Of French origin, Aubrey results from the phonetical mutation of Alberic, which is a Germanic given name, meaning "Fair Ruler of the Little People." The name Alberich is the German variant. The Anglo-Saxons used before the Norman conquest the corresponding variant Ælf-rīc (see Ælfric).
A female form is recorded as Aubrée and does not share the same etymology. It is derived from the Germanic Albereda or Alberada. It can be found in certain genealogies of the noble Norman families (See f. e. Aubrey of Buonalbergo).
The name is traditionally male, but is more commonly used as a feminine name in the United States. It was the 41st most popular name given to girls born in the United States in 2009. It was last ranked among the top 1,000 most common names for boys in the United States in 2002. It was the 479th most common name for all males in the United States in the 1990 census.
By Dean Hanley
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