National Elizabeth Day takes place on October 24. Elizabeth is a very popular girl’s name that has historically been associated with royalty, faith, devotion, and dedication. It is an anglicized version of the Hebrew word ‘Elisheva’ (‘el’ meaning ‘god’ and ‘shava’ meaning ‘oath’), which means “devotion to god” and is found in both the Old and New Testaments of the “Bible.” Admired for its timeless aura, the name Elizabeth has become synonymous with grace due to the many Elizabeths in history who have embodied the trait, such as Queen Elizabeth II and Elizabeth Taylor.
History of National Elizabeth Day
Elizabeth’s associations with piety stem from the prominence of key individuals in Biblical documents with the name. In the Old Testament or Hebrew “Bible,” its Hebrew variation of Elisheva was used as the name for the wife of Aaron, the elder brother of Moses. In the New Testament, Elizabeth is the name of the priest Zechariah’s wife and is also the mother of St. John the Baptist.
Elizabeth is a prominent name in Christianity and was highly embraced in the Middle Ages and the eras that followed. Elizabeth is the name of several saints and many European royals, thus contributing to its survival and consistent popularity. It shares a distinction with names such as Mary, Margaret, and Catherine for being timeless names that are associated with class, royalty, dignity, and grace.
Its popularity in many European cultures and former European colonies has spawned many variations and derivations that are also as widely used today. These include Elisabeth (French), Elsa (Swedish), Elisabeta (Romanian), Elisavet (Greek), Elizaveta (Russian), and Erzsebet (Hungarian).
Elizabeth is a classic name that holds a broad appeal that has survived the ages. Since the early 1900s, it has continuously ranked among the top 30 baby names in the United States. Its popularity momentarily fell in the 1940s before quickly rising again in the 1980s and remaining at the top ever since. Most notably throughout the 20th century, figures such as Queen Elizabeth II, Elizabeth Taylor, and Elizabeth Hurley have helped boost the name’s popularity, partly because these figures publicly embodied the traits that the name has become known for.
National Elizabeth Day timeline
Queen Elizabeth I ascends the throne, and reigns until 1603.
The suffragist movement gains momentum thanks to American activist Elizabeth Cady Stanton's organization of the nation's first Woman's Rights Convention.
Legendary American actress Elizabeth Taylor makes her debut at age 10 in the film “There’s One Born Every Minute.”
The popular American sitcom “Bewitched,” which stars Elizabeth Montgomery in the lead role, ends after eight seasons.
Queen Elizabeth II officially becomes the longest-reigning British monarch in history, surpassing the reign of Queen Victoria.
National Elizabeth Day FAQs
What are good nicknames for Elizabeth?
Elizabeth is such a prolific and versatile name that it has an incredible number of nicknames and variations. Lily, Beth, Betty, Eliza, Liz, Liza, Lisa, Libby, Bess, Tibby, Elsa, Lisbeth, Lizzie, Ellie, Ella, Bette, Lizzo, Ellie, Betsy, Lilibeth, and the list goes on.
What are the cultural equivalents of Elizabeth?
Like many other prominent names, Elizabeth has its own cultural variations. The most known of these include Isabella (Italian), Isobel (Scottish), Isabel (Spanish), and Elikapeka (Hawaiian).
Is Elizabeth a popular name today?
Elizabeth has been a consistently popular name throughout the ages, especially in the Western world. It is popular in Anglophone countries, as with its cultural variations and derivatives. As of 2020, it is the 16th most popular name in the U.S., 56th in England, 87th in Scotland, 63rd in Australia, and 89th in Ireland.
National Elizabeth Day Activities
Spend time with an Elizabeth
Celebrate National Elizabeth Day with an Elizabeth in your life. Whether they are a mother, daughter, granddaughter, grandmother, or friend, this is the day to show them how much they mean to you.
Watch an Elizabeth
Elizabeths have graced both television and the silver screens across the century and many of them have made their distinctive marks. Why not curl up and put on a film or series by Elizabeth, such as Elizabeth Taylor’s 1958 film “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” or Elizabeth Olsen’s 2020 series “Wandavision,” to mark the day?
Have a royal costume party
Elizabeth has been widely used as a royal name in Europe for centuries. A good way to celebrate National Elizabeth Day is to hold a costume party with your friends, dressed up in royal garb. From the medieval to the modern ages, there is no shortage of costumes to don and look like royalty.
5 Interesting Facts About Elizabeths
The royal privileges
Queen Elizabeth II is the only citizen of the United Kingdom who may drive without a license.
A chilling legacy
Hungarian countess Bathory Erzsebet (Elizabeth Bathory) is one of the most well-known serial killers in history, allegedly killing 650 girls between 1590 and 1610.
Elizabeth Taylor’s favorite film
"Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" from 1966 is Taylor's favorite movie and is also widely recognized as her best performance.
A book that launched a thousand travels
"Eat Pray Love," a 2006 book by American author Elizabeth Gilbert, reached number one 57 times during its 199 weeks on the “New York Times” Bestseller List.
A queen’s bold choice
Queen Elizabeth I is known as the “Virgin Queen,” due to her refusal to marry or bear children.
Why We Love National Elizabeth Day
It celebrates the Elizabeths in your life
An Elizabeth in your life or in your circle may have influenced your life. You might be raised by Elizabeth or were given a napkin by Elizabeth after you sneezed. Any gesture counts, and every gesture should be appreciated. This is the day to honor them.
It thanks all Elizabeths in history
We celebrate the Elizabeths of the past and present who have influenced history from queens to performers, saints to samaritans. The actions and creations of these Elizabeths have given us joy and happiness, and today we thank them on their special day.
Elizabeths exude traits that many admire
The name itself has become connected with the traits of grace, poise, beauty, piety, and loyalty. The world becomes a better place with more people embodying these traits, and many Elizabeths that we know already are.
National Elizabeth Day dates