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Lucian Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

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

Lucian Overview

  • Meaning: The name Lucian is Latin for “Light.”
  • Gender: Lucian is traditionally used as a masculine name.
  • Origin: Latin-speaking nations such as Italy and Romania.
  • Pronunciation: “LOO-shin” or “LOO-she-in.”
  • Popularity: Lucian is a popular name.
  • Nicknames: Luca, Lucy, Luka, Lulu, Lu.
  • Variations: Lucianos, Lucien, Lucio, Lucius.
  • Namesakes: Lucian of Samosata.

What Does Lucian Mean?

Lucian is one of the oldest names stemming far back into Latin. Lucian translates to “Light” in Latin.

Lucian can also be read as “Shining Light” for a more specific reading. The translation stems from the Latin words “lux” and “lucere,” which mean “light” and “to shine” respectively. The name is also an anglicized version of the Roman male names “Lucius” and “Lucianus.”

Most typically consider Lucian a more refined version of “Lucius.” Of the many Latin boy names that start with Lu-, Lucian is arguably the most popular.

Lucian is a name found in many nations. Italy, France, and many other nations in Europe have their versions. It also is frequently found amongst science fiction fans due to its connection to Lucian of Samosata (1).

What Is the Origin of the Name Lucian?

Lucian has Latin origins, though a precise origin can’t be determined (2). Given that it translates to “Light,” it’s likely that it was given for sentimental reasons.

Although Lucian has Latin origins, it has remained relatively unchanged through this translation. The name remains popular in modern times and is given primarily to masculine children. Multiple variations bridge the gaps between genders and nations as well.

How Popular is the Name Lucian?

Lucian is relatively popular in some parts of the world and unused in others (3). It’s dominantly a European name and is more common around nations that have historically spoken Latin, such as Italy.

Nations like Lichtenstein have seen the name rise to prominence. Overall, it is considered a popular name amongst males.

How Do I Pronounce Lucian?

Lucian is pronounced in different ways depending on the nation, accent, and emphasis. The most common is a two-syllable pronunciation, “LOO-shin.” The three-syllable pronunciation, “LOO-she-in” is also common.

Is Lucian a Boy or Girl Name?

Traditionally speaking, Lucian is a masculine name. Some variants, such as Lucille or Lucy, are used for feminine individuals instead.

Variations of Lucian

Due to the name’s age, there are many variants of Lucian. Here are some of the many you may find.

Nicknames for Lucian

Lucian has a few common nicknames, including but not limited to the following names.

  • Cian
  • Lu
  • Luc
  • Luca
  • Lucy
  • Luka
  • Lulu

Similar Names to Lucian

Because the name Lucian is found in many languages, there are many similar names. Here are a few names you are likely to find.

Middle Names for Lucian

The name Lucian often pairs with names equal to or longer than itself. Alliteration is also common. Here’s a brief list of examples of middle names that work well with Lucian.

Sibling Names for Lucian

For sibling names, you have much greater freedom to name your child anything you’d like. In the case of twins, consider names that are similar to each other.

Famous People Named Lucian

Many of the most famous people named Lucian are from the 20th century. However, some of the name-bearers are from the second and third centuries.

  • Lucian of Antioch: Christian theologian and saint.
  • Lucian Blaga: Christian martyr and saint.
  • Lucian Bute: Contemporary Romanian-Canadian Boxer
  • Lucian of Chester: Christian monk, and author of De Laude Cestrie (“On the Glory of Chester”).
  • Lucian Freud: Grandson of Sigmund Freud, notable painter.
  • Lucian Georgevici: Romanian politican.
  • Lucian of Samosata: Satirist and Rhetorician, considered the “father of Science-Fiction.”

Lucian in Popular Culture

In the spelling of Lucian, there aren’t many popular culture references. Interestingly, the name Lucien returns several more. Here are some of the notable references for Lucian.

  • Fort San Lucien, Malta: A Maltese fort named for Saint Lucian.
  • Lucian (Pokémon): A member of the Sinnoh Elite Four.
  • Lucian (League of Legends): Marksman Sentinel in the hit MOBA League of Legends.
  • Lucian (The 39 Clues): A group of stealth-focused saboteurs and spies.
  • Lucian (Lunar crater): A small impact crater on the moon in the northeast part of Mare Tranquillatis, named after Lucian of Samosata.
  • Lucian Connally (Longmire): Important character in Longmire, the predecessor to Walt Longmire and former sheriff.

Lucian FAQs

There are still plenty of mysteries surrounding such an old name! Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about the name Lucian.

Is Lucian a Rare Name?

Lucian is far from the most common name, but it’s certainly not rare. As of 2021, the Social Security Administration has the name listed as 595th (4). The previous year, Lucian was 640th, marking a large jump in popularity.

Is Lucian More Popular Than Lucien?

In practice, Lucian is a significantly more popular name. However, in popular culture, there are many notable Luciens despite it not being common.

Lucian is also more popular in North America than in many parts of Europe. The -an spelling remains more popular regardless of where in the world you tally the votes. Overall, Lucien is a rarely-used name.

One notable Lucien is an antagonist in the second campaign of the hit Dungeons & Dragons show Critical Role. The character is among the most popular in fantasy at present, especially amongst the D&D Fandom.

Is Lucian a Religious Name?

Though the name is linked with several Christian figures, the name is not considered religious. The Latin translation has nothing to do with religion as well.

What Nation Does the Name Lucian Stem From?

The name Lucian does not stem from a specific nation but is most common in Latin-speaking nations. Because of this, nations like Italy and Romania are often seen as the origin point for Lucian. The most common namesake is Lucian of Samosata.

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