Baby Names

Baby names that sound like Sophia include Josephine, Cecilia, and Amelia.
Ana Francisconi / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images

26 Baby Names Like Sophia In Sound Or Meaning

Love the elegant vibe? Here are some others to consider.

Updated: 
Originally Published: 

Every generation has their popular names, and based on all the lists of the most popular baby names from the past year, your kids will know a lot of Olivias, Emmas, and Sophias. But don't worry, there are plenty of baby names like Sophia you can consider for your baby girl if you love that name, but want something that hasn't caught on just yet.

If your little one has older siblings, you’re probably familiar with Sofia the First, a Disney Junior princess who makes the name sound incredibly royal. Given the popularity of the name Sophia (or Sofia, Sophie, and Sofie) resurging during the 1990s and 2010s in the Western world, it’s fun and interesting to think where the popularity arose from. Suggested influences for the name trend include Modern Family actress Sofía Vergara and The Virgin Suicides and Marie Antionette filmmaker Sofia Coppola, but who’s really to say? Perhaps Game of Thrones’ Sophie Turner, One Tree Hill’s Sophia Bush, or Sophie from Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl's Moving Castle? The list of potential inspiration goes on and on.

Chances are, you know a Sophia personally. After all, the meaning behind the name is beautiful, so it’s no wonder it gained such popularity recently. But in case you want to venture outside of such common names, there are lots of baby names like Sophia that exist. For a little more background on the name and how common it really is, read on.

Sophia Name Origin, Meaning, And Popularity

The given name Sophia is first recorded as being used in the beginning of the 4th century AD. The baby name Sophia has roots in Greek origins and means "wisdom,” as it comes from the Greek word sophos, which translates to wise. History lesson: Remember Sophocles, the play writer from ancient Greece? Seems like a wise dude. There are also lots of saints named Sophia in the Catholic church, so it's definitely associated with femininity and power.

In terms of popularity, Sophia is always up there in the top baby names of the year in the U.S. In 2020, the number of births with the name Sophia was 12,976, ranking it as the fifth most common baby girl name in the country, as reported by the Social Security Administration. In fact, according to federal data, the name Sophia has continually been in the top 10 most popular baby girl names since 2005 — and it was still pretty popular before that, too.

Sophia is indeed a lovely name, but if you’re in search of something a little less common, there are plenty of names like Sophia to choose from. So, if you already know a Sophia or two (or three) and your daughter would be spending lots of time around them, it makes sense as to why you'd investigate some alternate (but still similar) baby names. Here are 26 names like Sophia for you to consider.

1

Cecilia

Shutterstock

Cecilia is a gorgeous first name you don't hear too often on the playground, but you will find it in the pages of Atonement, The Virgin Suicides, and The Hunger Games. Oh, and that one Simon & Garfunkel song. It has similar sounds to the name Sophia and the same number of syllables, so it tops the list of Sophia-adjacent name options.

2

Serena

Do you even need to be reminded of all the amazing Serenas in the world your little one could take after? The name is Latin for "tranquil" or "serene” — adjectives that don’t apply to most newborns, but maybe your sweet baby Serena will be the exception. Moms who like the name Sophia may be drawn to Serena if they’re also fans of Gossip Girl or Sailor Moon.

3

Josephine

Josephine may not seem like the obvious alternative to Sophia, but it just works. It has the same old-school, upscale vibes and the same number of syllables. Josephine is an English name derived from Joseph, and it means “god will add.” If you’ve been waiting for a little girl to complete your family, a moniker with that meaning may feel extra special. Plus, you can call her “Jo,” for Little Women vibes.

4

Sylvia

Sylvia is Latin for "woodland," so parents who love the outdoors or have special memories in nature may take a liking to this Sophia alternative. It ranked at #833 in the popularity rankings in 2020, so no worries there, and much like Sophie for Sophia, Sylvie would make a darn cute nickname.

5

Amelia

Amelia Mignonette Thermopolis Renaldo, princess of Genovia fans, this one's for you. Amelia is a German name meaning "work," so your little princess won't be afraid to get her hands dirty. Consider Emilia too, which shouldn't be a hard sell considering Emilia Clarke has become everyone's favorite dragon queen.

6

Fiona

Shutterstock

Fiona is an Irish name meaning "fair" or "pale.” Another name with royal connections, Fiona is probably best known as the feisty princess and ogre in the Shrek movies. Plus, it’s just a super pretty name.

7

Sabina

If you want a name that's completely off the radar, Sabina is it. It was most popular back in the 1880s, but never was that popular of a name. It's a gorgeous, unique name you won't hear in your daughter's classroom, and it has roots in Roman history for parents who are into that sort of thing.

8

Seraphine

Seraphine means "burning ones," is of Hebrew origin, and is so far down the baby name popularity list right now. This is a formal petition to get this name back in the game, because it's too beautiful not to grace your baby's birth certificate. Seraphina is an option, too, if you want an extra syllable.

9

Sonia

Sonia, Sonja, or Sonya, are all other languages' versions of Sophia. Regardless of the spelling, this name also means "wisdom" and shares all the saintly associations Sophia has, like Sophia the martyr and the Hagia Sophia. It’s a really pretty option that doesn’t rank too high in popularity right now, so it’s a trendsetter waiting to happen.

10

Zara

Zara is derived from the classic name Sarah, which means "princess" or "lady." It could also be related to the Arabic name Zahara, which translates to "flower" or "splendor." If any of those meanings speak to you, Zara is an excellent name choice. It's a little shorter than Sophia, but still ends in that 'a' sound, which should flow nicely with whatever middle name you choose.

11

Ophelia

kate_sept2004/E+/Getty Images

Ophelia sounds sort of like Sophia, don't you think? And, as if you needed evidence of how pretty it is, it was invented by an Italian Renaissance poet in the 1500s. It has that ‘oph’ sound and ending ‘a’ sound like Sophia, but is much more uncommon by comparison.

12

Saffi

If you were eyeing the name Sophia because the nickname Sophie is just too precious, Saffi might be the name you've been waiting for. In fact, Saffi is a variation of Sophia and also still means "wisdom," so it keeps a lot of the original characteristics of the name you love, but adds a never-before-heard flair.

13

Samira

Samira is getting more popular thanks to the amazing actress Samira Wiley, who stars in Orange is the New Black and The Handmaid’s Tale. It’s a name of Arabic origin that means “companion in evening conversation.” It’s a cousin of the name Samara, which would make an equally beautiful name choice.

14

Zoe

Zoe shares some similar sounds to Sophie, and similar heritage, too. Zoe is a Greek name meaning "life," and it has been in the top 1,000 most popular names for years, but not nearly as high as Sophia. There are tons of fun spellings if you want to spice it up from the traditional version.

15

Athena

In keeping with the Greek name theme, Athena is a seriously powerful choice for your little warrior. Tina Fey even named her daughter Penelope Athena in 2011. Athena is the Greek goddess of wisdom (another Sophia nod), the arts, and battle, so she’s kind of a multifaceted badass. Your little girl will be, too.

16

Sasha

Shutterstock

This unisex name takes after Sophia's sounds, but is equally as cool as Athena. Sasha is a Russian name meaning "man's defender," so, like, tiny Wonder Woman over here, no big deal. If you liked Sophia because your family is all about S names, Sasha will keep your theme consistent.

17

Cassidy

Sophia is such a lovely, feminine-sounding name. If that's what drew you in, Cassidy might also work for you and your baby. It's an Irish name meaning "curly-haired," and it currently ranks around #366 on the popularity charts. Now imagine your cute little Cassidy with the curls bouncing into pre-K (*swoon*).

18

Phoebe

Phoebe is a Greek name that means "radiant, shining one," which perfectly describes how much joy your new baby will bring to your life. The name appears in Greek mythology as an alternate name for the goddess Artemis, in the Bible, Shakespeare, and in many novels, like Catcher in the Rye (and, of course, in Friends).

19

Elina

Elina is yet another Greek name with a beautiful meaning: "sun ray." Similar names include Alina, Lina, Elliana, and many more, so if this option gets you as excited as Sophia did, don't be afraid to dive down the Elina rabbit hole. Your child is the sunshine in your life, after all.

20

Zosia

If the meaning of Sophia is why you fell in love with it, there are some equally awesome options out there for you that are super unique. Zosia is a Polish name derived from Sophia, so it also means "wisdom." It isn't even ranked on U.S. popularity charts, so you're safe on that front.

21

Sonora

Shutterstock

Does anyone else remember the movie Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken? The protagonist is Sonora, who becomes a daredevil act riding horses off of a high-dive platform. Sonora is a Spanish name meaning "pleasant sounding," and it isn't on any popularity lists at the moment. Seems poised for a daring comeback, don't you think?

22

Chloe

Similar to Zoe, the name Chloe has the same “o” vowel sound as Sophia, which makes it a nice alternative option. Chloe means “blooming” or “fertility” in Greek, as it derives from a Greek word that refers to the young, green foliage of growing plants in the spring. The common scientific prefix “chloro,” as in chlorine and chloroplast, comes from the same root.

23

Freya

In Norse mythology, Freyja, from which the name Freya is derived, is the goddess of love, beauty, and battle (quite the combo) — and she rides on a chariot pulled by two cats, which is both powerful and adorable. Basically, she’s the ultimate revered noble woman. Scandinavian names, in general, are on the rise in the U.S., perhaps in part due to the popularity of the concept hygge.

24

Gianna

The name Gianna has Hebrew and Italian origins and stems from the longer name Giovanna, which is the Italian language version of Jane or Joan, generally meaning "God is gracious." While the name has risen in popularity in the U.S. in the past few decades, it is nowhere near the top of the most common names. Not to mention, the nicknames Gia and Gigi are oh-so-cute for a baby girl.

25

Fiadh

OK, hear me out on this one. An Irish name, Fiadh is pronounced “fee-aa,” which sounds like the last two syllables of Sophia, no? The name is derived from an ancient Irish word meaning “deer” and “wildness,” but also "respect.” So, if you want your little one to be a bit adventurous but also have a sense of respect, this name might just be the one.

26

Aviva

Shutterstock

The name Aviva comes from modern Hebrew origins and is quite unique. It means “springlike,” “dewy,” and “fresh,” and it’s a palindrome, which is always fun. You likely won’t be running into many other Avivas when you bring your daughter to the playground, so if you’re looking for a name that isn’t that common, it should definitely be in consideration.

There are plenty of names like Sophia out there for you to choose from as you brainstorm what to name your daughter. And even if the name Sophia is quite common, it’s popular for good reason, and there is truly nothing wrong with having a name that’s heard often. What matters most is that the name you choose for your baby feels right.

This article was originally published on