- Jane fEnglish: originally a feminine form of JOHN (SEE John), from the Old French form Je(h)anne. Since the 17th century it has proved the most common of the feminine forms of John, ahead of JOAN (SEE Joan) and JEAN (SEE Jean). It now also commonly occurs as the second element in combinations such as Sarah-Jane.It is not a royal name: the nearest it ever came was as the name of the tragic Lady Jane Grey (1537–54), who was unwillingly proclaimed queen in 1553, deposed nine days later, and executed the following year. Seventy years earlier, the name had come into prominence as that of Jane Shore, mistress of King Edward IV and subsequently of Thomas Grey, 1st Marquess of Dorset, Lady Jane's grandfather. Jane Shore's tribulations in 1483 at the hands of Richard III, Edward's brother and successor, became the subject of popular ballads and plays, which may well have increased the currency of the name in the 16th century. A 19th-century influence was its use as the name of the central character in Charlotte Brontë's novel Jane Eyre (1847). In the 20th century it has been used intermittently since the 1940s as the name of a cheerful and scantily clad beauty whose adventures are chronicled in a strip cartoon in the Daily Mirror.Pet forms: English: Janey, Janie, Jaynie.Cognates: Irish Gaelic: Síne, Siobhán. Scottish Gaelic: Sìne, Siubhan. Welsh: Siân. French: Jeanne. Spanish: Juana. Italian: Giovanna, Gianna. German: Johanna, Hanne, Hansine. Dutch: Johanna. Scandinavian: Johanna; Jensine (Danish, Norwegian); Jonna (Danish). Polish: Jana. Czech: Johana, Hana, Jana.
First names dictionary. 2012.