Dictionary of Medieval Names
from European Sources

Ursa f. Latin ursa '(she-)bear'.

The diminutive form of the name, Ursula, was always more common than the root form, due to the popularity of the legend of St. Ursula and the 10,000 virgins. In England, the name was not much used before the 16th C.

Belgium
Dutch
1597x1598 Urssele BoonenGes p. 381, Ursula ibid. p. 373, Ursule ibid. p. 384
England
Latin
1551 Ursula (nom) StMartF p. 57
Early Modern English
1541 Vrsula StNick-Sf p. 1; 1554 Ursula BarnstapleBap p. 8; 1560 Ursula BEmar-vol1 p. 6; 1561 Ursula BarnstapleBap p. 11, Ursulay ibid. p. 11; 1563 Urseley BEmar-vol2 p. 29; 1570 Ursley RegBisham p. 3, Ursula BUmar-vol2 p. 116; 1572 Ursula StAnthonlin p. 22; 1575 Urslaw BUmar-vol9 p. 148, Ursula StAnthonlin p. 24, Vrseley OrpingtonKe p. 4; 1578 Ursula BEmar-vol2 p. 69; 1579 Vrselay OrpingtonKe p. 5; 1583 Ursula BEmar-vol1 p. 11; 1583/4 Ursula ibid. p. 11; 1585 Ursula bruton-vol1 p. 8; 1586 Ursle BUmar-vol1 p. 26, Ursula BUmar-vol2 p. 117; 1587 Ursly CAmar-vol1 p. 4, Urslye ibid. p. 4; 1589 Ursula BEmar-vol2 p. 31, bruton-vol1 p. 9; 1590 Urselie HAmar-vol9 p. 140, Ursula bruton-vol1 p. 50; 1594 Ursula ibid. p. 10; 1595 Urselay BUmar-vol9 p. 9, Ursula COmar-vol2 p. 72; 1599 Ursula WAmar-1 p. 109, bruton-vol1 p. 57
France
Middle French
1565 Ursine RegPCC-1 p. 157; 1566 Ursine ibid. p. 247; 1567 Ursine ibid. p. 339; 1571 Ursine ibid. p. 446
Germany
Early New High German
1497 Ursel Nurn1497 87, Ursell ibid. 805, Ursula ibid. 140
Italy
Latin
882 Orsa (nom) skinner p. 113
1522x1532 Ursulina (nom) DSF p. 56, 8
Latvia
Middle Low German
1523 Ursula Arbusow p. 99
Spain
Latin
1491 Ursola (nom) carbonell-I p. 55, Ursolæ (gen) ibid. p. 55
Catalan
1510 Ursola valencia1510 3162, Ursula ibid. 3266
Spanish
1575 Ursula Catalogo-5.2 3804
Cite as: R. Le Get, J. Uckelman, S.L. Uckelman. "Ursa". In S.L. Uckelman, ed. The Dictionary of Medieval Names from European Sources, Edition 2017, no. 1. http://dmnes.org/2017/1/name/Ursa.