Fiona is a feminine given name. It was invented and first used by the Scottish poet James Macpherson (1736–96), author of the Ossian poems which he claimed were translations from ancient Gaelic sources (sources which, when challenged, he never produced). The name was subsequently used as a pseudonym by William Sharp (1855–1905), who authored several romantic works under the name "Fiona Macleod". The name has since become popular in England, Scotland and Ireland. The name is considered to be a Latinised form of the Gaelic word fionn, meaning "white", "fair". The name Fiona is also sometimes used as an Anglicisation of the Irish-language name Fíona, although these names are otherwise unrelated (as Fíona is derived from an element meaning "vine"). There is also a modern tendency to equate the authentic Scottish Gaelic feminine name Fionnghal with Fiona. Fiona was the 49th most popular name for baby girls born in 2008 in Germany. Fiona was tied for third place in the ranking of most popular names for baby girls born in Liechtenstein in 2008. The name was the 347th most popular name for girls born in the United States in 2008, where it has ranked among the top 1,000 most popular names for girls since 1990 and among the top 500 since 1999.
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