🔼The name Fortunatus: Summary
- Fortunate, Who Has Amassed Much
- From the Latin adjective fortunatus, from the verb fortuno, from the verb fero, cognate with the Greek φερω (phero), to bring or carry.
🔼The name Fortunatus in the Bible
The name Fortunatus occurs only once in the Bible. At the end of his first letter to the Corinthians, Paul remarks that he rejoices over the coming of Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus because they have supplied Paul with something what was lacking on the part of the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 16:17). What that was exactly isn't known.
Paul's fellow worker Clement, however, who became Pope Clement I, also wrote a letter to the Corinthians, and urged his audience to send him back his messengers together with Fortunatus (1 Clement 65:1). Since Fortunatus thus appears to have been a mail man, many suppose that it was he who delivered mail to and from Paul in Ephesus (1 Corinthians 7:1, 16:8). There is very little evidence for this.
🔼Etymology of the name Fortunatus
The name Fortunatus is identical to the off-the-shelf Latin adjective fortunatus, meaning prosperous, lucky, happy, fortunate. It comes from the verb fortuno, meaning to make prosperous or happy. This verb is cognate with the Greek verb φερω (phero) primarily meaning to bring, carry or convey.
The verb φερω (phero) primarily means to bring, carry, convey or guide, and is associated with willful action and often commercial activity. It's part of a long list of compound derivations and is cognate with the Latin verb fero.
The name Fortunatus literally means Who's Ship Has Come In and means Fortunate primarily in the sense of Who Has Amassed Much. Perhaps his reputation as a mail carrier was amplified by the origin of his name.