Origin and Popularity of Ralph

Although not noted in the top 100 most popular names for boys, the popularity of Ralph as a boy’s name has not declined dramatically as many other names have. The Ralph name was introduced to England by Scandinavian settlers before the Norman Conquest.

In the middle ages the Ralph name was spelled Ralf, and by the 17th century it was spelled Rafe. The common spelling of the name was introduced in the 18th century, and one of the earliest bearers of that name was the famous American poet Ralph Waldo Emmerson who was instrumental in the Transcendentalist movement in the 19th century.

Meaning of the Name Ralph

There are several different meanings of Ralph. Both the Teutonic and American versions of the name are said to mean “strong”. The Scandinavian and English meaning of Ralph is said to be “Red Counsel” or “Red Wolf”.

Famous People with the Name

There are several other famous people with the name Ralph. The great designer Ralph Lauren, and the actor Ralph Finnes are modern day examples, although it seems that the use of the name has tapered in the film industry in the last few years..

Useful Resources

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