Fun fact: If baby number 4 had been a girl, his name was going to be Mae. Our reason for picking such a short and sweet baby name was because our third child, Elle, turned us on to simple, one-syllable names. We thought one of our favorite super short, three letter names was the way to go for a few reasons:
- For one, you can’t shorten it, which is great if you want to avoid having the world call your kid a shortened nickname that you don’t like.
- If you have a big family like ours, shorter names make it less cumbersome to list off everyone or write everyone’s name.
- Short names work best with our three-syllable last name.
Whatever your reason is for wanting a short and sweet baby name, there are more than you think to choose from! Here is a list of 65 three letter names with meaning for girls and boys.
Love looking up new names and meanings? Babynames.com is one of several sites I regularly use to keep up to date on name trends.
3 letter baby girl names
From the uber traditional Eve, Ann, and Lee to the super trendy Lux, Ava, and Mya, there are styles galore in these short names for girls.
Eve This simple Hebrew name means life.
Uma Exotic Uma is Sanskrit for nation, and is another name for the Hindu goddess Sakti.
Liz Typically a nickname for Elizabeth, a Hebrew name meaning pledged to God.
Ava This super trendy name is a Latin variation of Eve, also meaning life.
Isa An adorable nickname for Isabel, Isabella, or Isadore, Isa has multiple origins. Its Latin origin means pledged to God, while its German roots mean strong-willed.
Lee Lovely Lee is a traditional unisex name meaning meadow. It tends to get more use as a middle name for girls, but has enough substance to make a good first name too.
Ivy This nature name was famously chosen by Beyonce and Jay-Z’s daugther Blue Ivy and is a symbol of fidelity.
Mae An vintage name from the 1920s, Mae is an English name meaning pearl.
Lux Too-cool-for-school Lux is a name of Latin origin meaning light.
Gia Pretty Italian name Gia means God’s gift.
Kim Kim is most often used as a diminutive for Kimberly, an English place name.
Rue This simple, cute name has several meanings. It is a Greek botanical, English for regret, and French for street.
Joy I bet you can’t come up with a happier name! Joy is a sweet English virtue name.
Zoe Zoe is a popular Greek name meaning life.
Lia Italian variation of Leah, Lia has the somewhat-unpleasant meaning weary.
Paz Spanish for peace, Paz has interesting Hebrew variations Pazya and Pazit.
Mal A common nickname for Mallory or Malvina, you’ve no doubt heard this name if your child is a fan of Disney’s Descendants.
Ann Another one that is most often used as a middle name, simple English Ann means grace.
Luz Luz is a popular Spanish name meaning light.
Sun This one is both a nature name honoring the sun, and a name of Korean origin meaning goodness.
Pia Pia is both a nickname for the Italian moniker Piacenza, and a standalone name of Latin origin meaning from Mount Olympus.
Ana This Spanish version of Ann has a bit more flare and also means grace.
Jan A variation of John, this Dutch unisex name is pronounced “YAHN” in Dutch and “JAN” in English. It is also commonly used as a shortened form of Janice or Janet.
Amy Hugely popular in the 1970s, Amy is a French name meaning beloved.
Ida Possibly the cutest of all the old lady names, Ida is a German name meaning industrious.
Pam Sweet Pam from The Office lived up to her name, which means honey.
Meg A cute name with personality, Meg has English and Greek origins and means pearl.
Sky If you are looking for a gender neutral nature name, Sky is definitely going to be a frontrunner.
Nia Nia is a Welsh girls name short for Niamh, and it means bright.
Mya An alternate spelling for the popular name Maya, meaning water.
Ada This short but distinctive name comes from German roots and means noble.
Bea Bea is a name on its own or a short form for Beatrice, and it means blessed.
Ina Ina is an English feminine name of unknown meaning.
Fae Meaning fairy, Fae is a cute vintage name that can also be spelled Fay or Faye.
3 letter boy names
The ultra cool Kai, Ace, and Jet have one thing in common with the old-school Hal, Roy, and Ike: they’re all made up of only three letters!
Leo Handsome and cool Leo is a trending name of Latin origin that means lion.
Max Talk about a name with great meaning! English and German Max means greatest.
Jeb If you want to give your boy country flair, Jeb is a name your hear a lot in old country Westerns. It is a Biblical name meaning beloved friend.
Ben Every time we turn around there is another trending name that can be shortened to Ben. Why not just go with Ben itself? The timeless Hebrew name simply means “son of”.
Kai If you love uncommon, unique boy names you should take a closer look at Kai. This cool name is Hawaiian for ocean.
Hal This one can be a nickname for Henry or Harold, or a name on its own. It comes from German origin and means estate ruler.
Roy If you have red-headed genes, this might be the name for you. Roy is a Celtic name meaning red hair.
Ace Ace may be short, but it exudes big time confidence. Originating from Latin, it means unity.
Jax An ultra modern boy name choice, Jax is a recently invented name without particular meaning.
Sid Friendly, approachable Sid is a French name that pays homage to Saint Denis.
Luc Sleek, classy Luc is the French variation of Luke, which means from Lucania.
Cal A diminutive for Calvin, Cal is a Latin name meaning bald.
Reg Reg is a prestigious English name meaning counsel power.
Tim The Greek diminutive of Timothy, Tim means honoring God.
Lou Strong name Lou means renowned warrior.
Eli Straight from the Bible, Eli means uplifted.
Dan This Hebrew name means God is my judge.
Tye Hipster cool Tye is a modern invented name of American origin.
Zev This short name packs a fierce punch. Zev derives from Hebrew and means wolf.
Jet Jet is a male nature name as it is a type of mineral.
Ari Hebrew unisex name Ari means lion of God.
Guy Super masculine Guy is a French name meaning leader.
Sal Traditional diminutive of Salvatore, Sal means savior.
Dax Dax is a French place name.
Van Van is a Dutch name simply meaning of (as in “son of”).
Joe Popular guy-next-door name Joe means Jehovah provides.
Ike Quirky Ike comes from the name Isaac, meaning laughter.
Gus Gus is short for the Latin Augustus, which means great.
Ray A name on its own or short for Raymond, Ray is a traditional yet cool name meaning protector.
Tom Simple and traditional, Tom means twin.
Pax Part of the “x” name trend, Pax is Latin for peace.
Ian Ian is the Scottish version of John and it means God is gracious.
Sam Unisex Sam is an English name meaning told by God.
Teo Stemming from Mateo, or Matthew, Teo signifies gift of God.
Jay Jay is both a Latin nature name meaning jaybird and a modern Hindi name variation of Jaya.
Do you have a favorite three letter name? Or do you prefer longer names?
Share your thoughts with me in the comments!
You can find all my baby name posts in one place here: Baby Name Lists