Leo Name Meaning

A name of great associations, there is a lot to love about the small but mighty Leo. Whether you’re loving his brave meaning of “lion” or a fan of his horoscope associations, Leo has a number of sides to him that you can explore.

Leo is on-trend with the short and sweet picks that have been inching up the charts like Eli and Ian. He packs a lot of punch despite his size, his heart of a lion shining through. He also has the super cool -o ending seen in Milo and Mateo.

For nature lovers, there’s more to Leo than just his big cat roots. He’s also a constellation name, a cool pick for an astronomy lover. He isn’t quite as obvious as Orion, but he’s a cheeky nod to your hobby.

Leo is the ultimate cool-kid name, packed with relaxed vibes and an effortless style. Leo is confident, unafraid to strike up conversation with just about anyone. He knows who he is and what he wants, and he isn’t afraid to work hard at his goals to achieve them.

A name that manages to sound soft but have a strong side, Leo is a versatile choice with enviable dimension. He is also another international pick that works well across languages regardless of where life may take him.

Infographic of Leo name meaning, which is A Latin name of strength, Leo means lion.
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Leo Name Popularity

How popular is the name Leo? Here’s everything we know.

Year Rank # Births % Births
1910 51 678 0.1926%
1911 50 814 0.2186%
1912 49 1,644 0.326%
1913 48 2,018 0.3559%
1914 47 2,645 0.3795%
1915 47 3,519 0.3873%
1916 47 3,613 0.374%
1917 47 3,771 0.3769%
1918 48 4,034 0.3759%
1919 49 3,796 0.3625%
1920 48 4,050 0.3642%
1921 50 4,058 0.3544%
1922 51 3,892 0.3493%
1923 49 3,969 0.3544%
1924 51 3,983 0.343%
1925 54 3,765 0.3331%
1926 54 3,546 0.3224%
1927 54 3,535 0.3194%
1928 61 3,086 0.2884%
1929 60 3,012 0.2908%
1930 63 3,027 0.2898%
1931 68 2,695 0.2731%
1932 73 2,492 0.2522%
1933 75 2,345 0.2517%
1934 86 2,300 0.2379%
1935 92 2,131 0.2193%
1936 94 2,009 0.2086%
1937 97 2,009 0.2039%
1938 104 1,940 0.1895%
1939 107 1,835 0.1804%
1940 112 1,742 0.1639%
1941 115 1,720 0.1528%
1942 120 1,787 0.1415%
1943 132 1,681 0.1288%
1944 132 1,581 0.1276%
1945 135 1,568 0.1286%
1946 147 1,642 0.1113%
1947 147 1,795 0.1075%
1948 151 1,702 0.1066%
1949 153 1,631 0.1014%
1950 158 1,546 0.096%
1951 155 1,649 0.0973%
1952 171 1,546 0.0886%
1953 162 1,642 0.0928%
1954 172 1,595 0.0873%
1955 175 1,565 0.0851%
1956 184 1,542 0.0816%
1957 189 1,510 0.0785%
1958 195 1,410 0.0746%
1959 202 1,422 0.0748%
1960 229 1,182 0.0624%
1961 230 1,153 0.0611%
1962 231 1,083 0.059%
1963 236 988 0.055%
1964 236 1,002 0.0569%
1965 247 875 0.0535%
1966 241 827 0.053%
1967 259 740 0.0488%
1968 279 655 0.0436%
1969 273 707 0.0459%
1970 295 665 0.0418%
1971 303 611 0.0407%
1972 323 516 0.0379%
1973 338 463 0.0357%
1974 344 458 0.0352%
1975 338 473 0.0368%
1976 352 434 0.0337%
1977 363 429 0.0318%
1978 358 432 0.0321%
1979 365 438 0.0311%
1980 374 420 0.0287%
1981 346 473 0.0322%
1982 369 434 0.029%
1983 409 356 0.0241%
1984 408 365 0.0245%
1985 411 384 0.0253%
1986 429 361 0.0239%
1987 423 389 0.0255%
1988 436 386 0.0248%
1989 465 366 0.0227%
1990 478 374 0.0226%
1991 441 462 0.0283%
1992 468 419 0.0263%
1993 468 409 0.0262%
1994 470 421 0.0274%
1995 488 400 0.0265%
1996 489 397 0.0265%
1997 483 397 0.0268%
1998 443 474 0.0317%
1999 449 471 0.0315%
2000 394 611 0.04%
2001 368 685 0.0455%
2002 340 777 0.0518%
2003 288 1,058 0.0695%
2004 265 1,206 0.0791%
2005 259 1,241 0.0812%
2006 236 1,477 0.0943%
2007 238 1,510 0.0957%
2008 228 1,596 0.1033%
2009 210 1,786 0.1195%
2010 189 1,937 0.1344%
2011 167 2,235 0.1569%
2012 134 2,867 0.2012%
2013 112 3,502 0.246%
2014 97 3,963 0.272%
2015 91 4,587 0.3153%
2016 74 5,272 0.3656%
2017 60 5,923 0.4244%
2018 50 6,719 0.489%
2019 40 7,454 0.5506%
2020 38 6,964 0.5471%
2021 31 7,749 0.6339%
2022 22 8,029 0.6086%

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Data via SSA.gov.

Names Like Leo

If you like Leo, you’ll love these other names like Leo.

What names are diminutives of Leo?

A diminutive is a name that’s like Leo sounds, you might also like these names that sound like Leo, but shorter.

Name Meaning Origin Popularity Other Gender

Pasture or meadow


What names are variants of Leo?

Mix it up with these names that are a variation of the name Leo.

Name Meaning Origin Popularity Other Gender

Lion of the sea






Lion strength



Brave lion












Lion strength






Brave people


What names sound like Leo?

If you like how Leo sounds, you might also like these names that sound like Leo.

Name Meaning Origin Popularity Other Gender

Shadow Portrait



Short for Giovanni



Lion man



Heir; loved



Plowed land



Joined together



Helmet of will









Man from Rome






God's gift


What names are similar to Leo?

Find a name that’s like Leo, but just a little bit different.

Name Meaning Origin Popularity Other Gender

From Hadria



Free man






Of the Lord









God is gracious



Young at heart



From Lucania



Healing God


Lists With Leo

Find inspiration in these baby boy name lists featuring the name Leo.

Siblings of Leo

Mamas with kids named Leo also have kids with these names.

Name Meaning Origin Popularity Other Gender

Father’s rejoice






From the sea



Lily flower



Horse lover



The saints






Rose flower



Celestial star






My God is Yahweh



With many elm trees



  1. Leo was just a name both my husband and I loved before we were married. It signifies bravery and anxiously many people see it as Leo the Lion. ?

  2. Named after dad

  3. Leo is his zodiac sign, and the name Leo sounds nice in English and in Spanish/French/ Dutch!

  4. Leo Judah… we want his life to be marked by strength and bravery like a lion and to be full of praise and thanksgiving to God.

  5. My husband choose Leo as its represent strength and short trendy name. Also, it’s Australia’s 2023 top 3 babies name. On the other hand, I preferred Moises as it my father’s name, and It’s a tradition for ever first child of his children to call Moises. All my three sister first born boy called Moises. Unfortunately, my husband didn’t like it so we finally, named him baby Leo

  6. My son was born at 33 weeks and he just fought through like the strong lion, leo

  7. His father and I are both Leos and felt it was a strong name like Leo the lion. It’s also really the only name we both really liked and agreed on.

  8. Leo was named after his father’s zodiac sign.

  9. I have 2 sons! My first son’s name is Leonidas ( Leo or Leon for short ) and my second is Ariel ( Ari for short ) Both names means Lion cause I love them! They’re the symbol of bravery and strength. And both my sons are brave.

  10. It’s short, two syllables and means brave.

  11. We named our son Leo, because we liked it, it’s my husbands star sign.

  12. My husband is half Greek, half Korean. In the Greek culture, it’s tradition to name your first son after the paternal grandfather. My husbands Dad’s name is Harislaos. He said no need to name him that but we did want to have at least a Greek inspired name. Leo is short for Leonidas which means strong and was literally the only name my husband and I could really agree on 🙂

  13. My husband really liked the name Leo. When he first mentioned it I was not the biggest fan, but when I started looking up nursery ideas and themes, every one I loved had the name Leo on the wall. We didn’t know what we were having but when they said boy I knew what his name had to be

  14. Represents a Lion and strength

  15. Our older son has a family name on my husbands side, so we wanted to have a family name on my side for our second child! Leo James was my great great grandfathers name, but before I knew that it was on our list of names we liked with Miles!

  16. Leo, the praise the glory and the majesty of God! We chose a beautiful biblical name that fits with our “old school” name theme.

  17. We choose the name Leo as is stands for being brave and courageous. We named our son after the strong men in his life. His dad, his uncle, and most importantly a very special mentor to his dad.

  18. Leo is a name that has been so dear to me , both biblical and otherwise, I love the name and thank God for giving me a boy that I have given him the name, In Nigeria names play a lot in oo nice life. Gracious.

  19. My husband picked the name Leonidas after we found out the sex of the baby:)

  20. We named our son Leo because the zodiac sign Leo is a lion. Our son is special needs and has a hole in his heart that will require open heart surgery. He is our courageous heart warrior of light.

  21. Leo is classic, strong but also cute and not too common. It means lion- a symbol of strength, bravery and a biblical symbol of Christ. There are also many patron saint Leos.

  22. Leo was my grandfather’s name. We love it.

  23. Leo was the only name my husband and I could agree on.

  24. It was honestly the only name that both my husband and I could agree on.

  25. Leo was one of my favorite characters in my favorite tv show (Charmed) and he was an angel. He was someone whom I hope my son grows up to be like. I heard the name again when my boyfriend’s neighbor brought a baby named Leo over to the house a few Christmas’s ago. My boyfriend and I are both Leo’s on the zodiac chart, and since he’s a combination of both of us, we thought it would be perfect. Those are all the reasons how our little lion got his name!

  26. thoughts of Lion and love everything that has to do with the characteristic of Lions: strength, calm, africa, royal,

  27. Leo means lion and lions are fierce. My only hope for this little guy is that he lives his life to the fullest and loves fiercely.

    I like that Leo isn’t a very common name but a great name for a cute little boy.

  28. We planned to name our second child after my grandmother, Leona. Baby’s nickname would have been Leo if she was a girl, so we just stuck with Leo for our boy’s name too! I love that his name is a simple, classic, old-fashioned name that you don’t hear very often anymore.

  29. It was the only boy name my partner and I could agree on.

  30. It was a name I liked from an interactive novel

  31. I’m from the U.S. and my husband is from Spain so, we were looking for a name that can be easily pronounced in English for, my family, and in Spanish, for his. We both liked the name Leo because it’s short, simple and it’s also recently becoming popular in both the USA and Spain. One slight obstacle with the name is that it is pronounced differently in Spanish and English. At home, we’ve decided to pronounce it in Spanish so, we call him Lay-o. My family now pronounces it in Spanish as well and everyone seems to like it better in Spanish! I guess he’ll just have a hard time needing to explain the pronunciation when he meets new people in the future, haha.

  32. We loved Leo because it’s short and sweet. We love the nature connection, to the lion and Leo the constellation. We also love the biblical connection, with the lion of Judah.

  33. Easy, short and nice !

  34. Short, sweet, and strong.

  35. I was fulfilled when I gave birth to Leo, I am very thankful to Our Creator for giving my advance birthday gift

  36. He’s a saint of our church and we loved the name

  37. My husband & I had the hardest picking out my sons name. We literally had to decide when they handed us the birth certificate paperwork in the hospital. I was exhausted & undecided. My husband was stuck on Leo so I let him pick. I chose his middle name Patrick. My husband at birth his mom was going to name him Anthony or Patrick so we chose the name he didn’t get. Honestly after we decided on Leo I still wasn’t at peace with it but as we’ve gotten to know him more he truly is the perfect little Leo ?

  38. I like the name Leo because it’s a kind name and that it’s short. (Leos thoughts on his own name )
    We chose the name Leo because we like the meaning and when we picked it, it was not very common.

  39. Love it

  40. Liked that he is a Leo born in Aug and that it means Lion. Middle name we chose is Eitan which means strength so he is a strong lion.

    Don’t like that it’s a bit too common. But the middle name is less common so it’s a compromise.

  41. We love it! Just didn’t realize how popular it had become ?

  42. We wanted something that was cute and casual but not silly, somewhat original but well-known enough that we (or he) wouldn’t constantly have to repeat or spell it when people ask, and short and sweet. Leo fit the bill perfectly!

    Also – we had other boy names on the list and couldn’t decide until we met him. Sometimes you need to wait and see what suits them best!

  43. We chose this name because it sounds nice in both French and English. We were in search of something that can be said and used nicely in both languages since we are a multi-cultural household. We also loved that it meant Lion. The only dislikes I have about the name is that it has become very common and a lot of children are being named Leo now.

  44. We chose Leo for our son because it is his great great grandfather’s name. We liked it right off the bat and he even looks like a Leo 😉 What’s also nice about it is St. Pope Leo the Great is someone he can come to know.
    The negative side is that we only went with Leo. Not Leonardo or Leonard. I do think it would be nice if he had a longer name to use in “professional” settings. I like the name Leonard but my husband great grandpa was only Leo, so we stuck with that.

  45. I’m bad with names

  46. We wanted a name that wasn’t the same as any friends or family. We like that it is exactly what we want him to be called (rather than short for another name).

  47. We liked Leo because it’s short so it went well with our long last name. We also liked that it’s not super common but also not “out there” like some modern names!

  48. After the Renaissance Man himself, DaVinci. My husband thought Leonardo was too long so we settled on Leo.

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