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Gender: Feminine
: Italian
Paola is the feminine form of Paolo, the Italian form of a Latin name, Paulus. Originally it meant “Small,” or “Humble.”

Paola is a name developed in Italy in the Middle Ages. It comes from the Latin name Paula and was either given in honor of St. Paula or St. Paul. Paola was not unknown in medieval Italy, but neither was it that common.

Paola may have been introduced to the United States by Italian immigrants of the early 20th century. However, in most cases it was probably Anglicized to Paula.

In the late 20th century, the Italian name Paola has also become popular in many Spanish-speaking nations, including Chile, Argentina, and Spain. It also became quite popular in the United States.

Please see Paula for more information.

Pronunciation: pah-oh-lah.

Masculine: Paolo, Paul.

Famous Bearers:
Pauline Bonaparte (Maria Paola Buonaparte) (1780-1825)
Sister of Napoleon.

Paola de Calabria (1937-)
Wife to Albert II, King of the Belgians.

Singers and Entertainers:
Andrea Paola Krum (1970-)
Argentine actress and singer
Paola Andrea Rey (1979-)
Colombia actress

Sports Stars:
Paola Pezzo (1969-)
Italian mountain biker.
Paola Vukojicic (1974-)
Argentine hockey player.
Paola Suárez (1976-)
Argentine tennis player.

Percentage from the 1990 U.S. Census:
0.003 % named Paola

Popularity of Paola
Popularity (for newborns):
In the United States...
1880-1982: N/A
1983: 932nd most popular.
1984: 926th most popular.
1985: 901st most popular.
1986: 899th most popular.
1987: 891st most popular.
1988: 874th most popular.
1989: 763rd most popular.
1990: 464th most popular.
1991: 476th most popular.
1992: 340th most popular.
1993: 373rd most popular.
1994: 246th most popular.
1995: 203rd most popular.
1996: 235th most popular.
1997: 252nd most popular.
1998: 203rd most popular.
1999: 182nd most popular.
2000: 188th most popular.
2001: 194th most popular.
2002: 198th most popular.
2003: 230th most popular.
2004: 340th most popular.

In Catalonia (Spain)...
2004: 98th most popular.

In Chile...
1990: 35th most popular.
1991: 37th most popular.
1992: 43rd most popular.
1992: 42nd most popular.
1994: 42nd most popular.
1995: 39th most popular.
1996: 46th most popular.
1997: 46th most popular.
1998: 50th most popular.
1999-2003: N/A
2004: 98th most popular.

In Spain...
2004: 71st most popular.
2003: 62nd most popular.
2004: 66th most popular.

Selected Sources:
A Dictionary of First Names, Hanks and Hodges, 1990

The Social Security Administration Actuarial Note 139 ( - For popularity stats 1880-Present
The 1880 U.S. Census- For popularity stats 1850-1880, and other information (it is available on-line at
Instituto Nacional de Estadistica ( - for Spanish stats.
Statistical Institute of Catalonia ( - for Catalonian stats.
Servicio de Registro Civil e Indentificación ( for Chilean stats.

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