fem. proper name, Latinized form of Greek Agathē, fem. of agathos "good, fit; gentle, noble" (of persons, opposed to kakoi), which is of unknown origin. Never a popular name in U.S., and all but unused there since 1940. The Greek adjective grew to include notions of "wealthy, powerful," also "brave, good at fighting" (as qualities attributed to the chiefs) as well as "good" in a moral sense. Also, of things, "serviceable, useful," and, abstractly, "the good."
updated on September 15, 2022