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Sienna Name Meaning: Origin, Popularity & Nicknames

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

Sienna Overview

  • Meaning: Sienna means ochre, yellow-brown.
  • Gender: Sienna is a unisex name, but more girls use it than boys.
  • Origin: Italian phrase terra di Siena, or “Siena earth,” deriving from Latin.
  • Pronunciation: Pronounce Sienna, “see-EH-nuh.”
  • Popularity: The name is currently moderately popular, although it has become slightly less popular in the last decade.
  • Nicknames: Ena, Sen, Sisi, Sissy, and See.
  • Variations: Siena, Senna, Sena, and Sina.
  • Namesakes: Sienna Elizabeth Mapelli Mozzi, Sienna Guylorry.

Sienna is a beautiful name that has an exotic, Italian appeal. If you heard the name, you are probably wondering what does Sienna mean? Let us find out below.

What Does Sienna Mean?

Sienna means yellow or reddish-brown, which is a specific shade of ochre. It also refers to the pigment used to make sienna-colored paint that is usually made from ferruginous earth and clay containing oxides of iron and manganese.

Sienna is an amber color that is used in painting.

What Is the Origin of the Name Sienna?

The name Sienna comes from the word for the color “sienna,” which refers to a yellow or reddish-brown pigment.

Although the first record of the specific color name in English occurred in 1760, usage of the term terra di Siena in the original Italian to refer to the color’s namesake pigment is much older.

Terra di Siena translates as “Siena earth,” and refers to the mineral-rich dirt and clay found in and around the Italian city of Sienna, which was the primary source of the pigment used in the making of sienna paint for the majority of the color’s history.

The city-state’s name, Siena, is believed to be derived from the Latin boy name Senius according to local legend, but this etymology cannot be proven. Senius is the legendary founder of Siena, alongside Aschius.

The brothers were sons of legendary hero Remus and nephews of Romulus. Siena is rich in ancient history and myth.

How Popular is the Name Sienna?

At present, Sienna is a reasonably popular name. It typically hovers somewhere within the range of the top two hundred most popular names for baby girls in the United States, albeit usually on the lower end of that list. It rarely makes it higher than the last quarter of the list.

Since it first appeared on name charts in the United States in statistically significant numbers in 1995, the name Sienna has grown slowly in popularity, and it eventually peaked in 2020, before once more beginning to decline in frequency.

It has also shown notable popularity as a girl’s name in recent generations in the United Kingdom. Although we cannot guess the exact reason, it may be that the Italian-sounding name is a favorite of Brits who want to break with more traditional names.

How Do I Pronounce Sienna?

You pronounce Sienna, “see-EH-nuh,” the same as the color that the name is derived from.

Common mispronunciations include “SIGH-ehn-uh”, due to misinterpreting the first syllable, and “seh-NUH”, which occurs when the “i” is mistakenly read as silent. However, if you’re thinking of giving your child this name, mispronunciations should not be a deterrent because they are rare.

Is Sienna a Boy or Girl Name?

While Sienna is a unisex name, suitable for any gender, in the United States it is more commonly used for girls. The use of Sienna as a masculine or gender-neutral name is more often found in Europe, particularly in Italy.

However, if you are fond of the name and expecting a baby boy, you can still use the name with a slightly different spelling, like Siena.

Variations of Sienna

Because Sienna does not translate well to most languages, known variations of the name are relatively uncommon. Due to the constantly evolving nature of human language, variations of the name will likely emerge. Some of the current variations include:

  • Sena (Italian)
  • Senna (English, Italian)
  • Siena (English)
  • Sina (Italian, Romanian, Greek)

Nicknames for Sienna

Because it is a short name, most nicknames for the name Sienna involve a simple blurring or shortening of the word. Use your creativity or find a nickname for your baby girl that shows her unique character! Sienna’s nicknames include:

  • Ena
  • Cici
  • Nenna
  • See
  • Sen
  • Sien
  • Sisi
  • Sissy

Similar Names to Sienna

Because of the name’s provenience, names with similar meanings as Sienna include:

Middle Names for Sienna

There are not many middle names that would be notably inappropriate with the given name Sienna.

If you want to choose a middle name for Sienna, you can feel at ease choosing one freely based on your local culture and personal tastes. Common choices have included:

Sibling Names for Sienna

When picking a name for a child, always pick a name that you feel will work for the child, rather than a name that will compliment a sibling’s name. Names that might work well together with the name Sienna include:

For girls:

For boys:

Famous People Named Sienna

While Sienna has a relatively recent history, the events of recent decades have still included the birth of multiple notably famous individuals by that name.

  • Sienna Elizabeth Mapelli Mozzi: British royal.
  • Sienna Guillory: British actress.
  • Sienna Rodgers: British editor and activist.
  • Sienna Rosie Diana Miller: British-American model.

Sienna in Popular Culture

Notable uses of the name Sienna in recent popular culture have included:

  • Sienna”: a 1989 album by keyboardist Stanley Cowell.
  • Sienna: the former professional stage name of the American professional wrestler Allysin Kay.
  • Sienna Blake: a character from “Hollyoaks.”

Sienna FAQs

Is Sienna a Biblical Name?

No. While the name Sienna is fairly popular among Christian families, it does not appear in the Bible.

Is Sienna a Hindu Name?

No, this is likely due to confusion of the word “Sienna” with the similar-sounding traditionally Hindu name “Sianna,” which is derived from the name of the Hindu goddess Sita, wife of the Hindu god Lord Rama.

Is Sienna a Good Name?

Yes, Sienna is an elegant yet simple name that suggests purity and innocence but also success. If you plan on giving your baby girl this Italian name, she’ll likely enjoy it throughout her life.

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