Mateo Name Meaning

Lastest Updated January 23, 2024
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Would you like to know about Mateo name meaning, its origin, and its popularity over time? If yes, this post is for you!

Mateo is not an obvious choice for many parents. Considering the group of M-starting names alone, there’s no shortage of stellar choices, like Matthew, Michael, or Mason.

However, Mateo is still a stand-out given name. Here is a hint: this cool name is now even ahead of Michael in the popularity chart. So, are you curious about how popular it is already? Let’s get right to the business!

Mateo A Marvelous Spanish Name
Mateo is among the most common M names right now!

A Quick Glance At The Name Mateo

I’ve put all the must-know information about Mateo in this table if you want an overview of Mateo first!

Meaning “Gift of God”, “a gift from God”, and “devoted to God”. 
OriginSpanish, Latin, Croatian, and Greek.
Pronunciation/ma-tay-oh/
GenderMateo is a male variation of Matthew and comes from Spanish. The name has a long history of use as a male name. 
PopularityBelieve it or not, Mateo has outshined the original Matthew in recent years. It stood at 15th on the popularity chart in 2021, whereas Matthew only ranked 36th in the same year.
VariationsMaitias, Matvei, Mathéo, Mattathias, Matteus, Matthaeus, Mathias, Matthias, Matias, etc. 
NicknamesMat, Mo, Teo, Theo, Tias, Ty, Tato, Tay, Matt, Matti, Mays, Maz, etc. 
Similar NamesEmilio, Marciano, Mario, Massimo, etc. 
Sibling NamesFor Boys: Elias, Diego, Francesco, Marco, Sebastian, etc. 

For Girls: Adrianna, Anna, Cecilia, Sofia, Valentina, etc. 
Middle NamesAlan, Luke, Louis, Martin, Samuel, etc. 

History & Meaning Of The Name Mateo

Mateo is a Spanish name that means “a gift from God”. If the name sounds familiar, it might be because it derives from the Hebrew name “Matthew” and is pronounced fairly in the same way.

Matthew itself comes from the word “Mattiyahu”, which combines “mattan” for “gift” and “yah” for “God”. The name leaves a significant mark in the New Testament, borne by one of Jesus’s twelve disciples.

This religious reference makes it easy to see why Matthew has long been a popular choice. Mateo, on the other hand, is commonly heard in its homeland, Spanish, and other Spanish-speaking countries.

There’s also a belief that this male name is a Latinate or Croatian version of “Matthew” and carries the same meaning.

Another supposed etymology of Mateo is Greek; in this case, Mateo means “devoted to God”. However, Mateo seems to be the most popular when serving as a Spanish name.

Matthew has been in circulation since the Middle Ages in Northwest Europe. While the exact timing when Mateo was first used remains unknown, it’s believed to have been around for several centuries.

Is Mateo Exclusive For Boys?

Mateo has long served as a masculine title and an alternative to the shining star “Matthew”. It’s rare to come across a girl with this name, so it’s safe to say that the name is entirely on the masculine side.

For a female equivalent, consider Matea, which comes from Latin and means the same things as Mateo.

Mateo: A Rising Boy Name In The US

As mentioned, Mateo is a name with certain longevity to it. However, it’s surprising that it didn’t belong to the popularity chart before 1995.

That year, Mateo was still overlooked, however, at only the 997th spot. Parents seem to lean heavily towards Matthew, as it was already the 2nd choice for baby boys then.

Anyway, Mateo is a steady and fast climber on the popularity chart. It quickly rose to the top 100 most-used names in only two decades.

The year 2021 marks Mateo’s entrance to the top 20 choices, with 9112 baby boys born sharing the name. Specifically, with the 15th spot in that year, Mateo is even more popular than the original Matthew (at only 36th).

Numerous Variations Of The Name Mateo

The closest cousin of Mateo is the name Matteo, which has an extra “t” and comes from Italy. The two names are sometimes mistaken for each other. However, many other variations of Mateo might not look like it at all. Below are some of the most common ones:

  • Maitias (Celtic)
  • Matvei (Russian)
  • Mathéo (French)
  • Mattathias (Greek)
  • Matteus (Portuguese)
  • Matthaeus (German)
  • Mathias (Scandinavian)
  • Matthias (Greek, Welsh)
  • Matias (Hebrew, Portuguese, Spanish)

Nicknames And Similar Names For Mateo

If you think Mateo is already cute enough to function as a nickname itself, wait for a second and look at these sweet pet names! You will want to pick more than one to call your little Mateo at home!

  • Mat
  • Mo
  • Teo
  • Theo
  • Tias
  • Ty
  • Tato
  • Tay
  • Matt
  • Matti
  • Mays
  • Maz

Mateo is unique because only a few names have a similar vibe. If you’re having your eyes on this Spanish name, here are some other names that might look attractive to you, too.

NamesPronunciationMeaningOrigin
Emilio

/e-mee-lyo/

/ai-m-ee-l-ee-oh/

Eager, rival, strive, excelLatin
Marciano

/mar-ciano/

/m-ah-ch-ih-ah-n-oh/

Dedicated to Mars, little warriorLatin, Italian, French
Mario

/mahr-ee-oh/

/mari-o/

/meh-ree-oh/

Manly, MarsLatin, Spanish, Portuguese, Greek
Massimo

/maa-siy-mow/

/mas-si-mo/

Greatest, biggestItalian

Sibling Names For Mateo Without Sounding Too Matchy!

If you plan to have more than one child, why not take a look at these matching sibling names for Mateo?

Sibling Name Mateo
Try pairing these sibling name ideas with Mateo to decide if they are the right fit!

For Sons

Once you’ve selected a great name for your first boy, you can use it as a starting point for the name of the next one. If Mateo is your choice, here are some monikers that sound like a team with it.

Elias: Elias holds meaning as reverent as Mateo’s. This male name is a Greek, Latin version of “Elijah”, which can be interpreted as “the Lord is my God” or “Jehovah is God”.

Despite being a variant, Elias has its own character. Plus, did you know that it is the middle name of the American animator and film producer Walt Disney?

Diego: If you love the popular “James”, but want something to match Mateo, then Diego is the way to go. Of Spanish origin, this name is the equivalent of James and means “supplanter”.

Francesco: As an Italian variation of “Francis”, this long name means “free man” or “Frenchman”. While Francesco is rarely heard in the US, it’s a popular male title in Italy. The name has been given to many Italian composers, writers, philosophers, and painters.

Marco: If you love something that is not in heavy use but sounds decidedly masculine, Marco is a nice option. Standing at 398th in 2021, Marco is not a name you frequently hear in the playground.

However, the name is neither rare for people to misspell it. This masculine name translates to “warlike” and is a Spanish/Italian manifestation of “Mark”.

Sebastian: Sebastian is a classic Latin name that means “venerable” or “revered”. It originates from the Latin word “Sebastianus”. Fans of Little Mermaid will be instantly reminded of the Jamaican-accented crab of the same name.

Meanwhile, William Shakespeare’s play Twelfth Night also features Sebastian as the main character (1). Bast, Seb, and Bastian are various ways to abbreviate this name for spunky nicknames at home.

For Daughters

If you need some suggestions for a sister of Mateo, these a-ending seems to be the apt choices.

Adrianna: Adrianna might sound less familiar than “Adrian” but they carry the same meanings. You can interpret Adrianna as the “man from Adria” or briefly “from Hadria”. Yet, this feminine name will match Mateo well, as Hadria is an ancient city in northern Italy.

Anna: Anna goes as a Latin version of the Hebrew “Ḥannāh” or ‎“Chanah”, with the translation of “grace” and “favor”. Although slightly less popular than Emma or Ava, Anna is still a minimalist yet elegant and worth more spotlight in the US.

Cecilia: Cecilia not only sounds melodious but it is also tied to the martyred Saint Cecilia, the patron Saint of music (2).

Despite its peculiar (and somewhat unfavorable) meaning, “blind”, this girl’s name has never slipped out of the top 500 in the SSA’s list. Cecilia has been well-loved since the Middle Ages, and many European royals share this name.

Sofia: If you’ve thought about Sophia, you might find this one a more reasonable choice.

Just one letter away from Sophia, this Greek name similarly means “wisdom”. However, Sofia is considered more stylish in Italy and many Spanish-speaking countries.

Valentina: This V-starting name sounds sexy and delicate. Nevertheless, it holds quite a powerful connotation – “strong” and “healthy”.

If these meanings present your wish for your girl, go with Valentina. Its 2021’s ranking on the popularity chart is 69th, making it a fairly common name in the playground, too.

Great Middle Names For Mateo

Like any kid, a full name is a long-life gift to your little Mateo. If you decide to add a middle name, you know you’ll need to put as much thought into it as the given name.

Great Middle Names For Mateo
You may want to put serious thoughts into choosing Mateo’s middle name.

Alan: Alan is a name that has it all. It means “noble”, “handsome”, and “cheerful” if that’s what you envision your baby to become.

Another common Irish definition of Alan is “little rock”, which helps Alan qualify as a strong boy name, too. “Precious” is also a sweet German translation of this masculine name.

Luke: For many parents, the arrival of a newborn is synonymous with a refreshing change or new beginning.

If your baby comes during the trying times of your family, and things start to change for the better, Luke, meaning “giving light”, will help reflect that.

Louis: This charming royal name was hugely popular during the first half of the 1900s. While it’s now stepped back a bit, it’s still the choice of many high-profile parents. For example, Kate and William named their third child Louis Arthur Charles.

Sandra Bullock and Bill Pullman are also among modern parents who appreciate the beauty of this classic name. Louis comes from French and German and means “renowned warrior” or “famous warrior”.

Martin: While Martin is usually used as a last name in Scotland, it’s more common as a given name in other countries. Martin is a Latin name that translates to “God of war” and “dedicated to Mars”.

Martin Luther King Jr. is perhaps the best-known namesake. He is an American minister, activist, and the leading force of the civil right movements.

Samuel: Is the baby that’s what you always whisper in every prayer? If yes, then Samuel, meaning “God has heard”, will fit your newborn nicely.

Samuel is a Hebrew name that dates back to Old Testament times. Choosing this name means that your boy will share it with a wise prophet revered by Christians, Jews, and Muslims.

Mateo & Its Use In Fiction Works

While there’s a long list of fictional Matthews you can find on TV shows, novels, or video games, you’ll less frequently stumble on characters named Mateo. Here are a few examples of Mateos in the fictional world:

  • Mateo Liwanag: a sales associate on the TV show Superstore.
  • Mateo: the character in the documentary about Matthew Stoneman, a gringo mariachi who chases stardom.
  • Mateo Solano Villanueva: a teenage boy in the American TV drama Jane the Virgin, portrayed by Elias Janssen.
  • Mateo Santos: a fictional character on the soap opera All My Children.

Famous Mateos That You Might’ve Heard Of

Are you curious about famous personalities who share this Spanish name? There have been numerous well-known Mateos over the years, some of whom include:

  • Mateo Arias (born 1995): an American actor best known for his role as Jerry on the Disney series Kickin’ It.
  • Mateo Bertoša (born 1988): Croatian football player.
  • Mateo Camargo (born 1977): Colombian songwriter and record producer.
  • Mateo Flores (1922-2011): Born Doroteo Guamuch Flores, a Guatemalan long-distance runner who won the Boston Marathon in 1952.
  • Mateo González Manrique (unspecified): Spanish soldier and former governor of West Florida (in office from 1813 to 1815).
  • Mateo Gucci (1500–1550): Polish-Italian Renaissance sculptor and architect.
  • Mateo Kovačić (born 1994): Croatian professional soccer player
  • Mateo Musacchio (born 1990): Argentine professional soccer player.

FAQs

Parents who love Mateo also have these common concerns about the name. If the section above is still not convincing enough for you to go for Mateo, let’s see if some of these facts can change your mind!

Is Mateo an attractive name?

Yes, it is. Mateo sounds decidedly strong and masculine. It boasts a beautiful meaning, too – “the gift from God”. If you believe your baby is a blessing gift from the above, Mateo is a name worth considering.

Many Mexican parents will agree with me about Mateo’s appeal. The name has been a long-time favorite in Mexico for a while.

Is the name Mateo Italian or Spanish?

It’s easy to mix up the origins of Mateo and Matteo, as they are only a letter “t” away from each other. Mateo is a Spanish name, whereas Matteo comes from Italy.

The latter, in particular, can also function as a patronymic surname, as in de Matteo, DeMatteo, or De Matteo. All means “descendant of Matteo”.

Is Mateo in the Bible?

Mateo does have an indirect connection with the Bible. It’s an Italian version of “Matthew”, which is a name that appears seven times in biblical texts.

Matthew the Apostle was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ. The first book of the New Testament was also named after this figure – the Gospel of Matthew.

What is the girl version of Mateo?

Mattea is normally considered Mateo’s female counterpart, who comes from Italy. This name is also commonly heard in France, Canada, and the US.

What is a boy's name that sounds in rhythm with Mateo?

There are not many names that rhyme with Mateo. However, it can be interesting to choose a sibling for Mateo. In this case, Andrew and Galileo seem to be the brightest candidates.

Mateo – An Offshoot That Outshines The Original!

Mateo is a name with its own charm. It might sound less serious than the original Matthew, but it is still masculine enough. Is your little one a gift from God? Or do you want to honor your faith on one side and your Italian heritage on the other? Mateo will hit the right spot.

Thank you for spending your time reading this post about Mateo. Please comment to share your thoughts about this name and whether you go for it this time! Like and share this article so many soon-to-be parents like you can make a more informed choice about this Italian name.

References

  1. en.wikipedia.org. 2024. Sebastian (Twelfth Night)
  2. britannica.com. 2024. St. Cecilia, Roman martyr
Helen Doanna

Helen Doanna

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