This lovely Greek name means "laurel" which is a flower. Laurels are often used in circular wreaths, one of which was worn on top of the head of Apollo in Greek mythology. According to the legend, a beautiful female nymph named Daphne gained the unwanted attention of Apollo and was turned into a laurel tree by her father in order to escape Apollo's advances. Apollo is associated with laurels because of his desire for Daphne.
As a baby name, Daphne has been in use in the US since 1886. While it has never been popular, it had one large spike in usage in 1962. In that year, 1,131 girls were given the name which ranked it at #266.
Usage declined through the 1980s but suddenly climbed again in 2001. As of 2013, Daphne is on the rise with 770 births and a ranking of #397. This is the best the name has done since the 1970s.
Beyond the mythology mentioned above, the name Daphne has been well-used in various pop-culture works and worn by many famous people. Despite this, it has managed to remain mostly under the mainstream naming radar which makes Daphne a familiar but underused name. It would be a refreshing choice in the US today.
What do you think of Daphne? If you are considering it, here are a few sibling and middle name ideas: