The name William is primarily a male name of English origin that means With Gilded Helmet.From the Germanic/Belgic "Guild-Helm" meaning "harnessed with a gilded helmet."The name William has never really gone out of style, remaining one of the most popular given names for boys in the last 100 years. The name is an English variation of the German name Wilhelm. Common nicknames for the name William include Will, Willie, Bill, Billy, and Liam. William has been historically abbreviated as Wm.