Alison (given name)

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Pronunciation/ˈælɪsən/ AL-i-sən
Meaning"Alice's son" or "little Alice"
Other names
Variant form(s)Alisoun, Alisson, Allison, Allisson, Allyson, Allysson, Alyson, Alysson, Alicen, Alycen
Short form(s)Ali, Alie, Alley, Alli, Allie, Ally, Aly, Alys

Alison is primarily a female given name in English-speaking countries. It was originally a medieval French nickname for Alis, an old form of Alice[1][2] derived with the suffix -on or -son sometimes used in the former French nicknames such as Jeanson ("little Jean") or Pierson ("little Pierre"). The Middle English form was Alisoun.

The variant spelling Allison is the most common form in the United States.[2] Other variations include Alisson, Allisson, Allyson, Allysson, Alyson, Alysson, Alicen and Alycen, with nicknames Allie, Alley, Alie, Ali, Ally, Aly, Al, Aley and Alli.

In Lusophone countries like Brazil and Portugal, Alison and variant forms are also used as masculine given names.

Allison also has separate, disputed roots as a family name.[3][4]

Alison, variant form Alizon, is also a French surname.[1]


The name is first recorded in Scotland in the 12th century. It was popular until the early 19th century and, spelled Allison, was the 45th most common name given to baby girls in the United States in 2005 (Allyson was #253; Alison, #259; Alyson, #468; Allie, #256; Ally, #656; and Alice, #414).[5] In 1990 in the United States, Allison was the 228th most popular name for women of all ages; Alison was #347, Allyson, #775; Alyson, #981; Allie, #764; Ali, #2434; and Alice, #51.[6] Alison in any spelling did not enter the top 100 baby names in 2005 in England and Wales.[7]

Allison last entered the top 1000 baby names for males in the United States in 1946, when it ranked #968. In the 1910s it ranked from 667 to 981 with an average of #835, and in the first decade of the 20th century, it ranked as high as #927.[8]

People named Alison[edit]




See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Albert Dauzat, Noms et prénoms de France, Librairie Larousse 1980, édition revue et commentée par Marie-Thérèse Morlet. p. 6a.
  2. ^ a b Katie Martin-Doyle, The Treasury of Baby Names, Worth Press, Cambridge 2005. ISBN 978-1903025116.
  3. ^ "Allison – Name Meaning and Origin". Archived from the original on 2011-06-12.
  4. ^ "Surname Database: Allison Last Name Origin". Retrieved 2013-06-02.
  5. ^ Popular Names by Birth Year: Dec 2007
  6. ^ "Most Common Female Names in the U.S."
  7. ^ "Most Popular Names for Births in England and Wales 2005".
  8. ^ Campbell, Mike (2012). "Popularity for ALLISON in the United States, percent Used, Male". Behind the Name: the etymology and history of first names. Retrieved 31 August 2013.

External links[edit]