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Shirley Prior in the US

  1. #2,115,234 Shirley Pendley
  2. #2,115,235 Shirley Petro
  3. #2,115,236 Shirley Phifer
  4. #2,115,237 Shirley Pond
  5. #2,115,238 Shirley Prior
  6. #2,115,239 Shirley Quinlan
  7. #2,115,240 Shirley Rembert
  8. #2,115,241 Shirley Riegel
  9. #2,115,242 Shirley Riordan
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Meaning & Origins

Transferred use of the surname, in origin a local name from any of the various places (in the West Midlands, Derbyshire, Hampshire, and Surrey) named in Old English from scīr ‘county, shire’ or scīr ‘bright’ + lēah ‘wood, clearing’. It was given by Charlotte Brontë to the heroine of her novel Shirley (1849). According to the novel, her parents had selected the name in prospect of a male child and used it regardless. Shirley had earlier been used as a boy's name (Charlotte Brontë refers to it as a ‘masculine cognomen’), but this literary influence fixed it firmly as a girl's name. It was strongly reinforced during the 1930s and 40s by the popularity of the child film star Shirley Temple (b. 1928).
84th in the U.S.
Southern English, Scottish, Dutch, and German: ultimately from Latin prior ‘superior’, used to denote a prior, a monastic official immediately subordinate to an abbot, hence a nickname for someone thought to resemble a prior or, more often, an occupational name for a servant of a prior.
5,015th in the U.S.

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