Giving someone a good nickname is a great way to show affection. However, finding the right nickname could be challenging, which is why for the name, William, we have listed several cute, funny, and popular William nicknames.
William is one of the most popular English names of all time. William is so popular that, Bill a common nickname for William has become a popular name in itself.
It is amazing how the name William has stayed popular through the ages and even in modern times. In the year 2019, William was one of the most popular baby boy names in New Zealand. Similarly, Willaim is one of the most popular baby boy names in the United States.
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History and Meaning of William
The name “William” evolved from the original Old High German name “Wilhelm.” “Willeo means desire” and “helm means helmet.” Other representations of the Wil are “determination” and “will” while “helm” has been implied to mean protection. Although the spelling of the name differs across centuries, cultures, and languages, the most accepted meaning of William is “resolute protector.”
The Old High Norman French name was “Willaume,” before it was introduced to England after the Norman conquest of England in the year 1066. Anglo-Saxon Chronicles used “Willhelm.” Later the name took on the typical Old Norman form of “Willame.”
In England, the popularity of the name William was buoyed by William, the Conqueror, the first Norman descendant to become king of England. Since then the name has spread like wildfire and is one of the most popular English names of all time.
Dutch legend claims that the name was derived from the Germanic word “Gildhelm” which means “Golden helmet.” It became a title of bravery on the war front. This introduced the “G” variation of the name “William.”
The Irish and Americans also adopted the name, and it has since become a favorite all across the world. William is a classic name that has been borne by a significant number of royals in different parts of history and the world. Britain, Germany, Sicily, France, Dutch, and even Cameroon have all had Kings, Princes, and Nobles who have been called William.
Why Is Bill a nickname for William?
Centuries ago the English tended to use hypocorism, which means switching a letter for another in a name. The substitution of letters was because it was easier to call “hard consonants” than “soft ones.” So, the reason why Bill and Billy became a nickname for William was that in the middle ages, the English found the “B” sound easier to pronounce than the “W” sound.
Popular William Nicknames
Most popular nicknames come from shortened forms of the name. Here are some popular nicknames for the name William:
- Will.i.am: From the famous singer, William James Adams, Jr. Pronounced “Will I am”
- Gil: Short for Guillermo, the Spanish variant of William
- Memo: A popular Guillermo nickname.
Funny William Nicknames
Nicknames are more memorable when they generate laughter, mirth, and humor in both the bearer and hearer. Here are some funny William nicknames that will have you giggling and smiling.
- Big Willy
- Little Willy
- Silly Willy
- Yum Yum
- Wil Yam: Sounds as if a toddler is trying out the name for the first time.
- Willionaire: Ideal for a rich William
- Wilmo: Mimicking the cartoon character “Elmo” in Sesame Street.
- Wombat: The nickname Princess Diana called Prince William
- Wull: Scottish abbreviation of the name William
- Wullie: Scottish origins
Female William Nicknames
If you have a daughter and you were hoping to name your child William. Or, you want to continue the family tradition of naming a child William, but you got a girl. Don’t worry we got you covered. Below are female versions of your favorite name, and your girl will be proud to be called any.
- Willow – Will Smith, the famous actor, named his daughter “Willow.” A cute version of his first name.
Variants of William
The popularity of William cuts across several cultures and languages, which provides an opportunity to use any variant of William as a William nickname. Here are some variants of the name Willaim:
- Billem – Batak
- Cugilerme – Neapolitan
- Gllaome – Modern Norman
- Guglielmo – Italian
- Gilen or Guilen – Basque
- Guilielmus – Latin
- Guildhelm – Old Dutch
- Guim – Catalan
- Guillen – Aragonese
- Guillermo – Spanish
- Guilherme – Portuguese
- Guillerme – Galician
- Gugghiermu – Sicilian
- Gwilym – Welsh
- Gwilherm – Breton
- Uilleam – Scottish Gaelic
- Uiliam – Bulgarian
- Vilem – Czech
- Vilhjalmur – Icelandic
- Vilim – Croatian
- Vilmos – Hungarian
- Vilius – Lithuanian
- Viljam or Wiljam – Hebrew
- Viljams – Latvian
- Viljami – Finnish
- Vilyam – Turkish
- Weilian – Chinese
- Wiriamu – Japanese
Famous People Named William
Famous people are a popular source of nicknames. For example, a guy named William could be nicknamed Shakespeare. Here are some famous people named William.
- William Jefferson Clinton – Known as Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States of America (1993-2001).
- William Henry Gates – Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft Corporation.
- William Shakespeare – Famous poet and Playwright (1564-1616).
- William Henry Cosby Jr. – Bill Cosby, Comedian, actor, activist, and author.
- William Martin Joel – Billy Joel, American Pianist, singer-songwriter. He wrote “Piano Man” in 1973
- William Felton Russell – Bill Russel is a retired professional basketball player who played for Boston Celtic
- William Joseph Baldwin – Actor, producer, and writer. Brother of Alec, Stephen, and Daniel Baldwin. His movies include Flatliners, Silver, Fair Game, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, and Parenthood.
- William Clark – Explorer
- William Bob Thornton – Billy Bob Thornton, actor, filmmaker
- William Ray Cyrus – Billy Ray Cyrus, singer, songwriter, and actor. Miley Cyrus’ dad.
- William Franklin – Billy Graham, Christian evangelist and spiritual adviser to many American Presidents.
- William McKinley – The 25th President of the United States of America (1848-1901)
- William Howard Taft – The 27th President of the United States of America (1857-1930)
- William James Adams, Jr – Professionally known as will.i.am. Founding and leading member of The Black Eyed Peas.
The list of the famous William pet names goes on and on…. Because let’s face it, there is no limit to the number of nicknames that can be derived from the name “William.”
So, get creative and form yours in a way that suits you or the William you want to give a pet name.
Also, do not hesitate to share any good William nicknames that you might have come across in the past.