Donna Name Meaning & Origin


Pronunciation: DAHN-ə (key)

Origin of the name Donna:

Modern coinage used as a feminine form of Donald (world ruler) or as a borrowing from the Italian donna (lady).

From A World of Baby Names by Teresa Norman.

Related Names:

Dawna, Dona

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US Popularity of Donna Over Time

Sister & Brother Names

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Comments and insights on the name Donna

Now in 2011 I am 25 and from what I have read it wasn't a very popular name in the 80's when i was born! i was going to be called Tammy which i don't think i would have liked as much lol...Growing up I had 2 other girls called Donna in my year so i suppose it was more popular then people think middle name is Rozina which is Latin for Rose and Donna means lady so i am Lady Rose! i love that!!!!
Donna Kebabs are a popular snack in the UK on a ”night out”.

I read in our Bible when I was a child the meaning for the name Donna was "given" It said that it was originally from the name of St. Donatello. It was a Catholic Bible and at the time you had to be baptized with a saint's name or some acceptable form thereof. It was said to be a feminine form of the name Donatello making Donna an appropriate for a Catholic girl. Doña in Spanish is pronounced with the tilla. In Italian, the title Dona is always spelled with just one "n". There should be no reason to change the spelling of the name if it were merely a replication of that title. Anyway, I like the meaning "given" much more than the generic "lady". I remembered thinking as a child -- it was the first thing my parents picked for me -- it was truly "given" to me, as I liked to think I was a given to them as well.

If you are under the age of 50 and named Donna, you have failed as a human being

I've always liked my name. I was born in 1959. At that time, the combination of "Donna Lynn/Lynne" was very popular. There were two other people in my school class named Donna. One of the other people shared my middle name, Lynne, except the letter "e" was dropped from her middle name. My father named me and my sister. My mother named my two brothers. Contrary to others, I wasn't named after my father. Donna means "lady" and, my middle name of Lynne means "a fortress or strong tower", hence, my name means a lady who is a fortress or strong tower. Often, I have friends who confide in me in times of trouble. I'm honored to be there for them.

Personal experiences with the name Donna

Growing up in the 50's and 60's there were many Donnas. When I lived in a small town, there were 4 of us in the same grade and we had to use initials or middle names along such as "Donna Sue". And as I mention the middle names, I have been stuck over the years with people giving me nicknames such as the aforementioned "Donna Sue", or "Donna Lou", even though my middle name is different and even though I've never met another Donna with it, I still get called by those nicknames. Now, there aren't so many Donnas and it is kind of nice to have a name meaning "lady". My middle name means "noble", so I'm a noble lady.

I was in the same boat... always had to use my last initial to distinguish myself in grade school from all the other Donnas. I have a brother named Todd and he had the same problem. In fact another family on our street had a Donna and a Todd the same ages as us. As an adult, I used to think it was a drag to have such a dated name. But now I think it's kitchy and cool. There are lots of dated names, like Tracy, Linda, etc. but none are as cool as Donna. The name conjures up images of big hair and flower power! Todd is also pretty great, if you like surfing.

I had the same problem...5 Donnas in my class through elementary school. We all had to use our last initial, mine was K. Everyone ended up thinking I was Donna Kay and it stuck. I lived with it but always felt sorry for Donna P. : ) Kid's can be mean, parents keep that in mind please. If you are going to give your child an extremely common name, they will probably have to use an add on. Finally, though I have ALWAYS wanted to change my name, I too appreciate the meaning. My middle name means pure, so Lady pure is nice.

I was the only Donna in my school... But then, I was born in the mid-1970's, and the name had lost popularity. I was named after the fireman who delivered me (Don), and my middle name is my father's name (Jean). Named after 2 men... kinda funny that Donna means lady. I have never felt my name suited me... is this a Donna trait, or just me?

My mother's name is Donna. I guess it was popular in the 50's

I was born in 1996, way after the name had peaked. My dad named me Donna because he felt it was a very feminine name and I wouldn't have the issue of having another person with the same name in school or whatever, which is true. I am the only Donna my age, and all the other ones I have met are in their 40s and 50s. My middle name is Marie. And, I've been called every name in the book. Just a few of the nicknames I've been called include: Don, Donnie, Donatella, Donatello, Dee, Big Dee (?) Madonna, etc.

I always liked the name Donna, and my best friend, a lovely, beautiful person, is named Donna. Every Donna I've ever met was named after her father (Don). A beautiful way to honor a girl's father.

Nicknames for Donna

Donna Lou, Donna Sue, Donnie, Donna Lee, Donn/Dawn, Dee, Donna Lynne, Donna Bella,

Meanings and history of the name Donna

Italian origin. Means "lady."

Famous real-life people named Donna

Donna Lewis, singer
Donna Summer, singer
Donna Reed, actress
Donna Douglas, actress
Donna D'Erricco, actress
Donna DeLory, singer
Donna Dixon, actress
Donna Shalala, Secretary of Health and Human Services under President Clinton
Donna Karan, fashion designer
Donna Tartt, author
Donna Fargo, singer
Donna Rice, sex scandal celebrity
Donna Feldman, model
Donna Mills, actress

Donna in song, story & screen

"Afternoon Tea" by The Kinks
Character on "Twin Peaks"
"Oh Donna" by Ritchie Valens
Donna "Hot Donna" Pinciotti, character from "That 70's Show"
"Donna" by Bob Marley
"Who's Holdin' Donna Now?" by DeBarge
In radio: "The Donna Syndrome" on Car Talk (Supposedly, every woman who drives a Firebird or Camaro is named Donna)
Rock band "The Donnas"
Donna Noble, companion in "Doctor Who"
Donna Martin, character on Beverly Hills 90210 played by Tori Spelling
Donna Troy, the previous Wonder Girl, Wonder Woman's younger sister
"Donna, the Prima Donna" by Dion
Donna Paulsen, character on "Suits"
Donna Sheridan, character in "Mamma Mia", played by Meryl Streep in the 2008 film

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