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For other uses, see Priscilla (disambiguation).
Gender Female
Word/name Roman
Meaning 'venerable , ancient ,classical ,primordial [1]

Priscilla is an English female given name adopted from the Roman Priscilla, derived from the Latin priscus (old).[1] One suggestion is that it is intended to bestow long life on the bearer.[citation needed]

It appears in the New Testament of the Christian Bible variously as Priscilla and Prisca, a female leader in the early Church.[2][3] The name appears in English literature in Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene (1596) and was adopted as an English name by the Puritans in the 17th century. The use of the name began to decline during the 1960s, possibly because of an association with the slang term prissy, in the sense of meaning prim or prudish.[4]

Diminutive forms of the name include Lily, Cilla, Pris, Prissy, Prisk, Pru/Prue and Scilla.

Priscilla may refer to:

Prisca may refer to:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Harper, Douglas (November 2001). "Priscilla". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved 2006-08-10. 
  2. ^ Alexander, Joseph Addison (1857). The Acts of the Apostles explained, volume II. London: Nisbet. 
  3. ^ Lee, Frank Theodosius (1913). The New Testament Period and Its Leaders. Sherman, French & Company. p. 323. A large share of this work evidently fell to Priscilla. That she possessed abilities of a high order would seem to be inferred from the fact that her name is always mentioned along with her husband's — in a number of instances is mentioned first. 
  4. ^ Room, Adrian (2002). Cassell's Dictionary of First Names. Sterling Publishing Company, Inc. ISBN 0-304-36226-3.