Origin, Meaning, And History Of Juniper
The name Juniper is of Latin origin and refers to the Juniper tree or berry. It also derives from the Welsh name Guinevere. While many consider Juniper a girl’s name, it can be used for boys too. Juniper also implies ‘young,’ as the tree’s name arises from the word ‘iuniperus.’ In Latin, Juniperus combines the terms’ junio,’ which means young, and ‘parere,’ which implies to produce. As a result, it signifies ‘youth-producing’ or ‘evergreen.’
In Italian, the Juniper tree is called Ginepro (Italian for Juniper), Ginevra, and Ginny. Juniper is used to flavor the alcoholic drink gin. Therefore, gin is considered to have been named after the tree. The traditional drink ‘jenever’ and its French variant ‘genièvre’ are other names for Juniper.
A juniper tree protected the prophet Elijah from Queen Jezebel’s pursuit in the Bible’s Old Testament. In history, Juniper, O.F.M., known as Brother Juniper, is called ‘the renowned jester of the Lord.’ He was one of the original followers of St. Francis of Assisi, the Italian Catholic friar who founded the Franciscans, a popular Christian religious order.
The tree was also seen as an emblem of chastity during the Renaissance period, as seen in Leonardo da Vinci’s painting ‘Ginevra de’ Benci,’ In this portrait, a juniper tree is behind the subject of the painting Ginevra, signifying her chastity.
The name goes by various spellings, such as Juneyper, Junniper, and Junipur. Common nicknames focus on the last and initial syllable of the word and include Pepper, Ginny, June, and Jenny.
Many factors could have sparked the name’s popularity. From the hit 1969 song by Donovan, ‘Jennifer Juniper,’ to the character Juniper in the children’s books by Barbara Park, the name has seen a presence in popular culture. In real-life, actresses and artists such as Jennifer-Juniper Angeli, Juniper Shui, and Juniper Sage are the key name bearers.
How To Pronounce Juniper?
Famous People With The Name Juniper
- Juniper ShueyAmerican visual artist renowned for his sculptural performances
- Juniper SagePen name of the celebrated U.S children’s book author, Margaret Wise Brown
- Jennifer-Juniper AngeliAmerican actress known for her role in The Evil Queen movie
- Toni JuniperBritish campaigner and writer who was also the Executive Director of Friends of the Earth
Juniper On The Popularity Chart
With hardly any takers in the 80s and 90s, the name Juniper took off in the late 2000s. Take a look at the charts below.
Popularity Over Time
The name’s popularity has increased from just 9 babies per million in 1980 to 1981 babies per million in 2021. This graph shows its rise in usage.Source: Social Security Administration
Rank Over Time
From a low of 14260 in 1992, Juniper has reached 138 in 2021. It is now among the more popular names.Source: Social Security Administration
Names With Similar Sound As Juniper
Do you love the sound of Juniper but are still not convinced enough? Here are some more options for you.
Names With Similar Meaning As Juniper
If you want a name that means a Juniper berry, here are some suggestions.