Reyes Name Meaning Origins, Popularity, and Significance

Reyes is a popular surname in the Spanish-speaking world, but it’s also used as a given name. In this article, we’ll explore the origins and meaning of the name Reyes, its popularity over time, and some interesting facts about the name.

What is the Meaning of the Name Reyes?

The name Reyes derives from the Spanish word “rey,” which means “king” or “ruler.” As a given name, Reyes can be used for both boys and girls. It’s often associated with religious celebrations in the Spanish-speaking world, such as El Dia de los Reyes (Three Kings’ Day) on January 6th.

Origins of the Name Reyes

The surname Reyes has its roots in medieval Spain, where it was used to denote someone who worked in a royal household or served as a king’s or queen’s officer. Over time, it became a common surname among the general population, not just those with royal connections.

As a given name, Reyes has been used in various cultures throughout history, including Latin America and the Philippines. In some cases, it’s used to honor a saint or religious figure associated with the Three Kings.

Popularity of the Name Reyes

According to data from the Social Security Administration, Reyes has been a relatively uncommon given name in the United States in recent years. In 2020, it ranked #1,562 for boys and #2,813 for girls. However, the surname Reyes is much more common, ranking #69 on the list of most common surnames in the United States.

Outside the U.S., Reyes is a popular given name in Spanish-speaking countries like Mexico, Spain, and the Philippines. It’s also found in other parts of the world, such as Portugal and Brazil.

Pros and Cons of the Name Reyes


  • Reyes is a unique and distinctive name that’s not too common in the United States.
  • It has a strong meaning associated with royalty and power.
  • It can be used for both boys and girls.


  • Reyes may be difficult for some people to pronounce or spell correctly.
  • It may be perceived as too unconventional or unusual by some people.
  • It could potentially subject the bearer to teasing or ridicule from peers.

Alternatives to the Name Reyes

If you’re considering naming your child Reyes but want some alternative options, here are a few suggestions:

For boys:

  • Alexander (meaning: “defender of the people”)
  • Adrian (meaning: “man of Adria”)
  • Emilio (meaning: “rival”)

For girls:

  • Regina (meaning: “queen”)
  • Isabella (meaning: “pledged to God”)
  • Sofia (meaning: “wisdom”)

How to Choose a Middle Name for Reyes

If you’ve decided to name your child Reyes, you may be wondering what middle name would pair well with it. Here are some tips for choosing a middle name:

  • Consider the number of syllables in your last name. A shorter middle name may sound better with a longer last name, and vice versa.
  • Think about family names or names with special significance to you or your partner.
  • Look for names that have a similar origin or cultural background to Reyes.
  • Try saying the full name out loud to see how it sounds and flows.

Step-by-Step Guide to Pronouncing Reyes

To pronounce Reyes correctly, follow these steps:

  1. Start with the “r” sound, which is made by vibrating the tip of your tongue against the ridge behind your upper teeth.
  2. Move to the “ay” sound, which is pronounced like the word “eye.”
  3. Next comes the “s” sound, which is made by hissing air through your teeth.
  4. Finish with the “ehs” sound, which is pronounced like the word “ace.”

Tips for Naming Your Child Reyes

If you’re considering naming your child Reyes, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Think about how the name will sound and look as your child grows up.
  • Consider the potential nicknames or shortened versions of the name.
  • Look up the meaning and origin of the name to make sure it aligns with your values and beliefs.
  • Discuss the name with family members or close friends to get their input and feedback.

The Best Famous People Named Reyes

Here are some famous people with the given name or surname Reyes:

  • Alfonso Reyes (Mexican writer and diplomat)
  • Anthony Reyes (American baseball player)
  • Arturo Reyes (Colombian football coach)
  • Carlos Reyes (Ecuadorian soccer player)
  • Leo Reyes (Filipino singer)


Reyes is a unique and meaningful name with a rich history and cultural significance. Whether you choose it as a given name or a surname, it’s sure to make a strong impression. By understanding its origins and variations, youcan make an informed decision about whether Reyes is the right name for your child. Remember to consider factors like pronunciation, popularity, and personal significance when choosing a name.

FAQs About the Name Reyes

  1. Is Reyes a popular name in the United States?
  2. No, Reyes is not a very common given name in the U.S., although it’s a popular surname.
  3. What does the name Reyes mean?
  4. Reyes means “king” or “ruler” in Spanish.
  5. Can Reyes be used as a girl’s name?
  6. Yes, Reyes can be used as a unisex name for both boys and girls.
  7. What are some alternative names to Reyes?
  8. Some alternative names for boys include Alexander, Adrian, and Emilio, while alternatives for girls include Regina, Isabella, and Sofia.
  9. Who are some famous people with the name Reyes?
  10. Famous people named Reyes include Mexican writer Alfonso Reyes, American baseball player Anthony Reyes, and Ecuadorian soccer player Carlos Reyes.
Emma Carole Paradis

We’re Emma Carole Paradis and Kimberly Carole, the owners and designers of Impeccable Nest, based in Bedford, New Hampshire. A mother-daughter team with a love of design. Originally from Manhattan Beach, California, now based in Bedford, New Hampshire, we bring a Southern California cool and New England tradition to our design. Not only do we work together…we also live together in a multi-generational home…and a home that they are known to design for others.

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