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Of Hebrew origin.

Greek form of Hebrew Channah, meaning grace, favor.

In Old Testament translation of the name was spelled Hannah instead of Anna.

Anna was the mother of the Virgin Mary and so the name was very popular in the Byzantine Empire.

In the Middle Ages it became common among Western Christians.

In the English speaking countries it was used in the form of Ann and Anne. Anna was also popular by the 18th century.

Numerous saints and queens bear the name.

Famous fictional Anna is Leo Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina”.

Alternative forms of the name are: Anne, Ann, Anya, Annie, Anika, Anke, Annushka, Anita, Anabel, Anouk, Aneta, Annabella, Aina, Hannah, Anais, Anelie, Annamaria, Luanna, Anissa, Annabelle, Annelise, Nancy, Nanna.

Famous bearers are Anna Magnani, Anna Pavlova, Anna Paquin, Anna Kournikova, Anna Kendrick, Anna Wintour, Anna Friel, Anna Torv, Anna Deavere Smith, Anna Sui.

Anna is a popular name in Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Norway, Denmark, Netherlands, Switzerland, Greece, Italy, Iceland, Belgium, Poland, Scotland.