Basil (name)
The name Basil , has origins from the male Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

 name Vassilios
Vassileios or Vassilis, also transliterated Vassilios or Vasilis , is a Greek given name, the origin of Basil. In medieval/Byzantine context, it is also transliterated as Basileios. It is directly descended from the word "Kingdom",...

  which first appeared during the Hellenistic period. It is derived from "basileus
Basileus is a Greek term and title that has signified various types of monarchs in history. It is perhaps best known in English as a title used by the Byzantine Emperors, but also has a longer history of use for persons of authority and sovereigns in ancient Greece, as well as for the kings of...

" a Greek word of pre-Hellenic origin meaning "king", from which words such as basilica
The Latin word basilica , was originally used to describe a Roman public building, usually located in the forum of a Roman town. Public basilicas began to appear in Hellenistic cities in the 2nd century BC.The term was also applied to buildings used for religious purposes...

 and basilisk
In European bestiaries and legends, a basilisk is a legendary reptile reputed to be king of serpents and said to have the power to cause death with a single glance...

 (via Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

), as well as the eponymous herb
Basil, or Sweet Basil, is a common name for the culinary herb Ocimum basilicum , of the family Lamiaceae , sometimes known as Saint Joseph's Wort in some English-speaking countries....

 (via Old French
Old French
Old French was the Romance dialect continuum spoken in territories that span roughly the northern half of modern France and parts of modern Belgium and Switzerland from the 9th century to the 14th century...

) derive, and the name of the Italian region Basilicata
Basilicata , also known as Lucania, is a region in the south of Italy, bordering on Campania to the west, Apulia to the north and east, and Calabria to the south, having one short southwestern coastline on the Tyrrhenian Sea between Campania in the northwest and Calabria in the southwest, and a...

, which had been long under the rule of the Byzantine
Byzantine usually refers to the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages.Byzantine may also refer to:* A citizen of the Byzantine Empire, or native Greek during the Middle Ages...

 Emperor (also called basileus).

It was brought to England by the Crusaders, having been common in the eastern Mediterranean. It is more often used in Britain and Europe than in the US and is also the name of a common herb. In Arabic, the name means "brave". Different derived names in different languages include:
Basile in French; Basilius in German; Basilio in Italian, Galician and Spanish, Basileo in Galician, Vasile in Romanian and Vasil in Bulgarian.

Basil has many variant forms: Basel, Basile, Basilic, Basilides, Basileios, Basileo, Basilie, Basilio, Basilius, Bazeel, Bazeelius, Bazil, Bazyli, Breasal, Pasi, Vasil, Vasyl, Vasile
Vasile (name)
The male name Vasile is of Greek origin and means "King".Vasile is a male Romanian given name or a surname. It is equivalent to the English name Basil.-As a first name:*Vasile Alecsandri, poet*Vasile Blaga, politician*Vasile Buhăescu, soccer player...

, Vaseleos, Vasileos, Vasilije, Vasilios, Vasilios, Vasilius,
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