Occasionally bestowed in modern times in honour of the French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte (1769–1821), who was born in Corsica into a family that was ultimately of Italian origin. Napoleone is a rare Italian given name, used in Abruzzo, Latium, Umbria, and Tuscany. It is probably of Germanic origin, perhaps connected with the name of the elvish Nibelungen ‘sons of the mist’ (compare modern German Nebel). It was later altered by association with Italian Napoli ‘Naples’ (Greek nea polis ‘new city’) and leone ‘lion’.
Anglicized form of the Greek personal name Platon, the name of two early Christian martyrs, and as such found as a surname in Poland and elsewhere. However, it is much better known as the name of the great Greek philosopher (c.429–c.347 BC), in whose honor it was adopted as an English, Dutch, German, and Danish humanistic name during the Reformation.