Mia is a shortened version of the name Maria, which is derived from the Hebrew name Miryam. Mia has also been used as an abbreviated version of the Israeli girl’s name Michal. Mia has roots in Latin languages, like Spanish and Italian, where it means “mine.”
Mia is pronounced “mee-ah” and is most commonly spelled Mia, though Mya and Miah are spelling variations. This short and sweet name doesn’t lend itself well to many nicknames, but some options include Mimi and Mi.
Mia has become wildly popular as a stand-alone name, but it is also often used as a shortened version or nickname for many other popular girl names, like Amelia, Emilia, Emily, and Amalia. It ‘s a traditionally feminine name, typically used for girls. If you prefer a more gender-neutral name, consider Mio, which is used as a girl’s name in Japan and a boy ‘s name in other countries.
Originally a spunky nickname for the Biblical name Maria, Mia didn’t emerge as a name in its own right in the United States until the 1960s. In the 1990s and 2000s, Mia surpassed Maria in popularity, and since then Mia ‘s been unstoppable. It has consistently ranked in the top ten baby names in the U.S. since 2009. In 2020, Mia was the 8th most popular girl name in the United States, according to data compiled by the Social Security Administration.
Mia’s emergence in the United States coincided with the rise in fame of Mia Farrow, the American actress and activist. (Interestingly, her given name is Maria!) Farrow starred in the soap opera Peyton Place, as well as films including Rosemary ‘s Baby and Hannah and Her Sisters. More recently, the soccer player and Olympic gold medalist Mia Hamm (birth name: Mariel) contributed to this name’s popularity.
Mia is one of several popular baby names for girls that start with M, such as McKenzie, Mila, and Maya. BabyCenter parents are fans of the name, and it ‘s been in the top ten for girls since 2010. (BabyCenter’s ranking is based on data from hundreds of thousands of parents who share their baby ‘s name with us.)
Mia is a fun and chic name that offers a bit of sass. This name has exploded in popularity over the past 20 years and isn’t showing signs of slowing down anytime soon.