Courtney was originally an English surname which either came from the French place name Courtenay (derived from Latin curtinus meaning "short"), or else from the nickname court-nez which means "short-nose." As a boys' name it has been in use since the 17th century. As a girls' name, it was probably first used in the book Chocolates for Breakfast by Pamela Moore, in which the female protagonist is named Courtney Farrell. Although this book was published in 1956, Courtney didn't become popular for girls until the 1970s in the USA.
See Also: Courtney (boy)

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