The Fascinating Meaning Behind the Name Orlando

Orlando is a name with a rich history and a fascinating meaning. If you’re considering this name for your baby or simply curious about its origins, read on to discover everything you need to know.

What Does Orlando Mean?

The name Orlando has several possible meanings, but it most commonly translates to “famous throughout the land” or “renowned in his country.” This interpretation likely stems from the name’s Germanic roots, as “orl” means “fame” in Old High German.

A Brief History of the Name Orlando

The name Orlando can be traced back to medieval Europe, where it was a popular choice among nobility and royalty. It gained even more prominence after the publication of Ludovico Ariosto’s epic poem “Orlando Furioso” in the early 16th century, which tells the tale of a brave knight named Orlando who embarks on a series of adventures.

In the centuries since, the name has remained popular across Europe and the Americas, and has been borne by numerous notable figures, including Italian composer Orlando di Lasso and British actor Orlando Bloom.

Famous People Named Orlando

As mentioned, there have been many famous people throughout history who bear the name Orlando. Some of the most well-known include:

  • Orlando Bloom: English actor known for roles in movies such as “The Lord of the Rings” and “Pirates of the Caribbean”
  • Orlando Jones: American comedian and actor who has appeared in films like “Office Space” and TV shows such as “American Gods”
  • Orlando Gibbons: English composer from the Renaissance era
  • Orlando Cepeda: Puerto Rican baseball player who was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1999
  • Orlando di Lasso: Flemish composer from the Renaissance era

Popularity of the Name Orlando

Despite its long history, the name Orlando has never been among the most popular baby names in the United States. In 2020, it ranked #479 on the Social Security Administration’s list of top names for boys, with only 568 babies given the name that year.

However, the name has seen a slight uptick in popularity in recent years, perhaps due in part to the aforementioned Orlando Bloom and his high-profile career.

Famous Characters Named Orlando

The name Orlando has also appeared in numerous works of literature, film, and other media, often as the moniker of a brave hero or valiant adventurer. Some examples include:

  • Orlando: The titular character of Ludovico Ariosto’s “Orlando Furioso”
  • Orlando: A character in William Shakespeare’s play “As You Like It”
  • Orlando: A character in Virginia Woolf’s novel “Orlando”
  • Orlando the Marmalade Cat: A beloved children’s book character created by British author Kathleen Hale

Bottom Line

Whether you’re drawn to its meaning, its history, or simply the sound of it, there are plenty of reasons to consider the name Orlando for your child. With its connections to bravery, adventure, and fame, it’s a name that’s sure to leave a lasting impression.


  1. Is Orlando a popular name?
    While it has never been among the most popular names in the United States, Orlando has seen a slight uptick in popularity in recent years.
  2. What does the name Orlando mean?
    The name Orlando most commonly translates to “famous throughout the land” or “renowned in his country.”
  3. Where does the name Orlando come from?
    The name Orlando can be traced back to medieval Europe, where it was a popular choice among nobility and royalty.
  4. Who are some famous people named Orlando?
    Famous individuals with the name Orlando include actor Orlando Bloom, composer Orlando di Lasso, and baseball player Orlando Cepeda.
  5. What are some famous literary characters named Orlando?
    Orlando has appeared in works by authors such as William Shakespeare, Virginia Woolf, and Kathleen Hale.
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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