Originally a variant of Adelaide , representing an Old French spelling of a reduced form of Germanic Adalheidis. Alice and Adelaide were already regarded as distinct names in English during the medieval period. Alice enjoyed a surge of popularity in the 19th century and periods of favour ever since. It was the name of the central character of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland ( 1865 ) and Through the Looking Glass ( 1872 ), who was based on his child friend Alice Liddell , daughter of the Dean of Christ Church, Oxford.
Dictionary of First Names © Patrick Hanks and Flavia Hodges 1990, 2003, 2006.