Mills: Character from Once Upon a Time, also known as the Queen of Hearts)
  • Cora Hale: Character from Teen Wolf.
  • Korra: Character from The Legend of Korra.

Cora FAQs

Here are the some of the most frequently asked questions about the name Cora:

What Is the Name Cora Short For?

The name Cora can be stand-alone, and it often is. However, in some instances, the name is short for Corina or Cordelia.

Is Cora an Irish Name?

Cora can possibly be traced back to the Gaelic word còir, but this is likely a coincidence.

Cora is generally accepted to be Greek in origin.

What Is Cora the Goddess Of?

Cora was used as the epithet for the Greek goddess Persephone, and she was the goddess queen of the Underworld. Persephone was also considered the goddess of vegetation and spring growth.

Because Cora is used for Persephone, the name Cora also ties into these symbols.

Does Cora Mean Heart?

Cora sounds quite similar to both the French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian words for the heart: ‘cœur,’ ‘corazón,’ ‘coração,’ and ‘coure,’ respectively.

But these phonetic similarities do not have much to do with the name’s original meaning; Cora means maiden, not the heart.

Is Cora a Boy or Girl Name?

Cora is generally a name given to a girl, but there are some rare instances of the name being used for boys.

Additionally, the name is sometimes a surname, being given to people of all genders.

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