Publicity photo of Elissa Landi for Argentinea...
Image via Wikipedia

At first glance, she’s just a twist on the fading Alyssa, or maybe Melissa, deprived of her M.

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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  1. Thanks for using Elissa for name of the day. I ended up changing it to Elyssa . Elyssa Beatrice was born Sept 1st Both spellings appear for Dido and I had such a tough time choosing between the two. I absolutely love the strory behind it and we call her Lyssa.We like that she has multiple nickname choices and it honors late great grandma Edna:)

    1. Congratulations on the arrival of your darling daughter, Serenity! What a lovely, lovely name and how nice to honor your family.

      1. Update! I changed it back! I just loved Elissa with this spelling and unfortunately let a family member talk me into changing the spelling but it bothered me for months. So it was easily changed back to Elissa. I love it for its history and it’s nod to Phantom of the Opera. Loving the name Clara Scarlett if our next is a girl as well as Evelina after seeing it here on your site. Thanks!

  2. To me, Elissa LOOKS older than Alyssa; maybe it’s the lack of a “y”? Alyssa always seemed like a modern variant of Alice, while Elissa looks more classic. Yes, when said out loud they found fairly similar, but in appearance I find them quite different.

  3. I grew up with an Elissa – she was a younger sis for a friend of mine, born right at the late 70s peak of the name. I do remember her having to emphasize EHL issa to get people to spell it right and to say it right – it was a pet peeve of hers (understandably so) for people to say UHlissa when she said EHlissa. I always thought it was a variant of Alyssa. Nice to know it’s got its own story – goes better with her siblings’ names, which are both more recognizably traditional names. I can see the appeal to it now with the Ella/Ellie craze, but it’s not for me.

  4. I have a younger cousin named Elicia (pronounced like Alicia.) She was named after her Grandma Elinor, so the spelling makes sense, but its been misspelled her entire life. I worry that child named Elissa will have the same problem, the names are just not distinctive enough from Elisa, Alyssa and Allison

  5. I would prefer the nn Lissy or Lissie for Elissa. She does seem more related to Elizabeth at first glance (at least to me). I have a cousin whose second daughter is Elizabeth, nn Lizzie.

  6. I love the history behind, still just looks like an alternative form of Alyssa to me, which is nice enough, but way too popular for my tastes.