Originally a pet form of Robert, from the short form Rob + the diminutive suffix -in (of Old French origin), but now nearly always used as an independent name. In recent years it has been increasingly used as a girl's name, partly under the influence of the vocabulary word denoting the bird.
Dutch and North German: 1. metronymic from a female personal name, a form of the Germanic personal name Adelheid (see Leite). From this were derived Frenchified names such as Adelis, Alisa, Alis, and Alice, hence the surname. 2. metronymic from a short form of the female personal name Elisabeth.