Curtis Name Meaning | Origin, History & Popularity

The name Curtis is of English origin and means “courteous” or “polite”. It is derived from the Old French word “curteis”, which means “courtly” or “refined”. The name has been in use since the Middle Ages and has been associated with the noble virtues of chivalry and courtesy.

Popularity of the Name Curtis

Curtis has been a popular name for boys in the United States since the late 19th century. According to the Social Security Administration, it ranked as the 391st most popular name for boys in 2020. Its popularity peaked in the 1950s and 1960s, when it was a top 100 name. However, it has gradually declined in popularity over the years.

History and Cultural Significance of the Name Curtis

The name Curtis has a long history and has been used by many notable figures throughout the centuries. In medieval England, it was a common name among the nobility and was associated with the virtues of chivalry and courtliness. During the Renaissance, the name became popular in Europe and was associated with the ideas of humanism and classical learning.

In America, the name Curtis has been associated with the military and sports. It has been the name of several notable military figures, including General Curtis LeMay, who was the commander of the Strategic Air Command during the Cold War, and Admiral Curtis Howard, who was a Navy pilot and hero of the Pacific Theater in World War II. It has also been the name of several successful athletes, such as Curtis Martin, a former NFL running back, and Curtis Granderson, a former MLB outfielder.

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Famous People with the Name Curtis

Curtis is a name that has been associated with many famous people throughout history. Some of the most notable include:

  1. Curtis Mayfield – an American singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was known for his socially conscious lyrics and soulful sound.
  2. Curtis Jackson (aka 50 Cent) – an American rapper, actor, and entrepreneur who rose to fame in the early 2000s.
  3. Curtis Armstrong – an American actor who is best known for his role as Booger in the “Revenge of the Nerds” film series.
  4. Curtis Stone – an Australian celebrity chef and television personality who has hosted several cooking shows, including “Top Chef Masters” and “My Kitchen Rules”.
  5. Curtis Brown – an American football player who played for the Buffalo Bills and the San Diego Chargers in the NFL.


In conclusion, the name Curtis is a classic and timeless name that has been used for centuries. It has a rich history and cultural significance and has been associated with many notable figures throughout the years. While its popularity may have declined over time, it remains a popular choice for parents who are looking for a name that is traditional and dignified. If you are considering naming your child Curtis, you can be confident that you are choosing a name with a long and proud history.