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Names object

Table of contents
  1. Remarks
  2. Example

A collection of all the Name objects in the application or workbook.


Each Name object represents a defined name for a range of cells. Names can be either built-in names—such as Database, Print_Area, and Auto_Open—or custom names.

The RefersTo argument must be specified in A1-style notation, including dollar signs ($) where appropriate. For example, if cell A10 is selected on Sheet1 and you define a name by using the RefersTo argument "=sheet1!A1:B1", the new name actually refers to cells A10:B10 (because you specified a relative reference). To specify an absolute reference, use "=sheet1!$A$1:$B$1".


Use the Names property of the Workbook object to return the Names collection. The following example creates a list of all the names in the active workbook, plus the addresses that they refer to.

Set nms = ActiveWorkbook.Names 
Set wks = Worksheets(1) 
For r = 1 To nms.Count 
    wks.Cells(r, 2).Value = nms(r).Name 
    wks.Cells(r, 3).Value = nms(r).RefersToRange.Address 

Use the Add method to create a name and add it to the collection. The following example creates a new name that refers to cells A1:C20 on the worksheet named Sheet1.

Names.Add Name:="test", RefersTo:="=sheet1!$a$1:$c$20"

Use Names (index), where index is the name index number or defined name, to return a single Name object. The following example deletes the name mySortRange from the active workbook.


This example uses a named range as the formula for data validation. This example requires the validation data to be on Sheet 2 in the range A2:A100. This validation data is used to validate data entered on Sheet1 in the range D2:D10.

Sub Add_Data_Validation_From_Other_Worksheet()
    'The current Excel workbook and worksheet, a range to define the data to be validated, and the target range
    'to place the data in.
    Dim wbBook As Workbook
    Dim wsTarget As Worksheet
    Dim wsSource As Worksheet
    Dim rnTarget As Range
    Dim rnSource As Range
    'Initialize the Excel objects and delete any artifacts from the last time the macro was run.
    Set wbBook = ThisWorkbook
    With wbBook
        Set wsSource = .Worksheets("Sheet2")
        Set wsTarget = .Worksheets("Sheet1")
        On Error Resume Next
        On Error GoTo 0
    End With
    'On the source worksheet, create a range in column A of up to 98 cells long, and name it "Source".
    With wsSource
        .Range(.Range("A2"), .Range("A100").End(xlUp)).Name = "Source"
    End With
    'On the target worksheet, create a range 8 cells long in column D.
    Set rnTarget = wsTarget.Range("D2:D10")
    'Clear out any artifacts from previous macro runs, then set up the target range with the validation data.
    With rnTarget
        With .Validation
            .Add Type:=xlValidateList, _
                 AlertStyle:=xlValidAlertStop, _
    'Set up the Error dialog with the appropriate title and message
            .ErrorTitle = "Value Error"
            .ErrorMessage = "You can only choose from the list."
        End With
    End With

End Sub

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