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Latin Valerius, name of a patrician Roman gens, from valere (to be healthy, strong).

Proper noun[edit]


  1. A male given name of mostly historical use in English.
    • 1920 John Galsworthy, The Forsyte Saga: In Chancery:I: Chapter 2:
      "Here you are!" said George, pointing with his cigar. "Cato - Publius Valerius by Virgil out of Lydia. That's what you want. Publius Valerius is Christian enough."
      Dartie, on arriving home, had informed Winifred. She had been charmed. It was so 'chic'. And Publius Valerius became the baby's name, though it afterwards transpired that they had got hold of the inferior Cato. In 1890, however, when little Publius was nearly ten, the word 'chic' went out of fashion, and sobriety came in; Winifred began to have doubts. They were confirmed by little Publius himself, who returned from his first term at school complaining that life was a burden to him - they called him Pubby. Winifred - a woman of real decision - promptly changed his school and his name to Val, the Publius being dropped even as an initial.

Related terms[edit]