Stuck on a picking a pretty female name, preferably of French origin. Need to be able to have a shorter version, if it’s too long, because we are lazy, so something like Constance won’t work, because the only way to shorten it is Connie, and that’s a bit more modern than we need. Connie is too modern, and something like Eadgifu is too outdated. Originally, we had Margot, but she just doesn’t seem like a Margot. We kind of like Isabel. That sounds pretty and somewhat kick butt.
Abrielle, Adelais, Mirelle, Antoinette
Amalie – Amy for short?
Sidonie, Veronique, Marguerite?
I personally like Sophie and Cosette
Diane A Bloechl says
Brigette? Danielle? Gabrielle?
Karen Baldwin Wolthuis says
Celestia was my great-great grandmother’s name and I use it for a renfaire name. I shorten it to Celly. How about Frédérique, Fréd or Riqua for short?
Ivelisse (ivelyse), shortens to ivy
Long list of French names for Girls: http://french.languagedaily.com/names/girls-names
From that site, top French names for girls are:
Emma, Lea, Manon, Clara, Chloe, Camille, Sarah, Oceane, Jade
Old French girls’s names that gain popularity:
Adèle, Adeline, Alice, Ameline, Bernadette, Florence, Raina
How about Calais? Shortens to Cal pretty easily and doesn’t sound modern.
Marie, Olivia, Camille, Zoé
Adelia (Del or Lia)
Elicia (Eli or Cia)
I always like elegant names that can be shortened into Uni-sex names like Antoinette who can go by Toni or Alexandrine who can go by Alex. Also there is Valerie which can go by Val
Aurore (shorten to Rory for english speakers)
Michelline (Mich or Micha)
Genevieve or Genvieve (Genie, Jen)
Laurette, Alix, Axelle, Camille, Mathilde, Océane, Marguerite?
Arielle, shorten to Ari?
Ah, I like this one =O ! It makes me think of the Little mermaid (even if her name is Ariel xD)
I recommend a site called behindthename.com. It’s a site where you can search names based on origin, use, meaning or popularity. There is a lot. When I write I like to name my characters something suited to their personality. As I only know this character to be strong, female, French and pretty I came up with Gabriella ( Ella or Gabby for short).
Lynn E. says
Genveive, shortens to Gen or Jenny
Amber S. says
Chris Henderson-Bauer says
I know a Genevieve who shortens her name to Vieve (which she pronounces vee-vay, as in vive la resistance).
Amber S. says
Genevieve (Gen) for short
Tina C. says
Delphine. Del for short.
If she’s a Delphine she needs magic hair. (Sorry to anyone who isn’t also an Orphan Black fan.)
Auntie Laura says
I really like Madeline, because Maddy can be the tomboyish version (from Google: Madeleine and Madeline are forms of Magdalene, which is well known as a name because of Saint Mary Magdalene. Magdalene means “from Magdala”. Mary Magdalene’s name is thought to be derived from Magdala – a village on the sea of Galilee. In Aramaic, “magdala” means “tower” or “elevated, great, magnificent”.) Renee is also interesting – there’s an accent on the second e, but it means reborn.
Isabel ? Isabelle you mean ? (It’s more common with “elle” in French, or.. I just haven’t meet a lot of Isabel xD)
Elisabeth (Eli) ?
Angeline (Angel, ahah, hum.. not sure if it’s of French origin but I put this one because of its shortened version :p)
Liliane (Lili) ?
(Well.. I would suggest my own first name – Sandrine – but it’s too long, not pretty and its shortened version is… Sand ? Sandy ?… Urg)
( ” Eadgifu ” O_O ?! A French name ?!)
Isolde, Ysolda, shortened to Isa…Not that I’m prejudiced….
What about Aimee
Marjolaine? Means “marjoram” according to Behind the Name, and it has a few nickname possibilities that would give room for folks to make assumptions about her name.
Or Maëlys? Behind the Name says it’s the female form of Maël, which is derived from a Celtic word meaning “prince” or “chief”.
Zara – should be short enough already – “lady / princess”
Véronique – (Roni) – “bearer of victory”
I think Sévérine or Sévrine is a beautiful name. Can be shortened to Sev
Diane Mc. says
Cindy H says
Desiree (has the little `mark over 1st and second e, I don’t know how to do that with computer) old French name means Desire.
Can be shortened to Desi or Ree.
Collette – Cole or Letty
Nicolette- Nicky, Nicks, Cole, Letty
Marielle, which could be shortened to Mari
How about Eléonore? It’s nice, elegant, can be shortened to El and queen Eleonore of France was one of the most kick ass person in her time 😉
Okay my first thought was Isabeau shortened to Izzy but I must admit you have converted me. Love this name and the historical association. Could also be shortened to Nora, Ellie, Eli or to really throw people Leo.
PS – Ilona just wanted to say I love all the wonderful avatar appearances you are able to create, They are simple marvelous and often hysterical. Is this your own creativity or did you have some online program help?
What about Anaïs? It’s a pretty common name in France (that’s my impression because I know at least three) and it’s short form could be Ana. A problem might be the pronounciation. I can’t explain it very well in english because english isn’t my maternal language either.
In french it’s Isabelle not Isabel :). (I’m french)
… and so many others. 😀
I think your own name would qualify as well. Do you have a short form you go by?
Shortens to Elle and Ellie 🙂
Raina, Sevrine “Sev”, Fleur, and Camille all sound like kick ass interesting women
Isabeau – much nicer than Isabel
Guerlain – you could call her Gerry for short, i
Celeste – You could call her Cel or Lester
I’m happy to help with the pronunciation:
– Audalie (Aude)
– Clotilde (Clo)
– Apolline (from Apollo – Pola)
– Olympe (from Mont Olympus – Olly)
– Émeline (Emma)
– Aliénor (Ali)
– Ludivine (Ludi)
– Isadore (Isa)
– Cassandre (Cassie)
No convenient shortening, but these are three of my favorite prénoms:
– Garance (means red)
– Sixtine (from the Sistine chapel)
– Mazarine (regal blue color)
Hope that helps.
Jeannette? Jeanne-Marie? Then there’s the ever-popular Jeanette Isabella of song (Un Flambeau, Jeanette, Isabella) which was actually two girls, but you could use it as a single name if you wanted.
I like Eleonore, too. Shortened to Elly or Elli, maybe?
Carolyn W. says
I have three suggestions:
I like your 3rd one 😉 however I offended some people in Italy. I went to Milan on a business trip and the person I met (a guy) was offended that my name was Simone – he said it was a man’s name. I explained in Canada it was female and Simon was the male version – still could not get over it. I told him to call me Ms. X so we could get on with the meeting. 🙂
My friend and some of her cousins are named Sabina – so to avoid confusion one’s nickname was Binny, the other was Sabi. 🙂
Or Mazikeen (not sure it’s French but its pretty) (Maze for short)
Angelique. Shorten to Angie or Angel
how about Iris? Sounds like the female version of Idris
My french Canadian great grandmother was named Clara. I always liked it.
Ok. Turns out Clara is Latin in origin.
and Idris Elba is kick a$$
I was going to say Lucinda, Sin for short, but Lucinda isn’t very Frenchy. Closest would be Lucie (Lucy).
You could do Therese, and instead of Terry for short, go with Reese or Ray as a nickname.
Not Isabelle. Too close to Isabella and that may trigger Twighlight flashbacks.
But someone put forth Isabeau, which has promise if your girl is tough. Gives you Izzy and Beau as shortened options depending on how kick butt she truly is.
Isabeau = Ladyhawke (movie)
Love the full name, not a fan of the nickname Izzy. (Which spellcheck just tried to change to Ozzy.)
Amandine, could be Ama or Aman for short.
Karine, could be Kara.
Ysabeau , can shorten to Beau or Izzy
This one just sounds kick A
I love Isabeau but it is the main character from Ladyhawke, and a recurring character from GA Aiken’s dragon series. Not that it can’t be used anyway 🙂
I’m liking Isabeau. 🙂 It’s kick butt.
Patricia Schlorke says
Isabeau is also used in Thea Harrison’s Elder Race series. She is the Light Fae Queen and is not someone to mess with. 😀
I love it too. If it had a girl child, Isabeau would be her name 🙂 Also Princess Bride and Ladyhawke are my two favorite chick flicks: seeing the PB references in the Kate series is always delight so an Isabeau in one of your other books would close the circle for me 🙂
Jeannette K says
i thought of this as well!!
mel burns says
Ysabeau and Isabeau are the names of twin witches separated at birth in Kate Forsyth’s The Witches of Eileanan. Has anyone read this saga? I loved it when I read it years ago, it’s very different.
mel burns says
I’m such a dolt it’s Iseult and Isabeau.
Oh, I was looking at this thread and yet had somehow missed you used the spelling with the initial Y!
(In the problematic but interesting matriline, there are Ysadoras and Ysabellas, and I’d often thought of grabbing one of those or a variant if I had a daughter – but I think Ysabeau is the best. Possibly all the moreso now that I’ve read up more on saidsame matriline…) Spanish in that case, but also prior to spelling standardization, so they show up written differently in different documents. But the Y initial is on the family silver. (There was also a mother – daughter chain of Martas and Martitas, until my grandmother, a Marta, called “enough” and named my mother Martha. But by that point they weren’t playing up the hispanic heritage so much? Or maybe that’s just my branch. I know Grandma was fed up with everyone misspelling her name.)
Sabine or Evelyn
Chantelle – which could be shortened to Chant or to Singer
I also like Cheree
But Isabel is a good name too.
“I also like Cheree”
I’ve known 6 women with a name pronounced like that and none of them were spelled the same way. Cheri, Cherry, Sherry, Sherri, Sherrie, and Shari.
Marianne (ann or anne, also mari)
Already short names: Chloe, Alice, Claire, Lucie, Ella
I forgot the “not too modern” criteria. Including…
Pomeline or Clemence
My vote is for “Isabeau” because Ladyhawke.
Gabrielle (nickname Gabi), Adeline (nickname Ade), Éloïse (nickname Elo), Laurianne (nickname Laurie or Lolo)
Elle could also be a nickname for Gabrielle.
Marie or Margot. Short, cute and sassy!
Helène. I like Ysabeau which we’ve had down thread a few times. Jeanne (as in Jeanne d’Arc). Eloise of course, not that I’m biased…
Lex Keating says
I would like Isabel more if it wasn’t getting picked up by everyone and their mother (since sparkly vampires became popular).
Of the offerings so far, I really like Aurore, Sidonie, and Marguerite, as these all have a lot of strong consonant/vowel combinations that make for good nicknames. One of my favorite French nicknames if “Mingon” (or “Mingonette”), meaning “cute” or “girly cute.” It’s usually a family nickname that may not be attached or associated with an actual name. I would love to see a kick-butt girl who went by “cute.” Or refused to… 😉
I think Isabel is spanish….
mel burns says
F. K says
I love this name!
Eugenie (or Eugénie). Genie for short.
I am Nicole Lee – and get penny nickle, but my dad called me colelee for short….I like Charlotte as well (Char for short) and Senora (Nora for short).
not a french name but my sister is Sharla (Shar for short) it is a pretty name and a bit unique
Catherine, Catrin, Cat, Cathy,
There are lots of wonderful suggestions. I have always like Maryse but I am not sure how you would shorten it. Josee also is fairly popular or was for awhile.
Sara R says
Clélie. Shorten to Lie or Clé if necessary.
Eloise which means famous in war and she could be called elle for short
Meaning: “little Nicole”
Coco, Nickie, Nikki, Lettie, Letty
Origin of Nicolette: French, diminutive of Nicole, feminine variation of Nicholas, Greek
Nicoletta is an Italian variation; the cool nickname Nico modernizes it and makes it less feminissima.
Amy Sipes says
Cadence; could shorten to Cadie
I like Esme
Amanda Larocque says
If you still need names i vote for Celeste or (and I know its longer) Josephine.
F. K says
As a native speaker yikes to Isabeau,
unless it is for an Inn like Gertrude ?
For older French name you could try Yselda or Guillemette, Gilly and Issy for short. My favourites are Adelaïde or Ariane but I can’t think of a cute nickname.
I completely understand your “yikes” ^^’ (I feel like it’s the male version of Isabelle and it’s not but well…) (And Gertrude.. This name is so laughed at)
To an English speaker, Isabeau sounds pretty and Guillemette is unpronounceable. 🙂 Yselda is just odd, because of the Y in front. Isn’t that weird?
Or Ysolde, which I don’t know how to pronounce. I’ve been reading it phonetically. (Character in a Katie McAlister book.)
I think the hardest-to-pronounce-based-on-spelling name I can think of is Sioban.
I love Siobhan!!! I want to name a kid that. Yeah, it’s unusual in America, but it’s a gorgeous Scottish name 🙂
F. K says
@ Pika: Yes!!! The [o] sound sounds wrong for a girl name. And Gertrude was slept on, innkeeper saved it
@ Ilona: *Tries to pronounce Guillemette in English ????* I see what you mean.
Yselda is Pronounced [ee-sel-da] and is very middle ages kick ass maiden.
Then again phonetics are a fun thing.
@ Tink: Ysolde is super pretty. We pronounce it as [ee-zol-d] and Lord yes to Sioban…cheuvahn I love it!
Hum.. In that case, it’s just a little weird to see a “beau” instead of the “belle” (since “Belle” is the feminine adjective for “Beau”, I feel like the name is turned into its masculine version xD Like in a special edition of Twilight where Bella was replaced by “Beau”. Or if… Batman was Batwoman… ? It’s hard to explain. If I’m not wrong, there is no agreement between adjectives and nouns in English, but in French, there is one. That’s why, it’s just weird for me I guess).
And strangely enough, if it’s “Ysabeau”, it feels okay (because I can tell myself “it doesn’t feel like a masculine version of Isabelle”)
And Guillemette is totally unpronounceable in English XD ! Maybe… “Gui” as the “Gi” in “Give”, “lle” as the beginning of “year” (but just the very beginning, -“ye”) and “mette” as in “met” (“I met him last year”) ?
Hi, as a french native and living in France, nobody call their daughter today “Isabeau”. It is kinda of an old name. “Isabelle” is used more and shortened to “Isa”. Then you have in the kick-ass department :
– Nathalie (Nat’)
– Pamela (Pam’)
– Caroline ou Carole (Caro)
– Vanessa (Vaness’)
– Béatrice (Béa)
– Séverine (Sev’)
– Gwendoline (Gwendo / Gwen’)
– Alexandra (Alex’)
– Valérie (Val’, Valou)
– Emilie (Milou, Mimi
– Solange (Soso, So’)
– Florine, Florence, (Flo’)
– Annaëlle (Annie)
Hope it’ll help
Michelle which could be shortened to Misha or Shelly or even Ella and I have heard someone use the name “Mike” as a nickname, too.
Michelle. Nickname Mishi or Chelle.
My favorite girls name…just ask my daughter Michelle! ?
Imorena or Imoline. Both made up names
I also like Hélène, it could be Lena for short. Aliénor, like Aliénor d’Aquitaine and Allie for short. Valentine and Val, but it sounds childish. Viviane, Vivie. Violette, Viola. (I’m on a V spree). Flora, Flo. Joséphine, Jo.
I think Zoé is a Good one, and he is short. 🙂
how about Eleanore like Eleanore of Aquitaine. You could call her Ellie or Nora for short.
Just thought of Irène. Not exactly French, but it’s Greek for peace, so it may be fitting for a warrior.But I can’t think of a way to shorten it except Rene…
Évangéline (Evangeline ) from the Henry Wadsworth Longfellow epic poem about young lovers parted by the deportation of the Acadians from Canada who were eventually reunited just before they died. Very popular story in Acadian (Louisiana and Canada) history…. Short version – of name would be Eve, Eva or Evie.
I am surprised no one suggested it yet as it is old French but still popular and in use.
Name is greek in origin and means ‘good news’
I had a Gabriëlla in my class. Short was Gaby.
Constance? (Not at all inspired by the Musketeers. Ahem.)
When I think of French names,the first one coming to my mind is Isabeau, thanks to Ladyhawke.
I always liked Aurelie, Genevieve, Vivienne too
Lisette, Liz or Lele for short.
TW Andrews says
Coraline, shortened to Cora
Ana Palawar says
Adrienne sounds good. The short form could be Adie.
I’ve always been partial to Cecelia, can shorten to lia if you so desire. Also sort of means blind in old french.
Alex Salvador says
Have about Arianne?
It can be shorted to Ari.
Kristabel can shorten to Kris or Krissy.
Another one is Dixie which is short but you can shorten it to Dix if you want.
I don’t want to upset any Isabeau but for me, as a french, Isabeau sound very old, like 2 centuries old.
Here some names from my familly and friends: Michelle, Géraldine, Isabelle, Marie-Laure, Magalie, Claire, Céline, Lucie, Floriane, Katia , Nathalie, Cécile, Aube, Ghyslaine, Louise, Amandine, Alexandra, Gwenaelle, Izélia, Nicole, Aude, Alexa, Chantal, Ambre, Noémie, Elsa, Maelle…
Some time you can identified the generation of someone by her name.
Jennifer Cullison says
Genevieve : Genny,Gene,Vivi
Jennifer Cullison says
Madeline, Madelyn: Maddy, lynn. Dee
I’ve always liked Analise or Analyse or Ani for short
Eglantine (Rose) or Monique (Mona) or even Evangeline (Eva or Vangie or Lina)
Gisele , shortened to Jay
Or shortened to Gigi
Vivienne. Short form is Vivi. Also maybe Ondine or Odette
Lise (pronounced Leez)
could be eloise for longer…
On this website you can choose the origin of the name, it’s lentgh, and if it’s, actually in France, popular or not : http://www.magicmaman.com/prenom/recherche/sexe=2#?sexe=2&frai&longueur=3
Marinette? Shortened to Mari or Nettie.
I was looking at french names not so long ago myself. My focus was more on the male side but I thought these were also nice while searching.
-Zaviette ‘Zavi’ – I believe this is used more as a last name but I kinda like it
-Arielle ‘ Elle’ or ‘Ari’
My Favorite would actually be Janelle, though I’m more partial to Ann Bishop’s usage of Jaenelle.
how about Léa? Or as other’s have suggested adding Rose to it?
(middle e has a accent aigu on it in case it renders weirdly)
Supposedly means lion I think so it works for a kickass? 😀 And it’s not too long
This is probably incredibly narcissistic but might I suggest my name, Brigitte? I’m named after my French grandmother. It is pronounced only sort of similarly to Bridget. It is more like Bri-jeet. Like Jeep but with a ‘t’ on the end. The “j” sound is also a little softer. My mom shortens my name to Gitte – pronounced “jeet”. Other than being very annoying to explain on occasion, I love the name and often gets compliments on having a pretty and kind of unusual name.
Eleanor; Belle, Ellie, Nell
Lucia Chan says
Perhaps something like Amelie, shortened to Amie? Or Chloe, nickname Chlo!
Therese! could use terry for short 🙂
It’s pronounced teh-ress, and depending on where in france, has accent te grave and gue (Théresè) for that extra flair 🙂
Michelle (shortened to Mimi)
Cécile (shortened to Cici)
All names of my French relatives 🙂
My two half-French nieces are Matilde (Tilde) and Juliette (could be shortened to Jools/Juls, Julie, Lettie)
Melissande is a beautiful name, I think.
Isabeau [similar to Isabel]
My half French niece ‘s name is Capucine (nasturtium in English) or Cap for short. Cheers
I have a friend named Capucine. Some call her Capu for short.
Fancy Face says
Not particularly French but always loved Mirabella. Or Angelique for a French origin.
Leslie Caron played the title character in “Gigi”. I loved the film. The character’s full name was Gilberte. Here’s a pronunciation link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJCnoKdbItg. But Giselle or Ghislaine could be shortened to Gigi also.
Side note… There’s a second Hugh snippet on their Facebook page.
(And a hilarious note to not provide links to pretty yarn. No such warning on this site, though. Mwah ha ha.)
Patricia Schlorke says
The Hugh snippet is on this blog now. 😀 Just read it.
Jeanine Lesperance says
Jeanine….is a great name…
And I’m sure Jeaniene would also work, and give you brownie points with your BFF.
Ha! And Ilona has said Jeanine Frost is her BFF………. (Waiting for J to chime in with her vote.)………
Clothilde? Odile? Solange? Marguerite? Beatrice? French have a lot of female versions of male names – Denise? Georgette? Henriette? Paulette? Josephine? Eugenie? Charlotte? I love the French pronunciation of Agnes -“AHn-yess” – but English speakers would probably just read “Ag-ness”.
Anna B. says
What about Charlotte? This is my baby cousins name and we call her Charlie. Her friends call her Char. It could be shortened to Lottie.
Signe is of French origin. It can be shortened to Sig, Siggie, or Siggy.
It also means “sweet victory” in French. My mother was the last of
6 children. All of whom had names beginning with “H”. Her parents
were from Sweden…..
My Great Aunt Signe was from Sweden, and the name “Signe” is also a Swedish name… Search “derivation Swedish name Signe” and you’ll find lots of descriptions. Given that your grandparents were Swedish, that may have something to do with the source of your name. There is, in fact a Norse dawn goddess named Signe.
Chantelle is a lovely French name, Chan, Chants for short.
Gisele, Angélique (we shorten this one to Angele, soft “e” so it’s not Angel), Agnesse, Maryse, Elise, Lisette, Joceline, Arianne, Simone, Adele, Nadia (my parents claim French on this one, but it’s also Russian) Christianne, Carine… I have a lot of French relatives.
Saracai L says
Saracai. Pronounced Sara “K”. Sara for short.
Worth a shot 😉
Terri Ramsey says
I don’t know that it’s french, but I love the name Lyric.
Sue Padgett says
Aubrey, Bree for short. Don’t even know if it’s French or not but it sounds French! Plus it’s my granddaughter’s name! Aka Breezy Baracuda.
If you want to use Isabel and be French then it’s spelled Isabelle (My name by the way) shortened version:
Isa (pronounced Eeeza), Zaz, Zazie, Zabs, Zabou, Belle
please no Izzie that’s not a French nickname for Isabelle
Can’t believe we both posted Veronique at the same time! What a coincidence! My family calls me Vero for short, too, for Veronique.
Millicent or Milisende if you want to stick to the French Millie for short
Princess Shanamena says
Jaime shortened to “Jai”
Also Cecile “Cec” like Seese or Carla – “Lala”
Elenore – Rory for short. It means “Shining Light”;
Veronique – Vere — Bearer of Victory
The second “e” in Elenore has a diacritical mark (accent) as does the first “e” in Veronique– my keyboard won’t cooperate.
Marguerite can be shortened to Maggie, Rita, Ri-ri
Dominique (? Shortened version/my friend goes by Beth, believe it or not!)
Antoinette – Tony, Desiree – Dey or Des
I knew a woman named “Lavonna” once. Sometimes people called her “Vonna” or “Vonnie”.
Ann Woodin says
We had a kick-ass French au pair named Valerie. (She is in the French military – she can set up a hospital in less than a day – spent time in Afghanistan). Val for short.
Angelle Galjour says
Angelle! It’s my name and I love it 🙂 it’s Cajun French not actually French though :/ (On-jell) very soft J almost zh sound.
It’s easy enough in France French 🙂 Just a spelling change: Angéle. Same pronunciation
Lol, sorry half asleep ? I put the accent in the wrong direction.
Eliane- Ellie or Ann for nickname
Desiree- Des or De (pronounced Day)
Olivia ->liv, livi, livia, vivi, ollie, livy,
In the movie Chocolat, Juliette Binoche’s character had a daughter named Anoushka, who she called Anouk for short.
Has anyone suggested Genevieve? Gen, Evie,Eve
That was going to be my suggestion too!
A little more unique, my friend is actually Jeanvieve (Zjohn – vee – ehve pronunciation) and we call her “Vee” inexplicably.
Annabelle, you can shorten it to Bella
Yvette, Evee or Eve
Please have mercy! From this side of the Atlantic I find depressing to find ‘authentic’ french names that predates my grandmother so any Gisèle, Cosette Cunégonde Josette or Antoinette should go to the ‘no thanks’ bin
My grand mothers were Yvette and Marie-Thérèse. They would nearly be 100 by now.
In french first names you have the ‘old but still in use’ like Marie, Jeanne, Anne, Julie, Michelle, Louise, Claire, Marion
In the first names for both male and female you have Dominique (Domi or Mino), Camille
In no particular category: Véronique (Véro), Estelle, Christelle, Léa, Léonore, Laure, Laura, Delphine, Anaïs, Hélène, Noelle, Morganne, Vivienne, Genevièvre (Juniper), Elise, Valérie (Val or Valou) … etc etc
Depending of the generation, social background or if parents couldn’t agree :p you can have a composed first name like Marie-Laure, Anne-Marie, Marie-Laure most often with either Marie or anne since even originals have to be able to call their daughter to prevent her to cross the road and ‘Delphine-Véronique is such a mouthfull that you pity the pour girl with such an affliction.
Bernadette – bernie, Charlotte charlie, Emanuelle – emma, Anastasie – ana, Arielle – Ari, Aimee, amy
The shortened name doesn’t necessarily have to be a piece of the full name. It could be a totally unrelated nickname.
I am late to the party but I will throw this out there.
My daughter is Isabellla and we call her Isa (rhymes with Lisa).
Also, I love Evangeline — lots and lots of ways to shorten that. Eve, Eva, Evie, Angie, Angel, Lina
What fun! A new character!
How about Madeline?
A friend of my daughter’s baby is named Marguerite and they call her Daisy because of the Marguerite Daisy.
Suzette M. says
I offer my name as tribute- Suzette. Also, as an Orphan black fan, I go with Delphine.
Isabeau from LadyHawke has always been my favorite
I have a niece named Simone. We sometimes call her Simi but Mona would also work.
Karina Bass says
Genevieve – shorten to Viv, Genny.
Beautiful name. My aunt shortens it to Geegee.
My great-aunt’s dad shortened Genevieve to Jimmy because her mom didn’t like Genny.
That is a pretty one.
Amélie? Can be shortened to Aimée, Amy or Elie. I’m rereading all your books as I wait for the next release. Hope you guys are getting some well-deserved rest and relaxation
That’s the one I came here to suggest! 🙂
The feminine kick-butt in my family is named “Nirel.” For speaking, we sometimes shorten it to “Rel.” Originally that was a Hebrew name. The French have use the variant “Nirelle.”
Kelly McGrady says
My grandmother’s name was Magdalena, they called her Mia. She was Swiss not French however.
karen h says
My daughter recommends: Aurelie or Renee
Sue Fitz says
How about Genevieve. Gennie (Jennie) as the short form.
Avalyn- > Av or Lyn or Val or Aly or Alien (lol!)
My family is Acadien. My great grandmothers on my mother’s side Rosemarie, Obeline. My grandmother s were Marie Jacqueline and Yvonne. One of my aunt is also Yvonne, others are Yvette, Viola, Virginia, Noella, Lucille, Margaret Mary, Marguerite…My sister’s daughter s are named Alethea and Nicole. There are lots of names you can use. If none of the suggestions feel right, check out a Louisiana phone book for Cajun names.
By the way,Cherise is a great name???
If you haven’t already picked one:
Mireille. It sounds pretty, It’s French, and for short the nickname is Ray. I know someone named it.
I vote for Isabeau, also. You can shorten it to Izzie, or Beau.
Adélé …French form of Adela
Here is another name generator – http://www.behindthename.com/random/
Some names I like – Céleste , Mirella (Italian French variant is Mireille )
Alex R. says
I’ve always loved the name Aliera. From the Jhereg books by Steven Brust, so I assume of Hungarian origin. Can be pronounced in a couple of ways. Allie for short.
I am going to be self serving… Camille. Can be shortened to milly, mimi, or cami,
I like Genevieve/Geneviève as others have suggested, but that’s a lot of vowels to type and easy to mess up if you have to type it a lot. If you have to shorten it to a nickname no one’s going to remember the full name.
Chantel means singer or to sing
Evangeline, or Evie.
Erik B. says
Angela Grace is my niece’s name, Ann, Ange, Angel, Jelly, Aggy, gracey,
Victoria Rose says
Selene is a great name although it actually originates from Greek mythology she’s the goddess of the moon. Also there’s Lisette, Anouk and Elise that are great names. ?
Victoria Rose says
Or even Kiara which could be shortened to Ki or Kiarada which could be shortened to Ki or Ada
Camille! So pretty!
Can be shortened to Cami, Millie, etc. 🙂
How about Genevieve – lots of ways to shorten it Eve, Gennie, Ginnie
H. Kook says
Mirabelle. Like the plum. You can shorten it to Mira or Belle.
Theodore D. says
Here is my suggestion…
Angelique… Angel or Angela for simplicity
There is also Francinne or Francis…
I’ve always loved Iseult, although it is usually spelled as Yseult in old French. However, I don’t feel it shortens well. Esmé, also is a favorite, but difficult to shorten. Unless you give your heroine a crazy-fun name such as Esmeralda and shorten *that* down to Esmé!
Also, my aunt’s name is Cécile, and the diminutive we use for her sounds like ‘Seal’.
Chalon (city in France) pronounced Sha-lon
My sister in law is named Celeste, bet goes by Cele [pronounced SEELY] 🙂
I call her Cele Wheely, but that might not work for your story 😉
Lenox. If you needed a shorter version, Len would do it.
Kat T. says
How about Paige?
Kat T. says
or Solaine or Solenn, which can be shortened to Sol.
Lizzy G says
Your question made me curious. I know next to nothing about French but I googled it and found two girl names that were interesting…..
Anouk – means grace
Capucine – means hood or cape
Not sure if they would work but it was fun looking.
Lizzy G says
Also found one more….
Astrid – means fair, beautiful goddess
Tanya Nault says
Josephine- Josie – Joe
Antionette- Toni – Anne
Genevieve, Henrietta (Hettie or Ettie), Jessamine, Josephine, Isabella, Philomena, Letitia, Lorena, Lorraine, Rowena, Florence, Matilda, Vivian, Winnifred, Sophronia, Brunhilde?
I found this awesome page a while back for old Victorian era names: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~poindexterfamily/OldNames.html
But the above names are the ones I thought were cool. Except for Florence, that’s my great-aunt’s name.
And Gretchen. Old family name.
Anais / Anouk
Nicked to “Nookie?”
Roxanne W Davenport says
I’m kind of partial to Roxanne. Heh.
Mireille, pronounced Mee-Ray. Shorten to Me or Rey…
These are the names of the female French teachers and staff at my school: Virginie, Alix, Karine, Alissia, Raisa, Parker, Ren, Brigitte, Clara, Estelle, and Zara.
Good luck on you search!!
Sophia, can call her Soph.
Annalise or Anjanette
If you are looking for names, why do I think this is a working R&R break? 🙂
Anaïs, Noémie, Alphonsine, and Élodie. I went to school with an Alphonsine we shortened it to Alfie or alpha when she was bossy.
Pat Sciarini says
When I was pregnant I was looking for a name for my daughter. I was going through an old French book (Medieval times) when the french “e” was pronounced like a french “i” and spelled as such. I came across the name of Hélène which in those days was spelled Ilène and pronounced E-lane. I liked it and that’s why my daughter is named Ilène.
Stephanie Fleming says
My granddaughter is Isabelle. Izzy for short
Amy Nolting says
Twelve Possible (All of French Origin):
9) Marguerite or Margaux
Real French girl names I know
All are so lovely!
Amanda Wolf says
If you haven’t found one yet…. my daughters name is Sonnet Noel and we call her Sunny for short.
Haydee. pronounced I day originally, now usually said as Heidi.
Andrew Cohen says
Genevieve-Gen, Genny, Vie, Veev,
Isabelle or Elizabeth ;see here for shortened versions- http://www.behindthename.com/name/elizabeth
Dominique – I have heard her called Doh-Doh (her parents), Do, Mo, Monique, Dom, Nick…
This is my daughters friends name. They call her VV.
SJ Oltean says
Marie 🙂 ….although the name meaning is supposedly ‘bitter’ :-/
I had a French friend at school called Pascale (Pasc for short) & always thought it was a pretty name.
How about Gabrielle?
Bellatrix “Fighter woman”
Carlota, Caroline – “free woman”
Cecilia or Celia – Ceci
Celina “Young warrior, rendered to Mars”
isabelle , catherine, marjorie, suzanne, Rose
Nathalie – you can short it to Naty or Nat.
Mishelle – Michu, Michie, Mich
Lucrecia – Lu
Ada – This is a short, beautiful name.
Charlotte – Charlie
Adelaide – Addie (Addie is also a short name, not just the short version of Adelaide).
Those are my recomendations 🙂
Carolin – Caro
Madeline – Maddy 🙂
Maybe Leonie or Amelie
I have a French friend. Her full name is Tatiana, her nickname is Tania
Collette, nickname “Letty”.
Céline, Sabine, Véronique (Ronnie)
Hello ! I’m french and i’m from Provence. Here’s some Provence names, with short version :
1) Magali : Maggie
2) Adèle : Addie
3) Amélie : Amy
4) Estelle : Stelly
7) Solange : Solly
8) Last but not least, my daughter’s name, Liselotte : Lottie
Hope this would be useful.
Sorry, but please NOT Fanny – this is a female sexual body area in UK/IRL
lol, I didn’t realise it meant a DIFFERENT body part in the US, I was very surprised in a mild-ish romance-ish book one day to have the guy pat her on her fanny it was a “WTF! that-didn’t-make-compute” moment for me XD
Lisette? Nickname Lis, or Lis-y? xx 🙂
Nicolette can be shortened to Nicole, Nikki, or even Colette or Lettie if you’re feeling particularly French-Cajun. It’s one of my personal favorites.
Hello, is Jehanne another spelling of Janine? (Jah-nih n) I hadn’t seen that?
Adele or Helene….or maybe Belle
Avery Armstrong says
I named my daughter Camelia. I like Iris and Violette as well and Giselle is pretty.
My niece is Jocelyn, we call her Josie or Jo.
I also personally love Giselle, Celeste, and Léone (which is a little old fashioned, but not nearly as bad as Eadgifu, and it means lion which is cool).
Also Odette. What can I saw, I did ballet as a teen 🙂
Lisette – Lis
Mireille – Miri
Camille – Cam or Cami
Isabeau / Isabeaux, Bo for short
Mariélle? shortened to Mari
Noire or Blanche
Are twins in my daughters school, both names are french in origin and short enough that they don’t have to be shorted
Or Catherine, Cat for short
Someone name her girl Noire? That really doesn’t seem nice to me.
Blanche is a old-fashioned name, but at least it’s a real name. Calling her twin Noire really sounds like they wanted to have a piano.
But we do have here in France twins named Starsky and Hutch, so I shouldn’t be surprised.
(And a Cliti, for Cliti Wood*, of course).
* Clint Eastwood
Aude Bourniquel says
Isabelle is the official french spelling for Isabel.
Older sounding but nice :
Marguerite (shortened Margot)
Joséphine (Jo, Josette)
This is the first results going through my contact list. If you need more, just ask.
Love your books,
crazy teach says
Hi, I come after the storm and what a storm!
Unfortunately, many suggestions would not be given to a French girl, so it all depends if you want a French, or a French sounding name.
(Francis for example is only for a guy).
So, coming in very late, in the perspective you would be naming a French Girl, (from about 25 years ago, not now):
Geneviève (short is Gégé), Amélie (Lili), Sophie (Soso), Camille (although androgynous).
Names of some of my colleagues (French, living in France): Corinne, Nathalie, Christine, Julie or Julia, Lea, Nadine, Emmanuelle (Manue), Mélanie, Manila (rare), Melissa, Emilie.
Not good at all in that perspective: Evangeline, Simone (really not cool), Monique, Yvonne, Mireille…
But it really depends on your heroine and where she comes from.
Laurence, French female reader
If you want a badass French girl name, Aliénor is one I would have loved to have or to use for my girls.
Margot is really a good choice.
For Isabelle, yes it would need the additional L and E.
Aude or Maude is appropriately short and they are really nice imo
And I take this opportunity to thank you for naming one of your badass heroine Sophie, my all time favorite name, that I have given to my first girl.
(second one is Chloé).
Great reading you always,
Dominique, Dom. Sounds pretty badass to me \__(°^°)__/
Heloise (silent ‘H’) El-o-ezze
USA/UK version: Eloise
short versions – El, Hel; Helly; Izzy, Lois
I always loved Isabelle too and Gabrielle.
Shelley Henley says
124 Gwynne Street
Shelley Henley says
I have no idea what happened that an address was published but the comment was written as : I really like Ysabeaux … Ysa, Isa, Bea, Beaux, Bel, Bella ….
Arabella – Bella or Bell
Isabelle is pretty. Bellele <3
Other pretty names:
Angelina – Lina
Coralie – Li
Desiree – Desi
Josephine – Fifi
Vivienne – Vivi
Violetta – Etta
Mathilda – Tilda
Mireille – Miro
Rosemarie – Rosie
Celine sounds pretty kick ass
A shorter version of it can be Cee or even Celie.
Karen O'Neill says
Angelique, short form Angel
Gina Toupin says
Kira Hagen says
I always liked Annick.
Audra: “Noble strength”
Pippi: “Rosy cheeked”
Simone: “He heard”
I was wondering about the kind of female who can take Hugh. Then I had that vivid image of Poison Ivy in my head, with her poisonous lips and hate for men – and love for plants and not much more and I laughed for good five minutes. 😀 I really cant wait to see what’ll happen. :))
And I love name Melangele, Mimi.
How about Lorraine. It’s a region in Northeastern France and my sisters name. The shortened forms are Lori, Raine(y), and Reina. We call my sister Rain and Rainy Ruth but depending on what you are developing the character to be the whole Reina/ queen thing could be nice.
My grandmother who I was named after was Rosalie which is the French version of a Latin name everyone called her Rose.
Love that film.
Lori Beth says
I had the same idea! Isabeau would be perfect.
Absolutely! My pick too.
Linda smith says
Lucine. Lucy for short.
How about Eugenie with a soft drawn out g, rather than the hard g, rather like “jhay” in sound. Can be shortened to Genie, again with the soft drawn out g rather than to rhyme with Jeanie
Nicole B says
Evangeline, Eva for short.
Josephine. You can shorten to Jo or josie.
Joelle, diminutive Jo or Joie.
Christine Green says
Muriel, Sabine, Celine, Alyce
Jenae, Janelle, Chantelle
Marie – Mae or Mary
Antoinette -Toni, Ann
Adela – Del
Aurore – Rory
Charlotte – Charlie, Lottie
Corinne – Cory, Corrie
Éléonore – Ellie, El
Emmanuelle – Manny, Elle
Henriette – Henry, Henri, Ret
Joséphine – Jo, Phina
Bernadette or Dette
amy brennan says
Jacqueline diminutives could be Jack or Jackie or JC. Means supplanter or may God protect.
Deseree…..or Des for short.
or Dizzy for short eh 🙂
Mandy young says
Isabella, is my daughter’s name, we call her Izzy or Bella.
Kelly Jacobs says
My French grandmother: Vivian
Claudine – shortened to Claud/Claudi/Dini (I have no idea why my friend shortened her name that way!)
Elizabet – Ellie/Liz
Marielle – Mari
Melody – Mel
Therese/Terese (I’m pretty certain one of the e’s is supposed to have something on top of it.) – Resa/Rissa
Sherri C says
Ellen Z says
Ellen Z says
It’s Bo for nickname
Emmanuelle=Emma, Emmy, Elle, Elly, Nell, Nelly
If you like Isabel, why not go for the French spelling: Isabelle?
Gabrielle – Gaby
Emelie – Em for short
Natalie – Nat for short
Lucinda — Louie or Lucy for short?
Isabel – Izzy would always remind me of the very large human girl, in the dragon series by G.A. Aiken.
No matter the new character, I’d be thinking of her playing, “Run and Jump,” jumping from one dragon to another.
Library elder says
Eleanor short Ella
Gina M Mora says
Rosamonde (Rosa or Rose)
Giselle (Gigi or Ella)
If you want to get your Occitan on, Magali is good. I’ve always been partial to Sidonie and Severine as well, or Madeleine or Eleanor.
My favorite movie – Ladyhawke, with Michelle Pfeiffer – her name was Isabeau.
Our daughter is named Isabelle, Izz for short. Could have been Belle as well. Over the years it has also been a constant source of entertainment – BabyBelle, DoorBelle, MotherBelle, NickelBelle – the list is endless.
BTW – thrilled that I’m seeing Roland snippets! So much for not doing anything for a while – his story must be nagging at you to get out, huh? Bad for you – Good for us!! ❤
Don’t know if anyone else has suggested this.
Marie, nicknamed either Reb or Bit. Because any form of Mary means rebel or bitter. I know this because my sister’s combined first and middle names come out to constant rebellion, and my combination is bitter truth.
Cherie Lyon says
Marie is easy, short and sweet.
Lol, I was about to suggest Isabel, also!
Gwendolyn or Gwenovier (Gwen)
I like Aurielle – nickname Auri or Elle
It’s actually of latin origin and means – golden.
But it sounds French 😉
Cherie Lyon says
Marie is easy, short and sweet. I lke Auri, tho.
I love Veronique. It happens to be my name so lucky me 🙂
For one week in college I allowed some newly discovered friends to call me Nique ( pronounced neek). By the weekend it had morphed into Zeke ( pronounced zeek). Needless to say there were no more nicknames thereafter.
I have a particularly long and cumbersome name including French, Norwegian with Portuguese influence, and one I am convinced my mother’s best friend just made up. Yet I have avoided nicknames (from non family member… hard to argue with people who changed your diaper) by simply not answering to any other names. Harsh but totally works.
Good luck with your name search.
Cherie Lyon says
Please don’t use Cherie… i don’t know any Frenchwomen named something so obvious as ‘beloved’.
Marie is good, syntaxically current in numerous languages.
Héloïse/Heloise or Elle/Ella for short (I’m not biased at all) 😉
Véronique (shorten Vero)
Violette (shorten Vio)
Vero implies truth.
my sister name is Cibelle it can be shortened to Bell or Belle
My French mom’s name: Yvonne, or my middle name: Yvette, Yve or Eve for short.
How about Augustine?
and Auggie for the short name?
Augustine implies august nature and
Auggie implies earthly.,
Isabeau or eleanore
Maggie Coon says
Brigitte. Shortened to Bri.
Genevieve . The medieval saint and patroness of Paris, said to have defended it from Attila the Hun through courage, rational thinking and prayer.
I asked my mother who’s fluent in French for some suggestions:
Jeanette – possibly shortened to Jane/Jean
Anne-Marie (classic French name)
Nicolette – possibly shortened to Colette
Mavis (s is not pronouced)
Allie L says
My friend Jeannette went by the nicknames “Nette” & “Nettie”.
Yes! That’s a great nickname too.
Henrietta H says
Or perhaps in the spirit of Murielle- maybe Mariel?
For sure! Now that you mention it… I actually had a childhood friend called Mariel, although she was from the Philippines originally.
In high school French class, the “french” name I was assigned was Delphine. Could be shortened to Del, so it meets that requirement at least.
Me, too! Mine was Juliette. Back then, I thought it was strange and silly, but it was fun.
Florence or Flo for short ?
I always check this website for ideas : http://www.behindthename.com/
You get names from different origins and their meaning.
I like Isabel and you could always call her Bell.
I like the name Geneviève (patron saint of Paris), with Gen for the short form
Cat McC says
I know two Frenchwomen, one named Genevieve or Gen for short and one named Christine or Chrissy for short.
Vivien vi. Isabeau. Bo or bell.
Alienor – Al(i)
Éléonore, with Ellie for short ?
Marie ? (Might be too generic though…)
Claire pr Lise could work I guess…?
Angelique shortens to Angel – Geli – Angie not so french sounding
Manon or Solange
Adalyn >Ada, Lyn, Dilly – Noble
Adelina >Ada, Adele, Del, Della, Lina – Noble
Alisanne >Alis, Alisa, Lisa, Anne – Noble, exalted
*Alixandra >Alix, Xana, Xandra, Andy – Defender of mankind
*Ambrosina >Amy, Sina – Immortal
Camilla >Cam, Milla, Cilla – Freeborn, noble
Carina >Cara, Rina – Dear, Beloved
Charletta >Char, Letta, Lettie – Free
Coletta >Letta, Letty, Lettie, Cole – Victorious, Necklace
Esmeraude >Esme, Mera – Emerald
Estelle >Essy, Stella – Star
Fantina >Fanny, Tina – Childlike
*Genevieve >Gina, Vieve – Woman, White wave
Jeannette >Jean, Anna, Annette, Netty – God is gracious
I put an asterisk next to my favorites, but I liked a lot of these.
I also had a thought that it would be amusing if she had a cutsy name and didn’t like it because people didn’t take her seriously. ?
Marcelline, or Germaine
My great grand mother’s name was Diadema….
And I believe her nickname was ‘Dema’…
Have no clue if it’s french…
Hope this helps…
Nicolette, Colette, Nic, Niki, Cole, Lette
I like Lydia, it’s not French but I still love it! ? It can be shortened to Liddy
What about isaboe? not sure if that’s the right spelling but strong, French and can be soft with an issy nickname.
Leigh Rathbone says
Coralie or Margarete or Eloise. Sorry not much help with names
Andrea B says
Evangeline. You can shorten it to Eve or Eva or Evie (depending on age). There is also Lisette (can be shortened to Liese … pronunced Leez).
Bijou means little jewel
Cendrine – short name “Dine” pronounced “Dean” in English
You’ve probably already picked a name but I’ll go out on a limb and suggest my name, Amélie. Though I realize that is heavily associated with the movie and I get asked that quite a lot actually “Like the movie?”(I’m nothing like the movie but anyways) So I’ll throw some out from my own French family/friends and you can see what works:
– Sandrine (this is my sister’s name and while not outdated not many seem to have it)
– Margaux (French usually spells it with -aux at the end, -ot is more the anglophone way)
– Raphaëlle (this IS a girl’s name! A lot of people don’t realize the name is unisex in French, my BFF is named this)
And just other French names I like:
Brigitte. can be shorted to Bri, bridg or Gitte. I really like Gitte
As mentionned before many propositions in these pages are outdated first names. For example when I search this site of current first names: http://www.journaldesfemmes.com/prenoms/
the first 10 are very short and nothing like the Genevièvre so recommanded here:
Emma (its the short version for Emmanuelle but directly given as such),
If I go to this site we have: http://www.prenoms.com/edito-prenoms/tendances-prenoms-o111291.html
Inès (more spanish than french but…)
Admittedly it’s the tendance for this year. If we look at the most given first names since 1946 we have
But this list as a bias with the post WW2 baby boom. Word of advice, Isabeau may be a beautiful french first name but it’s particulary rare in France since 1900 as only 200 girls got that name. It’ an old first name with Isabelle its preferred version.
We are looking for names with medieval flair. 🙂
Aliénor then maybe? From Aliénor d’Aquitaine, queen of Francs ant then of England by marriage. It could be shortened into Ali. It has this medieval flair you’re looking for and it is French.
OK on the second site looking a little further they give
with names like
Berthe ( Berthe au grand pied, Bertrade de Laon, mother of Charlemagne)
pretty much all this first names are unknown nowadays
I know an Isabeau!!! …And he’s a guy ?
In French it should be spelled Isabelle ☺ and it’s usually shortened as Isa, never Belle (coz , you know, Belle = Beauty and that’s a heck of a nickname to carry… for a human. Lots of pet by that name though. Lots).
If it’s contemporary, how old is she?
And : are you ready to deal with unusual characters (é, è, ç)?
Gemma? Sylvie? Micheline? Suzette?
Annie? Nathalie? Ghislaine?
Valérie? Ariane? Julie? (Most popular name in my class, we had more than one per year)
Élodie? Léanne? (My nieces ?)
Françoise? Josée? Chantal?
Perenelle (Nicolas Flamel wife’s name fyi, lol)
Man you must have so many names by now 🙂
Holly H says
Monique – French with Latin origin, meaning Alone..
How about Giselle/Gisele?
As for “medieval” sounding, here is the history of the name, even though its a Germanic root:
Derived from the Germanic word gisil meaning “hostage” or “pledge”. This name may have originally been a descriptive nickname for a child given as a pledge to a foreign court. It was borne by a daughter of the French king Charles III who married the Norman leader Rollo in the 10th century. The name was popular in France during the Middle Ages (the more common French form is Gisèle).
Marguerite … shorten to Mags.
Jehanne (old French feminine form of Iohannes — John/Joan)
Melisende (old French form of Millicent) or Melisent (c 1201)
Aalis or Alix (Old French form of — you guessed it — Alice)
Ysabel or Ysbel (seems to be the Medeival spelling, from what I can tell)
John Roper says
A good abbreviation for Isabel is Izzy. I had a student who went by that.
Z. A. Z. says
Leonie, shortened to Leo?
Arielle: “Lioness of God”
What about Ambroise? Ambroise, shortened to Amber. Meaning: immortal.
Ćelińe- Sky, heaven.
Anaïse- Grace. ( maybe shortened to Ana.)
Dulcelina- Unknown. (Celina? Ina? Lina?)
Oriane- Golden. (Raine?)
So there. Phew.
Me: Personally, I really like Ambroise shortened as Amber. As in Amber the rock. A golden rock.
An old rock. Millions of years old.
You: Makes face. So?
Me: So????? Gah! The name implies that whoever has that name could be resilient, beautiful, and badass just like the stone.(We found a mosquito in it! Even after millions of years.)
There are a lot of beautiful names here. I do hope you love them. Thanks for asking.
What about Mireille (pronounced Mir-ray…with a barely rolled r) and Mir or Miry for short?
Marguerite. That name was used for the Scarlet Pimpernel’s wife and she could kick butt when it came down to it.
Some french queens
Lea Bourgeois says
Ohh I’m French so I have a ton of ideas =D :
– Léonie (in short Leo)
– Anne-Sophie (in short Anne So)
– Muriel (in short Riel)
– Olivia (in short Oli)
– Léana (in short Léa)
– Justine (in short Jus)
– Elise (in short Lise or Lisa)
Estelle is French for Star. My grandmother wanted to name me that, so I think it might have been popular around 60-70 yrs ago.
Corrine – Corey?
I’m late to the party, but how about Lucie. It’s feminine, but Lu is definitely “kick ass”. Or as she is called by her brothers, Louie.
Giselle, Gis or Elle for short
Henrietta H says
Mariel (as mentioned earlier in a subcomment, though its more spanish…)
Angela Shikany says
One of my kids had a schoolmate named Berenger. (behr-en-zjay) Always thought it a gorgeous name
Kate (NB) says
How about Camille. or Remy?Two names I have always liked.
Eliane…could be shortened to El or Eli
Marguerite…could be Rita
Cindy M. says
Corinne. It’s both old fashioned and coming back into fashion.
I work with a woman originally from France named Elodie. It’s a soft and pretty name.
Manon des sources man on is diminutive of Marie.
Sidney Shaola says
How bout Camille. Cam for short.
Margot D. says
Claire, Coralie (Coco), Salomé, Anne, Romane (Romie), Myriame (Mymy/Mimi), Mélodie (Mélo), Emmanuelle (Manue), Noémie (Nono), Manola (Mano), Manon, Clémentine (Clem), Alison (Ali) , Léa, Lou, Lauriane, Daphné (Daph), Émilie (Milou, Mimi), Morane, Cécile, Nina, Caroline (Caro), Danielle (Dany), Colette – though that’s a bit old-fashion, pretty much everything ending in -ette is a grandma name, Joséphine (Jo), Magalie (Mag), Anaïs, Victoire (Vic), Ophélie.
Margot D. says
Valérie (Val), Mélanie (Mel), Françoise, Élise, Tabatha, Tina, Erwanna, Agathe, Heloïse, Hortense, Julia (Ju), Auriana, Noélie, Orane, Célia, Vivianne, Vanille, Cassandra (Cass), Jade, Élia.
Wow that’s help. No mention of my favorite name ever though.
“Spot” in french I think it’s “Tache”
I like Estelle. Ez or Stell for short.
Oona Pilot says
Isabeau = Isabel for short Izzie or Beau…
Fleur. May have already been said as I haven’t gone through all the comments, I would have called my second child this but he turned up a boy :-D.
Kimberly N. says
My husband’s Swedish cousin’s French wife is named Veronique and they call her Vero for short.
How about Monelle? (soft o like Monday) – nickname is Mo. This is actually my name (I spell if differently so it’s always mispronounced – this spelling is phonetically correct). We think it’s French – we are not positive. I looked for its origin years ago and found it used as a French last name. I was named after my Great Aunt who was 100% Irish, but her parents first settled in Canada before coming to the US so there may have been some French influence there – it’s a mystery.
And because of the nickname Mo everyone thinks I’m Maureen which has led to some hilarity because I didn’t know for years that Mo was short for Maureen – I didn’t know a Maureen. I used to get a crazy amount of wrong numbers (people asking for Maureen) until finally someone recognized my voice and we figured it out – good times 🙂
Etoile — means star in english
Liana, Lianne, Leonie, Therese, Yvette?
Monique is French and it can me shortened to Mo.
I’ve always loved Celeste, CeCe for short.
susan boone says
Solange. Sol or Sola. Or Ange, I suppose.
I like Lisette, too. LeeLee.
Valerie Hockens says
Well, Valerie of course; what else?
Loïc – Loc
Maël – May
Solène – Sol
Lylou – Lie
Héloïse – Hel
Amelie, shortened to Amy/Ammie/Mel/Mellie
Love your books by the way…. i’ve prepared my ebook reader with all your books to reread a third time for my trip!
Ok Sylvie and Sissi for short (prononced Cece)
Jenifer Schlosser says
Mireille. It is pronounced “mir AY” and means “to admire.” Miri for short.
Marjie West says
Lucianna: Luci for short
Fiona,then you could call her Fifi.
VALARIE COTTON says
I like Loretta. Etta for short.
Nathalie, Charlotte, camille, Anne-Cecile, Jeanne, Marie- Claire sooooo many to chose….;o)
A lot of double names get called bei their Initals …my boyfriend’s name is Jean-Baptiste and he is called JB.
Helen Capon says
Siobhán is the Irish name for Joan.
Fiona is Irish/Scottish.
Caitríona is the Irish for Catherine – my daughter + mother-in-law – ‘Ina’ (I-na) for short.
Cherie or Cher for short. Cherie is both a name and an endearment. Everyone saying your name is also calling you darling. Cheryl or Cheri
Simone, Yvette, Aurelia, Serena, Annette, Elisabetta
Chiara ( Chandramas ) says
Josette, (I’ve a 80 years old friend born in France called like that )
Sorry I can’t help much with French, but if you need Italian… just ask!
Amelia Paige says
Sidonie – Sid for short
Anouk – An for short
Josephine – Josie or Phinie for short
Delphine – Del or Delphi for short
Amelia Paige says
Mathilda – Tilly or Tilda for short
veronika cz says
I like Marion or Geneviev
I’ve always liked Merle, which means blackbird.
Hoo there are many. ^^
On the down to earth side you got names like Marthe ( Mattie), Caroline (Caro), … hard consonnants.
The the flowery ones: Léandra (Léa), Eléonore (Nono, Ellie), Arianne (Anne), Florence (Flo), Hortencia (ok, very old).
I love Ladyhawke so Isabeau for me! She kicked butt!
Couldn’t u shorten it to Isa instead of Izzy?
except they don’t really need shortening. I liked the idea of using initials
Catherine Antoinette Marie => Cam
I’ve met Sidonie/Sid and Arianne in other urban fantasy with supernats. like the names, but….
242 Grove St
Clothilde. Kind of archaic but readable in English. Clo.
I’ve always been a fan of Ysabeau. Can be shortened to Ysa (“izz-aah”).
Margueritte, Margot for short?
sarah eisele says
Cirette / Ciretta (Ette/Etta)
Anastasie (Ana / “Zee”)
Adelina (Lina / Addy)
Amalie. Ami could be the shortname. I also happen to be working from Amalie’s French Bakery in Charlotte right now, so I’m pretty sure that had something to do with my choice 🙂
Mireille (can be short for Myra or Mira). Or Mirielle (short for Miri).
Jude C says
Genevieve – with the G as a Zh sound, and Gen or Geni or Vivi as nicknames
How about Brienne? Shortened it could be Bri.
Home about Evangeline
M Bible says
That’s my vote!!! It’s beautiful.
Evangeline can be shortened to Eva or Eve or Evie. Also recommend Vianne or Sophie.
Suzanne, shortens to Suz. It is pretty awesome.
Crystal Rogers says
My nieces name is Angellé and her mom calls her Jelly.
Valeria meaning strong, valerous or brave. Can be shortened to Val, Eria, or Ria.
Deb Windom says
Angelique. Can be shortened to Angie, Ange, and even Gigi.
sharon aubuchon says
My sister’s name is Renee Deanna.
Minuet , minnie
kylie j says
Heloise (as in Heloise and Abelard) could be shortened to Hel, El, Lou, Lo your choice depending on what the character is and of course who her friends are 🙂
My concern with Isabeau/Ysabeau is that Deborah Harkness’ All Souls Worlds trilogy has a fairly fabulous character in it called Ysabeau de Clermont.
Yes. Also Isabeau is the name of the main character, a succubus, in the Canadian supernatural series “Lost Girl.” The name is beautiful, though.
Angelique , Jacqueline, Domenique.
Genevieve – I call my little muffin Evie 🙂
I’m throwing out there Chantal (Tali, bonus- it means “tough like stone.), Collette (Lettie), Bijou, Angelique, Madeleine, and Nicolette (Nico). Hope it helps.
Francesca shortened to France
As I had to work through several name-books (4 daughters 😉 ) and I wanted something more unique, here some names that came on the “list” and some of it I’ve even picked (all french):
Yolanda (Andy), Jaqueline (Linny), Adrien(n)e, Nadine, Veronique, Julienne, Amelia, Vivienne, Yvonne and last but not least Yvette.
Amanda Garza says
Arielle meaning the lion of god. Nicknames could be Ari, Elle, Ellie or even Ri. It’s a strong warrior name fitting of a tough heroine 🙂
What about Eleanor? As in Eleanor of Aquitaine…
Actually, in France, it was Aliénor or Eléonore.
Eleanor is the English version of that name (just learned that because I googled it to check).
Lise or Lisette
Xena – Warrior Princess!
Daliya Varghese says
Daliya…. I know it’s not French but it’s a pretty uncommon name, though I say so myself.. :p ..Nicknames could be Dal, Dals or Dali…. Alternate spellings like Dhalia, Dalia and Dhaliah are also there….
Ariel Harris says
Melissande, a beautiful name.
What about Vivianne, or Jaquline?? Vid or Jaq for short.
Lucille? It means “shining” and can be shortened to Lucy or Luce.
How about Fiona
christina smurawa says
Marguerite? She can still be Meg or any of the other (many!) nicknames for Margaret, as well as Rita or Reet.
Josephine, Short forms, Joe, Josie. Meaning she shall add.
Oh! This is my chance to propose my grandmother’s name: Oriane. She loved when I called her Ria or Riane with my Spanish accent, but I remember that some people called her Oria or Orie.
Also Éliane, shortened to Lia.
Wlihelmina….Willa, Mina, Willie
Jocelyn……….Joss, Jess, Lyn, Cel, Cellie, Jo
Carolina (caroleena) Caro, Lina
I like Vivienne
This will be buried, but I wanted to put my two cents into the bucket:
Kimberly Houle says
My Great Aunt’s name was unique, Nacha. Not sure if it was French but it was a cool name.
Wina Nolan says
Lidwina … it is a Dutch/German origin but they have the French version : Lydwine …. or Wina for short