Girl names ending in LIA dot the popularity charts. There’s Amelia, of course, and Emilia, too.
But beyond those two powerfully popular picks, dozens of alternatives await.
Like Amelia, girl names ending in LIA often feels vintage and feminine. They offer plenty of history. But unlike Amelia and Emilia, they’re far less likely to repeat on the playground.
Of course, the LIA ending doesn’t sound exactly the same in every name. (And some names can be pronounced more than one way!) Some sound like lee-uh, others lay-uh, and others, too.
And, of course, just Lia is a name, too. It’s a romance language take on Biblical Leah or a logical nickname option for many of the girl names ending in lia.
From the familiar but not common, to the truly rare, there’s something on this list for every namer.
GIRL NAMES ENDING IN LIA
The most traditional spelling of this name might be the Arabic Aaliyah, introduced to the world by a tragically short-lived pop singer. Plenty of other spellings are in use: Aliah, Aleah, Aliyah, Aleaha. The more classic Aaliyah has ranked in the US Top 100 since 2001. Alia Shawkat played Maeby on Arrested Development.
The scientific name for honeysuckle, and an unconventional way to get to Abby. It could also serve as a feminine form of Abel.
Myth gives us the founders of Rome, twins Romulus and Remus. This name belonged to their seldom-mentioned foster mother.
An unusual form of Adelaide and company.
Back to Ancient Roman for Aelia, a feminine form of the family name Aelius.
AMELIA, AMALIA, and EMILIA
Three similar-sounding names with intertwined roots, Amelia leads the pack. But Emilia has gained in recent years, and Amalia is on parents’ radar, too.
ANATALIA and ANATOLIA
According to legend, Saint Anatolia was a third century Christian who resisted marriage to a pagan man. While she was popular in Italy, her name brings to mind Turkey – it’s another name for Asia Minor. It offers a great meaning: sunrise.
ARACELIA and ARCELIA
Araceli is a Spanish epithet for the Virgin Mary, from the Latin phrase “altar of the sky.” There’s a tiny town called Arcelia in Mexico. But while Araceli has seen some steady use, the LIA ending versions of the name remain uncommon.
An Old Testament Queen of Judah, Athaliah went to great lengths to preserve her family’s reign.
Golden Aurelia returned to the US Top 1000 in 2012, and continues to climb in use.
Remember the Amelia Bedelia books, about a bumbling, but good-hearted, housekeeper? Bedelia was once an affectionate form of Bridget – though today it’s quite rare.
A cousin to Calla – as in the lily – as well as the Greek mythological name Callisto.
CAMELIA and CAMELLIA
A bold botanical with the easy nicknames Cammie and Cam. The similar-sounding Camila is far more popular, but that could help these LIA-ending names seem like something just slightly different.
CECELIA and CECILIA
From the rollicking Simon and Garfunkel song to the vintage sound and easy nickname Cece, Cecilia could be a great alternative to Amelia.
Celia looks like a cousin to Cecilia. But the shorter Celia has a different origin and a literary sheen, thanks to Shakespeare’s As You Like It.
It looks like the proto-Chloe. Except a sharp-eyed reader pointed out that Cloelia would have been pronounced without the ‘o’ – Clelia. That might be a little less appealing. Then again, Cloelia was quite the figure in the ancient world. A Roman taken hostage during war, she led a successful escape, impressing both her captor and the people of Rome with her bravery.
Lear’s loyal daughter, and another Shakespearean name. How can it be that Cordelia doesn’t rank in the US Top 1000?
In the Star Wars universe, Corellia is Han Solo’s home planet. But names like Corelia and Caralia have been heard over the years, too, making Corellia ony slightly sci fi.
Another ancient Roman name, Cornelia is also instantly familiar, but seldom heard.
DAHLIA, DALIA and DELIA
Dahlia is a straight-up floral choice, inspired by the Swedish botanist, Anders Dahl. It’s the national flower of Mexico, which leads to Dalia – the Spanish spelling of the name.
Then there’s Delia, a goddess name related to Artemis and sometimes used in poetry and made famous by a tragic tale immortalized in song by Johnny Cash.
ELIA and ELLIA
An almost inevitable creation in our age of Ella and Amelia.
The Greek ‘eu’ means good – leading to lots of names, from Eugene to Eudoxia. Eulalia means good talker, and Saint Eulalia is the patron saint of Barcelona. Eulala and Eulalie are heard, too.
EVALIA and EVELIA
Take the spare, Biblical Eve and the Latinate Eva, take on -lia, and the girl names ending in LIA list gets a little longer. With so many Ev names in favor, they’d be very wearable, if quite rare.
Along with Bedelia, this one isn’t likely to be heard anytime soon. And yet, her meaning is lovely – faithful, from the Latin fidelis. Beethoven’s only opera was called Fidelio.
If Evelia is an elaboration of Eve, then logically, Idalia is an elaboration of Ida – work. Plus, the goddess Aphrodite was connected with Idalion, an ancient city in Cyprus, and was sometimes referred to as Aphrodite Idalia.
JULIA and GIULIA
Among the most classic and enduring names on this list, Julia is yet another Roman name. Timeless and elegant, Julia has never left the US Top 200. Giulia is the Italian spelling.
LILIA and LILLIA
Oh, all the Lily names! While Lilia and Lillia remain relatively rare, they fit right in with Lily and Lillian, as well as all these LIA enders.
A romantic floral, recently back in the US Top 1000 after a long hiatus.
A straight-up hero name, thanks to Mahalia Jackson, civil rights activist and the Queen of Gospel. It comes from the Old Testament Mahlah, used for both men and women.
Former First Daughter Malia Obama put this name on parents’ radar. It could be an invention from so many similar-sounding choice, but it also acknowledges the Obama family’s Hawaiian roots, as it is the equivalent of Mary.
A pan-European choice, Natalia comes from a Latin name meaning “Christmas Day.” American parents have tended to use French form Natalie instead, but Natalia has caught on in recent years.
Natalia is the obvious Christmas season choice, but Noelia carries the same meaning.
ODELIA and ODILIA
Two names related to Otto, Odelia and Odilia fit with other rarities like Odette and Ottilie. For the right family, they could be perfect.
Shakespeare made her tragic, but Ophelia’s gorgeous sound and stylish LIA ending makes it worth reconsidering.
A rare Ro- name that brings to Romeo and Roman.
A rare Rose name, Rosalia belongs to a twelfth century Italian saint, said to be descended from Charlemagne himself.
TALIA, TAHLIA, THALIA, and TALLIA
With roots in Hebrew and Greek, it’s tough to pin down this appealing name. Thalia was one of the nine Muses in Greek myth; Talia Shire played Rocky’s beloved wife Adrian in the long-running movie franchise.
We typically think of Wilhelmina and Willa – and lately even Willow – as feminine forms of William. But drop the ‘m’ and this name works for a daughter, too.
What’s your favorite girl name ending in lia?
First published on August 22, 2014, this post was revised and re-posted on April 29, 2021.
Callia is currently on our list. My great grandma’s middle name was Fidelia pronounced Fye-deal-yah
Hallia is a rare name that has an exotic flair, a blend of Hallie and Lia. Hallie means home ruler, feminine form of Henry or a variant of Harriet. Lia is an Italian variant of Leah, which is much like a suffix.
Lots of great names here!
If our next baby is a girl, hubby and I really like Emilia Bianca to go with our Alina Sofia. Planning on 3 babies. I feel like I would have to find another vowel name that contains an L, ends in A, and does not have an -ina or -lia ending. I like so many A and E names, but can’t think of I names… or even O. Haha getting way ahead of myself. Watch the next 2 will be boys!
Any ideas besides Isla, Isabella, Ilona, or Olivia?
Also, Ellia 🙂
The Mrs. says
Always love your lists, Abby. This one is no exception!
Carlia (Car-LEE-ah) a nice way to honor a Carl or elaborate Carla or Carly into a three-syllable name. This name hasn’t charted on the SSA in the last 100.
Tristia (Tris-TEE-ah) this name doesn’t end with a ‘lia’, but it came to mind today. A frilled way to honor a Tristan or move beyond Trista. Love that it comes with the popular-right-now-thanks-to-Divergent nickname of ‘Tris’. This name also is crazy rare.
Another name in this category is Angelia.
Christina Fonseca says
I like quite a few “ends in -lia” names. My faves are Cecilia, Dalia, Dahlia, Delia, Noelia and Evelia.
There are some really awesome names here! My favorite is Lilia. I am thinking of using the Latvian spelling Lilija for one of my daughters to reflect my heritage. (They’re both pronounced the same way, as the j sounds like a y in Latvian. I just worry about people misspelling and mispronouncing it all the time.)
I also love Amelia – even though it’s too common for me to use, Alia/Aleah, Cecilia, Delia, Julia, Malia, and Talia, either on its own or as a nickname for Natalia. Of those, I like Delia and Julia the best, even though Delia, the little girl in ‘The Omen IV: The Awakening’ is the devil child, and Julia seems like it’s everywhere.
My husband is Latvian and we have a little Dorotija. We are now expecting baby #2 and trying to find a name that works in both languages, and Lilija is a great option!
Dorotija is gorgeous! Lilija would be a great fit for your 2nd child if it’s a girl. They sound like perfect sibling names. 🙂
Great list! Love Amelia, Cordelia, Lilia,& Magnolia.