American Names · Modern names · Opinions


The name Terra is on my mind this Earth Day.  Terra is the Latin word for “earth,” though as a name it’s more commonly a variant of Tara.  It can also mean “country.”


Terra first appeared in SSA birth data in the early 1940s, but didn’t become popular until the early 70s.  She peaked in 1980, just three years after Tara did.  Terra only remained in the top 1000 until 1996, but a decent number still receive the name every year – indeed, 95 girls were named Terra in 2016 (Tara was given to 262).  Additionally, 22 boys were named Terran, which is sometimes used in sci-fi as another name for humans (the most recent examples I know of are Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 1 and “Star Trek: Discovery”).

Besides being an alternative to Tara, Terra could be treated as a modern nickname for Teresa.  You could also use Terra to honor a Terrence, a Terry, or even an Eartha!  It would also be a fun name for the child of someone who works with dirt, i.e, an archaeologist or farmer.

What do you think of Terra?

One thought on “Terra

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