From German Names

Female Female Name

German Pronunciation

Listen to the German pronunciation of Loreley. The speaker is a native speaker of Standard German from Schleswig-Holstein / Northern Germany:

Origin and Meaning

New German name

Loreley is the name of a rock at the edge of the Rhine near Koblenz. In the 19th century, first Clemens Brentano and later Heinrich Heine wrote poems about a legend based on a romantic reinterpretation of its name as a female first name (due to its resemblance to the name Lore: The siren Loreley lives on the rock and unwittingly lures boatmen to their death by combing her long blonde hair and singing.)

The second part of the place name ley derives from a Celtic word meaning 'rock, cliff', the first part is of unknown origin and meaning. Theories include

1) Middle High German luren = 'to lure, to lie in wait'

2) Middle High German lorren, lurren = 'to cry, to shout'

3) Rhine dialect lureln = 'to murmur'

Detailed information about the origin and meaning of Loreley can be found on our sister site www.nordicnames.de.