What Does the Name Mae Mean?


Choosing a name for your child is an important decision that parents make. The meaning and origin of a name can have an impact on the child’s life and personality. In this article, we will explore the meaning of the name Mae and its origins.

Mae: Meaning and Origin

Mae is a female given name that has different meanings and origins. The most common meaning of the name Mae is “pearl” in English, which comes from the Old English word “mǣg.” The name Mae is also considered to be a variant of May or Mary, which means “bitter” or “beloved” respectively.

The origin of the name Mae can be traced back to different cultures and languages. In Chinese culture, Mae means “beautiful” or “graceful” and is written as 玫 (méi) or 梅 (méi). It is also a popular surname in China. In Japanese culture, Mae means “front” or “before” and is written as 前. In Celtic culture, Mae means “the causeway” and is derived from the Irish word “maigh,” meaning plain or field.

Famous People Named Mae

There are many famous people with the name Mae who have made significant contributions in various fields. Some of them are listed below:

  1. Mae West: An American actress, singer, comedian, and playwright who was known for her wit and sex appeal in the early 20th century.
  2. Mae Jemison: An American engineer, physician, and astronaut who became the first African American woman to travel in space.
  3. Mae Whitman: An American actress who has appeared in several popular TV shows and movies, including “Arrested Development” and “The Duff.”
  4. Mae Murray: An American actress and dancer who was one of the most popular stars of silent films in the early 20th century.
  5. Mae Clarke: An American actress who appeared in several classic films, including “Frankenstein” and “Public Enemy.”

Popularity of the Name Mae

The popularity of the name Mae has fluctuated over time. According to the Social Security Administration, Mae was a popular name for baby girls in the early 1900s but declined in popularity in the following decades. However, the name has seen a resurgence in recent years. In 2020, it was ranked as the 539th most popular name for baby girls in the United States.

Variations and Nicknames of Mae

There are several variations and nicknames that can be derived from the name Mae. Some of them are:

  1. May
  2. Maeve
  3. Mabel
  4. Maisie
  5. Mamie

Famous Characters Named Mae

The name Mae has been used for several fictional characters in popular culture. Some of them are:

  1. Mae Borowski: A character from the video game “Night in the Woods.”
  2. Maeby Fünke: A character from the TV show “Arrested Development.”
  3. Mae Munroe: A character from the movie “The Big Sleep.”
  4. Mae Tuck: A character from the children’s book “Tuck Everlasting.”
  5. Maeve Millay: A character from the TV show “Westworld.”


In conclusion, the name Mae has different meanings and origins that can be traced back to various cultures and languages. It is a popular name for baby girls that has been used for several famous people and fictional characters throughout history. Whether you choose the name Mae for your child because of its meaning or simply because you like the sound of it, it is a lovely name that will stand the test of time.


  1. Is the name Mae considered a traditional name?
    • Yes, the name Mae is considered a traditional name that has been used for several generations.
  2. What are some famous songs with the name Mae in the title?
    • Some famous songs with the name Mae in the title are “Mae” by The Gaslight Anthem and “Mae” by Elliott Smith.
  3. How do you pronounce the name Mae?
    • The name Mae is pronounced as “may.”
  4. What are some popular middle names that go well with Mae?
    • Some popular middle names that go well with Mae are Elizabeth, Grace, Rose, and Louise.
  5. Is the name Mae more popular for baby girls or boys?
    • The name Mae is typically used for baby girls and is less commonly used for boys.

I am Patricia Mann, an experienced professional in the art of naming children. With a wealth of knowledge in the field of baby names, I aim to assist parents in choosing a meaningful and beautiful name for their little ones. My expertise lies in the Name Meaning section, where I delve deep into the origins and significance of names, providing valuable insights that I hope will be beneficial for parents.

Understanding the profound impact a name can have on a child's life, I strive to offer comprehensive guidance. The Name Meaning section is not just a repository of information but a resource where parents can discover the rich tapestry of meanings associated with different names. It is my belief that a child's name is more than just a label; it encapsulates the desires, hopes, and love of the parents.

In this journey of baby naming, my goal is to make the process enjoyable and meaningful for parents, ensuring that the chosen name resonates with the family's values and cultural background. I invite you to explore the Name Meaning of Impeccable Nest section as we embark on the delightful and important task of naming the newest members of your family.

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