Where Does The Name Callum Come From?


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Will Martin answered
Originally spelt Calum, this is a Scottish Gaelic name. It isn't as ancient as many Celtic names, being actually a Christian name with a Latin origin. It comes from the late Latin Columba, or "dove." Columba was quite popular with early Christians, because of the Christian association with doves as gentle, spiritual and peaceful creatures (even today, the dove is a symbol of peace.)

Although Callum is now more of a Scottish name, the St Columba who made the name popular was Irish. In the 6th century he left his Irish monastery to go to Scotland and convert the inhabitants to Christianity. He succeeded in this, founding a monastery on the island of Iona; Columba's influence is probably the reason why the Scottish form of his name became widespread.

There is a feminine form, Columbina, rarely used; better known is Columbine (because of the harlequinade), although this may have more associations with the flower than the dove.

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