List Of Bible Names And Meanings

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AARON אַהֲרֹן, Ααρων m English, Jewish, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name אַהֲרֹן (‘Aharon) which is most likely of unknown Egyptian origin. Other theories claim a Hebrew derivation, and suggest meanings such as “high mountain” or “exalted”. In the Old Testament this name is borne by the older brother of Moses. He acted as a spokesman for his brother when they appealed to the pharaoh to release the Israelites from slavery. Aaron’s rod produced miracles and plagues to intimidate the pharaoh. After the departure from Egypt and arrival at Mount Sinai, God installed Aaron as the first high priest of the Israelites and promised that his descendants would form the priesthood…. [more]
ABADDON אֲבַדּוֹן m Biblical
Means “ruin, destruction” in Hebrew. In Revelation in the New Testament this is another name of the angel of the abyss.
ABEDNEGO עֲבֵד־נְגוֹ m Biblical
Means “servant of Nebo” in Akkadian, Nebo being the Babylonian god of wisdom. In the Old Testament Abednego is the Babylonian name given to Azariah, one of the three men cast into a blazing furnace but saved from harm by God, as told in the Book of Daniel.
ABEL הֶבֶל, הָבֶל, Αβελ m English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name הֶבֶל (Hevel) or הָבֶל (Havel) which meant “breath”. In the Old Testament he is the second son of Adam and Eve, murdered out of envy by his brother Cain. In England, this name came into use during the Middle Ages, and it was common during the Puritan era.
ABIAH אֲבִיָה m & f Biblical
Variant of ABIJAH which also appears in the English Bible.
ABIDAN אֲבִידָן, Αβιδαν m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “my father is judge” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is a Benjamite prince.
ABIEL אֲבִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “God is my father” in Hebrew. This was the name of the grandfather of Saul in the Old Testament.
ABIGAIL אֲבִיגַיִל f English, German, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name אֲבִיגָיִל (‘Avigayil) meaning “my father is joy”. In the Old Testament this is the name of Nabal’s wife. After Nabal’s death she became the third wife of King David…. [more]
ABIHU אֲבִיהוּא m Biblical
Means “he is my father” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Aaron in the Old Testament. He and his brother Nadab were killed by God because they presented him with unauthorized fire.
ABIJAH אֲבִיָה m & f Biblical
Means “my father is YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of several characters, both male and female, including the second king of Judah.
ABILENE Αβιληνη f Biblical
From a place name mentioned briefly in the New Testament. It possibly means “grass” in Hebrew.
ABIMAEL אֲבִימָאֵל m Biblical
Means “my father is God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is listed as a descendant of Shem.
ABIMELECH אֲבִימֶלֶך m Biblical
Means “my father is king” in Hebrew. This is the name of several characters in the Old Testament including a king of Gerar who takes Abraham’s wife Sarah, but is forced by God to give her back.
ABIRAM אֲבִירָם m Biblical
Means “my father is exalted” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Abiram is swallowed by an earthquake after rebelling against the leadership of Moses.
ABISHAG אֲבִישַׁג f Biblical
Means “my father strays” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Abishag is a young woman who tends King David in his old age.
ABISHAI אֲבִישַׁי m Biblical
Means “my father is a gift” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is one of King David’s heroes.
ABITAL אֲבִיטָל f Biblical
Means “my father is the night dew” in Hebrew. She is the fifth wife of David in the Old Testament.
ABNER אַבְנֵר m English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means “my father is a light” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Abner was a cousin of Saul and the commander of his army. After he killed Asahel he was himself slain by Asahel’s brother Joab. It has been used as an English Christian given name since the Protestant Reformation. It was popular with the Puritans, who brought it to America in the 17th century.
ABRAHAM אַבְרָהָם m English, Hebrew, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
This name may be viewed either as meaning “father of many” in Hebrew or else as a contraction of ABRAM (1) and הָמוֹן (hamon) “many, multitude”. The biblical patriarch Abraham was originally named Abram but God changed his name (see Genesis 17:5). With his father Terah, he led his wife Sarah, his nephew Lot and their other followers from Ur into Canaan. He is regarded by Jews as being the founder of the Hebrews through his son Isaac and by Muslims as being the founder of the Arabs through his son Ishmael…. [more]
ABRAM (1) אַבְרָם m English, Biblical
Means “high father” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament God changed Abram’s name to Abraham (see Genesis 17:5).
ABSALOM אַבְשָׁלוֹם m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name אַבְשָׁלוֹם (‘Avshalom) which meant “my father is peace”. In the Old Testament he is a son of King David. He avenged his sister Tamar by arranging the murder of her rapist, their half-brother Amnon. He later led a revolt against his father. While fleeing on the back of a mule he got his head caught in a tree and was killed by Joab.
ACHAICUS Αχαικος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Αχαικος (Achaikos), which referred to the region in Greece called Αχαια (Achaia), situated on the northern coast of the Peloponnese. In the New Testament this is the name of a Corinthian Christian who aids Saint Paul.
ACHAN עָכָן m Biblical
Possibly a variation of the Hebrew word עֲכָר (‘akhar) meaning “trouble”. In the Old Testament, Achan is stoned to death because he steals forbidden items during the assault on Jericho.
ACHIM (2) Αχειμ m Biblical
Possibly means “he will establish” in Hebrew. In the New Testament this name is listed as an ancestor of Jesus.
ADAH עָדָה f Biblical
Means “adornment” in Hebrew. This was the name of the wives of both Lamech and Esau in the Old Testament.
ADALIA אֲדַלְיָא m Biblical
Possibly means “YAHWEH is just” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Haman.
ADAM אָדָם, Αδαμ m English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Russian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Romanian, Hebrew, Arabic, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
This is the Hebrew word for “man”. It could be ultimately derived from Hebrew אדם (‘adam) meaning “to be red”, referring to the ruddy colour of human skin, or from Akkadian adamu meaning “to make”…. [more]
ADINA (1) עֲדִינָא, Αδινα m & f Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Hebrew
From Hebrew עֲדִינָא (‘adina’) meaning “slender, delicate”. This name is borne by a soldier in the Old Testament. It is also used in modern Hebrew as a feminine name, typically spelled עֲדִינָה.
ADINO עֲדִינוֹ m Biblical
Means “ornament” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of King David’s mighty men.
ADLAI עַדְלָי m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Contracted form of ADALIA. This is the name of the father of one of King David’s herdsmen in the Old Testament.
ADONIJAH אֲדֹנִיָה m Biblical
Means “my lord is YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is the name of one of King David’s sons in the Old Testament. Though he was the eldest surviving son of David, he was passed over as heir to the throne in favour of Solomon.
ADONIRAM אֲדֹנִירָם m Biblical
Means “my lord is exalted” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of an overseer of tribute under the kings David, Solomon and Rehoboam. He was stoned to death when the Israelites revolted.
AGRIPPA m & f Ancient Roman, Biblical
Roman cognomen of unknown meaning, possibly from Greek αγριος (agrios) “wild” and ‘ιππος (hippos) “horse” or possibly of Etruscan origin. It was also used as a praenomen, or given name, by the Furia and Menenia families. In the New Testament this name was borne by Herod Agrippa (a grandson of Herod the Great), the king of Israel who put the apostle James to death. It was also borne by the 1st-century BC Roman general Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa.
AHAB אַחְאָב m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means “uncle”, from Hebrew אָח (‘ach) “brother” and אֲב (‘av) “father”. This was the name of a king of Israel, the husband of Jezebel, as told in the Old Testament. He was admonished by Elijah for his sinful behaviour. This name was later used by Herman Melville in his novel ‘Moby-Dick’ (1851), where it belongs to a sea captain obsessively hunting for a white whale.
AHINOAM אֲחִינֹעַם f Biblical
Means “my brother is pleasant” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of wives of both Saul and David.
ALEXANDER Αλεξανδρος m English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Hungarian, Slovak, Biblical, Ancient Greek (Latinized), Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek name Αλεξανδρος (Alexandros), which meant “defending men” from Greek αλεξω (alexo) “to defend, help” and ανηρ (aner) “man” (genitive ανδρος). In Greek mythology this was another name of the hero Paris, and it also belongs to several characters in the New Testament. However, the most famous bearer was Alexander the Great, King of Macedon. In the 4th century BC he built a huge empire out of Greece, Egypt, Persia, and parts of India. Due to his fame, and later medieval tales involving him, use of his name spread throughout Europe…. [more]
ALLON אַלּוֹן m Biblical
Means “oak” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
ALPHAEUS Αλφαιος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From Αλφαιος (Alphaios), the Greek form of a Hebrew name that meant “changing”. In the New Testament this is the name of the fathers of the apostles James and Levi.
ALVAH עַלְוָה m Biblical
Means “his highness” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned in the Old Testament as belonging to a descendant of Esau.
AMAL (2) עָמָל m Biblical
Means “work” in Hebrew. This was the name of an Asherite in the Old Testament.
AMARIAH אֲמַרְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has said” in Hebrew. This was the name of several Old Testament characters.
AMI (1) אָמִי m Biblical
Means “trustworthy, reliable” in Hebrew. This was the name of a servant of King Solomon in the Old Testament.
AMITTAI אֲמִתַּי m Biblical
Means “my truth” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of the prophet Jonah.
AMMIEL עַמִּיאֵל m Biblical
Means “God is my kinsman” in Hebrew. This is the name of one of the spies sent out by Moses in the Old Testament.
AMNON אַמְנוֹן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, Hebrew
Means “faithful” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the eldest son of King David. He was killed by his brother Absalom in revenge for the rape of his sister Tamar.
AMOS עָמוֹס, Αμως m English, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
Means “carried” in Hebrew. Amos is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Amos, which speaks against greed, corruption and oppression of the poor. Written about the 8th century BC, it is among the oldest of the prophetic books. As an English name, Amos has been used since the Protestant Reformation, and was popular among the Puritans.
AMRAM עַמְרָם m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Hebrew
Means “exalted nation” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Amram is the father of Moses.
ANAH עֲנָה f & m Biblical
Means “answer” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name belongs to one female character and two male characters.
ANAIAH עֲנָיָה m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “YAHWEH answers” in Hebrew. This was the name of a minor character in the Old Testament.
ANAN (2) עָנָן m Biblical
Means “cloud” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned very briefly in the Old Testament.
ANANI עֲנָנִי m Biblical
Means “my cloud” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned in the Old Testament as belonging to a descendant of King David.
ANANIAS ‘Ανανιας m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From ‘Ανανιας (Hananias), the Greek form of HANANIAH. In Acts in the New Testament this is the name of three characters: a disciple in Damascus, the husband of Sapphira, and the high priest of the Jews who tries Paul.
ANATH (1) עֲנָת, Αναθ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “answer” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Shamgar.
ANDREW m English, Biblical
English form of the Greek name Ανδρεας (Andreas), which was derived from ανδρειος (andreios) “manly, masculine”, a derivative of ανηρ (aner) “man”. In the New Testament the apostle Andrew, the first disciple to join Jesus, is the brother of Simon Peter. According to tradition, he later preached in the Black Sea region, with some legends saying he was crucified on an X-shaped cross. Andrew, being a Greek name, was probably only a nickname or a translation of his real Hebrew name, which is not known…. [more]
ANNA Αννα f English, Italian, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Estonian, Latvian, Greek, Hungarian, Polish, Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Czech, Slovak, Bulgarian, Icelandic, Faroese, Catalan, Occitan, Breton, Biblical, Old Church Slavic, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Form of Channah (see HANNAH) used in the Greek and Latin Old Testament. Many later Old Testament translations, including the English, use the Hannah spelling instead of Anna. The name appears briefly in the New Testament belonging to a prophetess who recognized Jesus as the Messiah. It was a popular name in the Byzantine Empire from an early date, and in the Middle Ages it became common among Western Christians due to veneration of Saint Anna (usually known as Saint Anne in English), the name traditionally assigned to the mother of the Virgin Mary. In the English-speaking world, this form came into general use in the 18th century, joining Ann and Anne…. [more]
ANNAS m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Contracted form of ANANIAS. This was the name of one of the high priests of the Jews in the New Testament.
APPHIA Απφια f Biblical
Greek form of a Hebrew name which possibly meant “increasing”. This is a name mentioned in Paul’s epistle to Philemon in the New Testament.
AQUILA m & f Biblical, Ancient Roman
From a Roman cognomen which meant “eagle” in Latin. In Acts in the New Testament Paul lives with Aquila and his wife Priscilla (or Prisca) for a time.
ARAN (2) אֲרָן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “wild goat” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Dishan in the Old Testament.
ARCHELAUS Αρχελαος m Ancient Greek (Latinized), Biblical Latin, Biblical
Latinized form of the Greek name Αρχελαος (Archelaos), which meant “master of the people” from αρχος (archos) “master” and λαος (laos) “people”. This was the name of a son of Herod the Great. He ruled over Judea, Samaria and Idumea.
ARELI אַרְאֵלִי m Biblical
Means “lion of God, hero” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Gad in the Old Testament.
ARETAS Αρετας m Biblical
Greek form of an Aramaic name, of unknown meaning. This was the name of four Nabataean kings of Petra in Jordan, including the first king (2nd century BC). King Aretas IV is mentioned briefly in the New Testament.
ARIDAI אֲרִידַי m Biblical
Meaning unknown, possibly of Persian origin. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the ten sons of Haman killed by the Jews.
ARIEH אַרְיֵה m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “lion” in Hebrew. This was the name of an officer of king Pekahiah in the Old Testament.
ARIEL אֲרִיאֵל, Αριηλ m & f Hebrew, English, French, Spanish, Biblical, Biblical Greek
Means “lion of God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament it is used as another name for the city of Jerusalem. Shakespeare used it as the name of a spirit in his play ‘The Tempest’ (1611), and one of the moons of Uranus bears this name in his honour. As an English name, it became more common for females in the 1980s, especially after it was used for the title character in the Walt Disney film ‘The Little Mermaid’ (1989).
ARTAXERXES Αρταξερξης m Ancient Persian (Hellenized), Biblical
Greek form of the Persian name Artakhshathra meaning “righteous ruler”. This was the name of several Achaemenid Persian rulers. It was also borne by the founder of the Sassanid Empire, usually known by the Middle Persian form Ardashir.
ASA אָסָא m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means “healer” in Hebrew. This name was borne by the third king of Judah, as told in the Old Testament.
ASAPH אָסָף m Biblical
Means “collector” in Hebrew. This name belongs to several minor characters in the Old Testament.
ASENATH אָסְנַת f Biblical
Means “devoted to the goddess NEITH” in Ancient Egyptian. In the Old Testament this is the name of Joseph’s Egyptian wife. She was the mother of Manasseh and Ephraim.
ASHER אָשֵׁר m Hebrew, English, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “happy, blessed” in Hebrew. Asher in the Old Testament is a son of Jacob by Leah’s handmaid Zilpah, and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. The meaning of his name is explained in Genesis 30:13.
ASHTORETH עַשְׁתֹרֶת f Biblical, Near Eastern Mythology
From עַשְׁתֹרֶת (‘Ashtoret), the Hebrew form of the name of a Phoenician goddess of love, war and fertility. Her name is cognate to that of the Babylonian goddess ISHTAR.
ATARAH עֲטָרָה f Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “crown” in Hebrew. She was a minor Old Testament character, the wife of Jerahmeel.
ATHALIAH עֲתַלְיָה f & m Biblical
Means “afflicted of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is both a feminine and masculine name. It was borne by the daughter of Ahab and Jezebel, who later came to rule Judah as a queen.
AVITAL אֲבִיטָל f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Hebrew form of ABITAL.
AZAREL עֲזַרְאֵל m Biblical
Means “God has helped” in Hebrew. This is the name of several minor Old Testament characters.
AZARIA עֲזַרְיָה m Biblical
Variant of AZARIAH.
AZARIAH עֲזַרְיָה m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has helped” in Hebrew. This is the name of many Old Testament characters including of one of the three men the Babylonian king ordered cast into a fiery furnace. His Babylonian name was Abednego.
AZAZEL עֲזָאזֵל m Biblical
Means “scapegoat” in Hebrew. This is the name of the recipient of a sacrificial goat in the Old Testament. The identity of Azazel is not clear; it may in fact be the name of the place where the goat is to be sacrificed, or it may be the name of some sort of evil desert demon.
AZAZIAH עֲזַזְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is strong” in Hebrew. This is the name of three minor characters in the Old Testament.
AZEL אָצֵל m Biblical
Means “reserved” in Hebrew. This is both the name of a minor character and a place name in the Old Testament.
AZRIEL עֲזְרִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “help of God”, derived from Hebrew עָזַר (‘azar) “help” and אֵל (‘el) “God”. This was the name of three minor characters in the Old Testament.
AZUBAH עֲזוּבָה f Biblical
Means “forsaken” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of Caleb’s wife.
BARAK (1) בָּרָק, Βαρακ m Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
Means “lightning” in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament, Barak was a military commander under the guidance of the prophetess Deborah. They defeated the Canaanite army led by Sisera.
BARNABAS Βαρναβας m German (Rare), English (Rare), Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Greek form of an Aramaic name. In Acts in the New Testament the byname Barnabas was given to a man named Joseph, a Jew from Cyprus who was a companion of Paul on his missionary journeys. The original Aramaic form is unattested, but it may be from בּר נביא (bar naviya’) meaning “son of the prophet”, though in Acts 4:36 it is claimed that the name means “son of encouragement”. As an English name, it came into occasional use after the 12th century.
BARTHOLOMEW m English, Biblical
From Βαρθολομαιος (Bartholomaios), which was the Greek form of an Aramaic name meaning “son of TALMAI”. In the New Testament Bartholomew is the byname of an apostle, possibly the same person as the apostle Nathanael. According to tradition he was a missionary to India before returning westward to Armenia, where he was martyred by flaying. Due to the popularity of this saint the name became common in England during the Middle Ages.
BARUCH בָּרוּך m Biblical, Hebrew
Means “blessed” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a companion of the prophet Jeremiah, acting as his scribe and assistant. The deuterocanonical Book of Baruch was supposedly written by him. A famous bearer was Baruch Spinoza (1632-1677), a Dutch-Jewish rationalist philosopher.
BASEMATH בָּשְׂמַת f Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means “fragrance” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a wife of Esau.
BASHEMATH בָּשְׂמַת f Biblical
Variant of BASEMATH.
BASMATH בָּשְׂמַת f Biblical, Biblical Latin
Variant of BASEMATH. This was the name of a daughter of Solomon in the Old Testament.
BATHSHEBA בַּת־שֶׁבַע f Biblical
Means “daughter of the oath” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a woman married to Uriah the Hittite. King David seduced her and made her pregnant, so he arranged to have her husband killed in battle and then married her. She was the mother of Solomon.
BEELZEBUB בַּעַל זְבוּב m Biblical
From Hebrew בַּעַל זְבוּב (Ba’al Zevuv) meaning “lord of flies”, intended as a mocking alteration of בּאל זבל (Ba’al Zevul) “Ba’al the exalted”, one of the Canaanite names for their god BA’AL. In Milton’s ‘Paradise Lost’ (1667) this is the name of Satan’s chief lieutenant.
BELIAL בְּלִיַעַל m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Judeo-Christian Legend
Means “worthless” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this term is used to refer to various wicked people. In the New Testament, Paul uses it as a name for Satan. In later Christian tradition Belial became an evil angel associated with lawlessness and lust.
BELSHAZZAR בֵּלְשַׁאצַּר m Ancient Near Eastern, Biblical
From בֵּלְשַׁאצַּר (Belshatzzar), the Hebrew form of the Akkadian name Bel-sarra-usur meaning “BA’AL protect the king”. This was the name of the son of Nabonidus, the last king of the Babylonian Empire before it was conquered by the Persians in the 6th century BC. In the Old Testament Book of Daniel Belshazzar is the last king of Babylon who sees the mystical handwriting on the wall, which is interpreted by Daniel to portend the end of the empire.
BENAIAH בְּנָיָהוּ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name בְּנָיָהוּ (Benayahu) meaning “YAHWEH has built”. This was the name of numerous Old Testament characters.
BENJAMIN בִּנְיָמִין m English, French, German, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Biblical
From the Hebrew name בִּנְיָמִין (Binyamin) which means “son of the south” or “son of the right hand”. Benjamin in the Old Testament is the twelfth and youngest son of Jacob and the founder of one of the southern tribes of the Hebrews. He was originally named בֶּן־אוֹנִי (Ben-‘oniy) meaning “son of my sorrow” by his mother Rachel, who died shortly after childbirth, but it was later changed by his father (see Genesis 35:18)…. [more]
BERNICE f English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Contracted form of BERENICE. It occurs briefly in Acts in the New Testament belonging to a sister of King Herod Agrippa II.
BETHANY f English, Biblical
From the name of a biblical town, possibly derived from Hebrew בֵּית־תְּאֵנָה (beit-te’enah) meaning “house of figs”. In the New Testament the town of Bethany was the home of Lazarus and his sisters Mary and Martha. It has been in use as a rare given name in the English-speaking world since the 19th century, used primarily by Catholics in honour of Mary of Bethany. In America it became moderately common after the 1950s.
BETHEL בֵּית־אֵל f Biblical
From an Old Testament place name meaning “house of God” in Hebrew. This was a town north of Jerusalem, where Jacob saw his vision of the stairway. It is occasionally used as a given name.
BETHUEL בֵּתוּאֵל m Biblical
Means “man of God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Rebecca.
BEULAH בְּעוּלָה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English
Means “married” in Hebrew. The name is used in the Old Testament to refer to the land of Israel (Isaiah 62:4). As an English given name, Beulah has been used since the Protestant Reformation.
BILHAH בִּלְהָה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “bashful” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the handmaid given to Jacob by his wife Rachel. By him she was the mother of Dan and Naphtali.
BITHIAH בִּתְיָה f Biblical
Means “daughter of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a daughter of Pharaoh. She is traditionally equated with the pharaoh’s daughter who drew Moses from the Nile.
BOAZ בֹּעַז m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “swiftness” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the man who marries Ruth.
BUZ בּוּז m Biblical
Means “contempt” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of ABRAHAM’s brother Nahor in the Old Testament.
CAIAPHAS Καιαφας m Biblical
Meaning unknown, probably of Aramaic origin. In the New Testament this is the name of the Jewish high priest who condemns Jesus.
CAIN קָיִן m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means “acquired” in Hebrew. In Genesis in the Old Testament Cain is the first son of Adam and Eve. He killed his brother Abel after God accepted Abel’s offering of meat instead of his offering of plant-based foods. After this Cain was banished to be a wanderer.
CAINAN קֵינָן m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Variant of KENAN.
CALEB כָּלֵב m English, Biblical
Most likely related to Hebrew כֶּלֶב (kelev) meaning “dog”. An alternate theory connects it to Hebrew כָּל (kal) “whole, all of” and לֵב (lev) “heart”. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the twelve spies sent by Moses into Canaan. Of the Israelites who left Egypt with Moses, Caleb and Joshua were the only ones who lived to see the Promised Land…. [more]
CANAAN כְּנַעַן m Biblical
Meaning unknown. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Ham. He is said to be the ancestor of the Canaanite people.
CANDACE f English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the hereditary title of the queens of Ethiopia, as mentioned in Acts in the New Testament. It is apparently derived from Cushitic kdke meaning “queen mother”. In some versions of the Bible it is spelled Kandake, reflecting the Greek spelling Κανδακη. It was used as a given name by the Puritans after the Protestant Reformation. It was popularized in the 20th century by a character in the movie ‘Meet the Stewarts’ (1942).
CARMI כַּרְמִי m Biblical
Means “vine” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Reuben in the Old Testament.
CARPUS Καρπος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latin form of the Greek name Καρπος (Karpos), which meant “fruit, profits”. The name is mentioned briefly in the New Testament in the second epistle of Timothy.
CEPHAS Κηφας m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means “rock” in Aramaic. The apostle Simon was called Cephas by Jesus because he was to be the rock upon which the Christian church was to be built. In most versions of the New Testament Cephas is translated into Greek Πετρος (Petros) (in English Peter).
CHENANIAH כְּנַנְיָהוּ m Biblical
Variant of KENANIAH used in several translations of the Old Testament.
CHLOE Χλοη f English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Ancient Greek, Greek Mythology
Means “green shoot” in Greek, referring to new plant growth in the spring. This was an epithet of the Greek goddess Demeter. The name is also mentioned by Paul in one of his epistles in the New Testament. As an English name, Chloe has been in use since the Protestant Reformation.
CLAUDIA f English, German, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Romanian, Biblical, Ancient Roman
Feminine form of CLAUDIUS. It is mentioned briefly in the New Testament. As a Christian name it was very rare until the 16th century.
CLEOPAS Κλεοπας m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Shortened form of the Greek name Kleopatros (see CLEOPATRA). In the New Testament Cleopas is a disciple who sees Jesus after his resurrection.
CLEOPHAS Κλοπας m Biblical
Form of CLOPAS used in several versions of the New Testament.
CLOPAS Κλωπας m Biblical
Meaning unknown, probably of Aramaic origin. In the New Testament Clopas is mentioned briefly as the husband of one of the women who witnessed the crucifixion, sometimes identified with Alphaeus.
CORNELIUS m Ancient Roman, English, Dutch, German, Biblical
Roman family name which possibly derives from the Latin element cornu “horn”. In Acts in the New Testament Cornelius is a centurion who is directed by an angel to seek Peter. After speaking with Peter he converts to Christianity, and he is traditionally deemed the first gentile convert. The name was also borne by a few early saints, including a 3rd-century pope. In England it came into use in the 16th century, partly due to Dutch influence.
CYRUS Κυρος m English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Ancient Greek (Latinized)
From Κυρος (Kyros), the Greek form of the Persian name Kūrush, which may mean “far sighted” or “young”. The name is sometimes associated with Greek κυριος (kyrios) “lord”. It was borne by several kings of Persia, including Cyrus the Great, who conquered Babylon. He is famous in the Old Testament for freeing the captive Jews and allowing them to return to Israel. As an English name, it first came into use among the Puritans after the Protestant Reformation.
DAMARIS Δαμαρις f Biblical, Biblical Greek
Probably means “calf, heifer, girl” from Greek δαμαλις (damalis). In the New Testament this is the name of a woman converted to Christianity by Saint Paul.
DAN (1) דָּן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, Hebrew
Means “he judged” in Hebrew. Dan in the Old Testament is one of the twelve sons of Jacob by Rachel’s servant Bilhah, and the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. His name is explained in Genesis 30:6.
DANIEL דָּנִיֵּאל, Δανιηλ m English, Hebrew, French, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian, Slovene, Bulgarian, Macedonian, Croatian, Armenian, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name דָּנִיֵּאל (Daniyyel) meaning “God is my judge”. Daniel was a Hebrew prophet whose story is told in the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament. He lived during the Jewish captivity in Babylon, where he served in the court of the king, rising to prominence by interpreting the king’s dreams. The book also presents Daniel’s four visions of the end of the world…. [more]
DARIUS m English, Lithuanian, Romanian, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Roman form of Δαρειος (Dareios), which was the Greek form of the Persian name Dārayavahush, which was composed of the elements dâraya “to possess” and vahu “good”. Three ancient kings of Persia bore this name, including Darius the Great who expanded the Achaemenid Empire to its greatest extent. His forces invaded Greece but were defeated in the Battle of Marathon…. [more]
DATHAN דָּתָן m Biblical
Possibly means “fountain” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the conspirators against Moses.
DAVID דָּוִד m English, Hebrew, French, Scottish, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Czech, Slovene, Russian, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Romanian, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name דָּוִד (Dawid), which was probably derived from Hebrew דוד (dwd) meaning “beloved”. David was the second and greatest of the kings of Israel, ruling in the 10th century BC. Several stories about him are told in the Old Testament, including his defeat of Goliath, a giant Philistine. According to the New Testament, Jesus was descended from him…. [more]
DEBORAH דְּבוֹרָה f English, Hebrew, Biblical
Means “bee” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Book of Judges, Deborah is a heroine and prophetess who leads the Israelites when they are threatened by the Canaanites. She forms an army under the command of Barak, and together they destroy the army of the Canaanite commander Sisera. Also in the Old Testament, this is the name of the nurse of Rebecca…. [more]
DELAIAH דְּלָיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has drawn” in Hebrew. This was the name of several Old Testament characters.
DELILAH דְּלִילָה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English
Means “delicate, weak, languishing” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament she is the lover of Samson, whom she betrays to the Philistines by cutting his hair, which is the source of his power. Despite her character flaws, the name began to be used by the Puritans in the 17th century. It has been used occasionally in the English-speaking world since that time.
DIKLAH דִּקְלָה m & f Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means “palm grove” in Hebrew or Aramaic. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Joktan. In modern times it is also used as a feminine name.
DINAH דִּינָה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English
Means “judged” in Hebrew. She is the daughter of Jacob and Leah in the Old Testament. It has been used as an English given name since after the Protestant Reformation.
DIONYSIUS Διονυσιος m Ancient Greek (Latinized), Biblical
Latin form of DIONYSIOS. Dionysius the Areopagite, who is mentioned in the New Testament, was a judge converted to Christianity by Saint Paul. This was also the name of many other early saints, including a 3rd-century pope.
DORCAS Δορκας f Biblical
Derived from Greek δορκας (dorkas) meaning “gazelle”. This is the Greek translation of the name Tabitha in the New Testament (see Acts 9:36).
DRUSILLA f Biblical, Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin
Feminine diminutive of the Roman family name DRUSUS. In Acts in the New Testament Drusilla is the wife of Felix.
EBENEZER אֶבֶן הָעָזֶר m Biblical
Means “stone of help” in Hebrew. This was the name of a monument erected by Samuel in the Old Testament. Charles Dickens used it for the miserly character Ebenezer Scrooge in his novel ‘A Christmas Carol’ (1843).
EDER (1) עֵדֶר m Biblical
Means “flock” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Beriah in the Old Testament.
EDNA (2) עֶדְנָה f Biblical
Means “pleasure” in Hebrew. This name appears in the Old Testament Apocrypha in the Book of Tobit.
EDOM אֱדוֹם m Biblical
Means “red” in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament, Esau was given this name because he traded his birthright for a helping of red broth. The bible goes on to tell that Esau was the founder of the ancient nation of Edom, located to the south of the kingdom of Judah.
EFRAIM אֶפְרָיִם m Hebrew, Biblical
Variant of EPHRAIM.
EHUD אֵהוּד m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Meaning unknown, possibly related to Hebrew אֶחָד (‘echad) meaning “one”. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the biblical judges. He killed Eglon, the king of Moab, and freed the city of Jericho from Moabite rule.
ELAH אֵלָה f & m Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “oak tree” or “terebinth tree” in Hebrew. This was the name of the fourth king of Israel, as told in the Old Testament. He was murdered by Zimri, who succeeded him. In modern Hebrew this is typically a feminine name.
ELAM עֵילָם m Biblical
Possibly means either “hidden” or “eternity” in Hebrew. This was the name of several characters in the Old Testament, including a son of Shem who was the ancestor of the Elamite peoples.
ELDAD אֵלְדָד m Biblical
Means “God has loved” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is one of the two elders who prophesizes in the Israelite camp.
ELEAZAR אֶלְעָזָר, Ελεαζαρ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name אֶלְעָזָר (‘El’azar) meaning “my God has helped”. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the sons of Aaron.
ELI (1) עֵלִי, Ηλι m English, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
Means “ascension” in Hebrew. In the Books of Samuel in the Old Testament he is a high priest of the Israelites. He took the young Samuel into his service and gave him guidance when God spoke to him. Because of the misdeeds of his sons, Eli and his descendants were cursed to die before reaching old age…. [more]
ELIAKIM אֶלְיָקִים m Biblical
Means “God rises” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the master of Hezekiah’s household.
ELIEZER אֱלִיעֶזֶר, Ελιεζερ m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From Hebrew אֱלִיעֶזֶר (‘Eli’ezer) meaning “my God is help”. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a servant of Abraham and one of the sons of Moses (see Exodus 18:4 for an explanation of the significance of the name).
ELIHU אֶלִיהוּא m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English (Archaic)
Means “my God is he” in Hebrew. This was the name of several characters in the Old Testament including one of the friends of Job.
ELIJAH אֱלִיָּהוּ m English, Hebrew, Biblical
From the Hebrew name אֱלִיָּהוּ (‘Eliyyahu) meaning “my God is YAHWEH”. Elijah was a Hebrew prophet and miracle worker, as told in the two Books of Kings in the Old Testament. He was active in the 9th century BC during the reign of King Ahab of Israel and his Phoenician-born queen Jezebel. Elijah confronted the king and queen over their idolatry of the Canaanite god Ba’al and other wicked deeds. At the end of his life he was carried to heaven in a chariot of fire, and was succeeded by Elisha. In the New Testament, Elijah and Moses appear next to Jesus when he is transfigured…. [more]
ELIOENAI אֶלְיוֹעֵינַי m Biblical
Means “my eyes look to God” in Hebrew. This was the name of several minor characters in the Old Testament.
ELIPHALET אֱלִיפָלֶט m Biblical
Variant of ELIPHELET used in some versions of the Old Testament to refer to the son of David.
ELIPHELET אֱלִיפֶלֶט m Biblical
Means “God is release” in Hebrew. This is the name of several people in the Old Testament including a son of David.
ELISABETH f German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
German and Dutch form of ELIZABETH. It is also a variant English form, reflecting the spelling used in the Authorized Version of the New Testament.
ELISHA אֱלִישַׁע m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
From the Hebrew name אֱלִישַׁע (‘Elisha’), a contracted form of אֱלִישׁוּעַ (‘Elishu’a) meaning “my God is salvation”. According to the Old Testament, Elisha was a prophet and miracle worker. He was the attendant of Elijah and succeeded him after his ascension to heaven.
ELISHEBA אֱלִישֶׁבַע f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Original Hebrew form of ELIZABETH. This name occurs in the Old Testament belonging to the wife of Aaron.
ELIUD Ελιουδ m Biblical
Greek form of a Hebrew name meaning “God is grandeur”. The Gospel of Matthew lists him as an ancestor of Jesus.
ELIZABETH f English, Biblical
From Ελισαβετ (Elisabet), the Greek form of the Hebrew name אֱלִישֶׁבַע (‘Elisheva’) meaning “my God is an oath” or perhaps “my God is abundance”. The Hebrew form appears in the Old Testament where Elisheba is the wife of Aaron, while the Greek form appears in the New Testament where Elizabeth is the mother of John the Baptist…. [more]
ELKANAH אֱלְקָנָה m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “God has purchased” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Samuel.
ELNATHAN אֱלְנָתָן m Biblical
Means “God has given” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a grandfather of king Jehoiachin and a son of Akbor.
ELON אֵילוֹן m Biblical
Means “oak” in Hebrew. This was the name of one of the ruling judges of the Israelites according to the Old Testament.
EMMANUEL עִמָּנוּאֵל m Biblical, French, English
From the Hebrew name עִמָּנוּאֵל (‘Immanu’el) meaning “God is with us”. This was the foretold name of the Messiah in the Old Testament. It has been used in England since the 16th century in the spellings Emmanuel and Immanuel, though it has not been widespread. The name has been more common in continental Europe, especially in Spain and Portugal (in the spellings Manuel and Manoel).
ENOCH חֲנוֹך, Ενωχ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name חֲנוֹך (Chanokh) meaning “dedicated”. In Genesis in the Old Testament this is the name of both the son of Cain and the father of Methuselah, who was the supposed author of the apocryphal Books of Enoch.
ENOS אֱנוֹשׁ, Ενως m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Form of ENOSH used in many versions of the Old Testament.
ENOSH אֱנוֹשׁ m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “human being” in Hebrew. He was a son of Seth and a grandson of Adam in the genealogies in Genesis in the Old Testament.
EPAPHRAS Επαφρας m Biblical, Ancient Greek, Biblical Greek, Biblical Latin
Derived from Greek επαφρος (epaphros) meaning “foamy”. In the New Testament this is the name of one of Paul’s co-workers.
EPHRAIM אֶפְרָיִם, Εφραιμ m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name אֶפְרָיִם (‘Efrayim) which meant “fruitful”. In the Old Testament Ephraim is a son of Joseph and Asenath and the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel.
EPHRATH אֶפְרָת, Εφραθ f Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “fruitful place” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name was borne by one of the wives of Caleb. Also in the Bible, it is the name of the place where Rachel was buried.
ERAN עֵירָן m Biblical
Means “watchful, vigilant” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is a grandson of Ephraim.
ERASTUS Εραστος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Εραστος (Erastos) meaning “beloved”. This was the name of an assistant of Paul mentioned in Acts and two epistles in the New Testament.
ESAU עֵשָׂו, Ησαυ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name עֵשָׂו (‘Esaw) which possibly meant “hairy”. In the Old Testament Esau is the elder of the twin sons of Isaac and Rebecca. Once when he was very hungry he sold his birthright to his twin Jacob for a bowl of stew. Later Jacob disguised himself as Esau and received the elder son’s blessing from the blind Isaac. Esau was the ancestor of the Edomites.
ESDRAS Εσδρας m Biblical, Biblical Greek
Greek form of EZRA. This spelling is used in parts of the Old Testament Apocrypha.
ESTHER אֶסְתֵר, Εσθηρ f English, French, Spanish, Dutch, German, Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Jewish, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Possibly means “star” in Persian. Alternatively it could be a derivative of the name of the Near Eastern goddess ISHTAR. The Book of Esther in the Old Testament tells the story of Queen Esther, the Jewish wife of the king of Persia. The king’s advisor Haman persuaded the king to exterminate all the Jews in the realm. Warned of this plot by her cousin Mordecai, Esther revealed her Jewish ancestry and convinced the king to execute Haman instead. Her original Hebrew name was Hadassah…. [more]
ETHAN אֵיתָן m English, French, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name אֵיתָן (‘Eitan) meaning “solid, enduring, firm”. In the Old Testament this name is borne by a few minor characters, including the wise man Ethan the Ezrahite, supposedly the author of Psalm 89…. [more]
EUNICE Ευνικη f Biblical, English, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Ευνικη (Eunike) which meant “good victory” from ευ (eu) “good” and νικη (nike) “victory”. The New Testament mentions her as the mother of Timothy. As an English name, it was first used after the Protestant Reformation.
EUTYCHUS Ευτυχος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Ευτυχος (Eutychos), which was derived from Greek ευτυχης (eutyches) “fortunate”. The word was formed of the elements ευ (eu) “good” and τυχη (tyche) “chance, luck, fortune”. In the New Testament this is the name of a young man who went to sleep while Paul was preaching and fell from the third story of the building. He was believed to be dead, but later turned out to be alive.
EVE חַוָּה f English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name חַוָּה (Chawwah), which was derived from the Hebrew word חוה (chawah) “to breathe” or the related word חיה (chayah) “to live”. According to the Old Testament Book of Genesis, Eve and Adam were the first humans. God created her from one of Adam’s ribs to be his companion. At the urging of a serpent she ate the forbidden fruit and shared some with Adam, causing their expulsion from the Garden of Eden…. [more]
EZAR m Biblical
Variant of EZER.
EZEKIEL יְחֶזְקֵאל m Biblical, English
From the Hebrew name יְחֶזְקֵאל (Yechezqel) meaning “God strengthens”. Ezekiel is a major prophet of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Ezekiel. He lived in Jerusalem until the Babylonian conquest and captivity of Israel, at which time he was taken to Babylon. The Book of Ezekiel describes his vivid symbolic visions that predict the restoration of the kingdom of Israel. As an English given name, Ezekiel has been used since the Protestant Reformation.
EZER אֵצֶר m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “help” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Seir, as well as several other minor characters.
EZRA עֶזְרָא m Biblical, English, Hebrew
Means “help” in Hebrew. Ezra is a prophet of the Old Testament and the author of the Book of Ezra. It has been used as a given name in the English-speaking world since the Protestant Reformation. The American poet Ezra Pound (1885-1972) was a famous bearer.
FELIX m German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, English, Romanian, Ancient Roman, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From a Roman cognomen meaning “lucky, successful” in Latin. It was acquired as an agnomen, or nickname, by the 1st-century BC Roman general Sulla. It also appears in the New Testament belonging to the governor of Judea who imprisoned Saint Paul…. [more]
FESTUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin, Biblical
Roman cognomen which possibly meant “festival, holiday” in Latin. This was the name of a Roman official in the New Testament.
GABRIEL גַּבְרִיאֵל, Γαβριηλ m French, Spanish, Portuguese, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Catalan, English, Romanian, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name גַבְרִיאֵל (Gavri’el) meaning “God is my strong man”, derived from גֶּבֶר (gever) “strong man, hero” and אֶל (‘El) “God”. Gabriel was one of the seven archangels in Hebrew tradition, often appearing as a messenger of God. In the Old Testament he is sent to interpret the visions of the prophet Daniel, while in the New Testament he serves as the announcer of the births of John to Zechariah and Jesus to Mary. According to Islamic tradition he was the angel who dictated the Qur’an to Muhammad…. [more]
GAD גָּד m Biblical
Means “fortune, luck” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Gad is the first son of Jacob by Leah’s slave-girl Zilpah, and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of the Israelites. His name is explained in Genesis 30:11. Another Gad in the Old Testament is a prophet of King David.
GAIUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin, Biblical
Roman praenomen, or given name, of uncertain meaning. It is possibly derived from Latin gaudere “to rejoice”, though it may be of unknown Etruscan origin. This was a very common Roman praenomen, the most famous bearers being Gaius Julius Caesar, the great leader of the Roman Republic, and his adopted son Gaius Octavius (later known as Augustus), the first Roman emperor. This name also appears in the New Testament belonging to a bishop of Ephesus who is regarded as a saint.
GAMALIEL גַּמְלִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “benefit of God” in Hebrew. In Acts in the New Testament he is a teacher of Saint Paul.
GEDALIAH גְּדַלְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is great” in Hebrew. This was the name of several characters in the Old Testament, including the governor of Judah appointed by Nebuchadnezzar.
GEMARIAH גְּמַרְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has accomplished” in Hebrew. This was the name of a friend of Jeremiah in the Old Testament.
GERA גֵּרָא m Biblical
Possibly means “a grain” in Hebrew. This was the name of several members of the tribe of Benjamin in the Old Testament.
GERSHOM גֵּרְשֹׁם m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Probably means “exile” in Hebrew, though the Bible explains that it derives from גֵּר שָׁם (ger sham) meaning “a stranger there” (see Exodus 18:3). This is the name of a son of Moses in the Old Testament.
GERSHON גֵּרְשׁוֹן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Variant of GERSHOM. This is the name of a son of Levi in the Old Testament.
GETHSEMANE f Biblical
From Γεθσημανι (Gethsemani), the Greek form of an Aramaic place name meaning “oil vat”. In the New Testament this is the name of the garden where Jesus was arrested, located on the Mount of Olives near Jerusalem.
GIDEON גִּדְעוֹן m Biblical, English, Hebrew
Means “feller, hewer” in Hebrew. Gideon is a hero and judge of the Old Testament. He led the vastly outnumbered Israelites against the Midianites, defeated them, and killed their two kings. In the English-speaking world, Gideon has been used as a given name since the Protestant Reformation, and it was popular among the Puritans.
GILEAD גִּלְעָד m Biblical
From an Old Testament place name meaning “monument of testimony” in Hebrew. This was a mountainous region east of the Jordan River. Besides being a place name, it is also borne by people in the Bible.
GOLIATH גָּלְיָת, Γολιαθ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From Hebrew גָּלְיָת (Golyat), possibly derived from גָּלָה (galah) meaning “uncover, reveal”. This is the name of the giant Philistine who is slain by David in the Old Testament.
GOMER גֹּמֶר m & f Biblical
Means “complete” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a grandson of Noah and the unfaithful wife of the prophet Hosea.
HABAKKUK חֲבַקּוּק m Biblical
From the Hebrew name חֲבַקּוּק (Chavaqquq) meaning “embrace”. In the Old Testament this is one of the twelve minor prophets, the author of the Book of Habakkuk.
HADASSAH הֲדַסָּה f Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
From Hebrew הֲדַס (hadas) meaning “myrtle tree”. In the Old Testament this is the Hebrew name of Queen Esther.
HAGAR הָגָר f Biblical, Biblical German, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means “flight” in Hebrew, though it could also be of unknown Egyptian origin. In the Old Testament she is the concubine of Abraham and the mother of Ishmael, the founder of the Arab people. After Abraham’s wife Sarah finally gave birth to a child, she had Hagar and Ishmael expelled into the desert. However, God heard their crying and saved them.
HAGGAI חַגַּי m Biblical
Means “festive” in Hebrew. This is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament. He was the author of the Book of Haggai, which urges the exiles returning from Babylonia to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem.
HAGGITH חַגִּית f Biblical
Means “festive” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of King David’s wives.
HAM חָם m Biblical
Means “hot, warm” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Ham is one of Noah’s three sons, along with Shem and Japheth. He was the ancestor of the Egyptians and Canaanites.
HANAN (1) חָנָן m Biblical
Means “gracious” in Hebrew. This is the name of several minor characters in the Old Testament.
HANANIAH חֲנַנְיָה m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is gracious” in Hebrew. This name appears frequently in the Old Testament. It is the Hebrew name of Shadrach.
HANNAH חַנָּה f English, Hebrew, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Arabic, Biblical
From the Hebrew name חַנָּה (Channah) meaning “favour” or “grace”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the wife of Elkanah. Her rival was Elkanah’s other wife Peninnah, who had children while Hannah remained barren. After a blessing from Eli she finally became pregnant with Samuel…. [more]
HARAN הָרָן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means “hill, mountain” in Hebrew. This is the name of the brother of Abraham and father of Lot in the Old Testament.
HAVILAH חֲוִילָה f & m Biblical
Probably means “to dance, to circle, to twist” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is both a place name and a masculine personal name.
HAZAEL חֲזָאֵל m Biblical
Means “God sees” in Hebrew. This was the name of a king of Aram in the Old Testament.
HEBER (2) חֶבֶר m Biblical
Means “enclave” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name is borne by a great-grandson of Jacob and also by the husband of Jael.
HELAH חֶלְאָה f Biblical
Means “rust” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name is mentioned as one of the wives of Asher.
HELI (1) m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latin form of ELI (1) used in the Old and New Testament. This form of the name is used in most English versions of the New Testament to refer to the father of Joseph (husband of Mary) in the genealogy in the Gospel of Luke.
HEPHZIBAH חֶפְצִי־בָּה f Biblical
Means “my delight is in her” in Hebrew. She is a queen and the mother of Manasseh in the Old Testament.
HEPZIBAH חֶפְצִי־בָּה f Biblical
Variant of HEPHZIBAH.
HEROD ‘Ηρωιδης, ‘Ηρωδης m Biblical
From the Greek name ‘Ηρωιδης (Heroides), which probably means “song of the hero” from ‘ηρως (heros) “hero, warrior” combined with ωιδη (oide) “song, ode”. This was the name of several rulers of Judea during the period when it was part of the Roman Empire. This includes two who appear in the New Testament: Herod the Great, the king who ordered the slaughter of the children, and his son Herod Antipas, who had John the Baptist beheaded.
HERODIAS ‘Ηρωιδιας, ‘Ηρωδιας f Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Feminine form of HEROD. This was the name of a member of the Herodian ruling family of Judea, a sister of Herod Agrippa and the wife of Herod Antipas. She appears in the New Testament, where she contrives to have her husband Antipas imprison and execute John the Baptist.
HERODION ‘Ηρωιδιων, ‘Ηρωδιων m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Diminutive of the Greek name Heroides (see HEROD). This name is mentioned briefly in Paul’s epistle to the Romans in the New Testament.
HEZEKIAH חִזְקִיָהוּ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name חִזְקִיָהוּ (Chizqiyahu), which means “YAHWEH strengthens”. This name was borne by a powerful king of Judah who reigned in the 8th and 7th centuries BC. Also in the Old Testament, this was the name of an ancestor of the prophet Zephaniah.
HILLEL הִלֵּל m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Derived from Hebrew הלל (halal) meaning “praise”. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament as the father of the judge Abdon.
HIRAH חִירָה m Biblical
Means “splendour” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father-in-law of Judah in the Old Testament.
HIRAM חִירָם m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English
Probably of Phoenician origin, though it could be from Hebrew meaning “exalted brother”. This was the name of a king of Tyre in the Old Testament. As an English given name, Hiram came into use after the Protestant Reformation. In the 17th century the Puritans brought it to America, where it gained some currency.
HIZKIAH חִזְקִיָהוּ m Biblical
Alternate form of the Hebrew name Chizqiyahu (see HEZEKIAH).
HODIAH הוֹדִיָה f Biblical
Means “majesty of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is the name of a wife of Ezra in the Old Testament.
HOSANNA f Biblical
From the Aramaic religious expression הושע נא (Hosha’ na’) meaning “deliver us” in Hebrew. In the New Testament this is exclaimed by those around Jesus when he first enters Jerusalem.
HOSEA הוֹשֵׁעַ m Biblical
Variant transcription of Hoshe’a (see HOSHEA). Hosea is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Hosea. Written in the northern kingdom, it draws parallels between his relationship with his unfaithful wife and the relationship between God and his people.
HOSHEA הוֹשֵׁעַ m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
From the Hebrew name הוֹשֵׁעַ (Hoshe’a) meaning “salvation”. In the Old Testament at Numbers 13:16, Moses gives the spy Hoshea the new name Yehoshu’a (see JOSHUA), which has a related origin. This name was also borne by an 8th-century BC king of Israel, who was the last ruler of that state before it was conquered by Assyria.
HULDA (2) חוּלְדָה f Biblical
Variant of HULDAH.
HULDAH חוּלְדָה f Biblical
Means “weasel, mole” in Hebrew. This name appears in the Old Testament belonging to a prophetess.
HURI חוּרִי m Biblical
Means “linen weaver” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Abihail in the Old Testament.
ICHABOD אִיכָבוֹד m Biblical
Means “no glory” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the grandson of Eli and the son of Phinehas. This name was also used by Washington Irving for Ichabod Crane, the main character in his short story ‘The Legend of Sleepy Hollow’ (1820).
IMMANUEL עִמָּנוּאֵל m German, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Form of EMMANUEL used in most translations of the Old Testament. Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) was a German philosopher who held that duty was of highest importance.
IRA (1) עִירָא m Biblical, English, Hebrew
Means “watchful” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of King David’s priest. As an English Christian given name, Ira began to be used after the Protestant Reformation. In the 17th century the Puritans brought it to America, where remained moderately common into the 20th century.
ISAAC יִצְחָק m English, Spanish, Catalan, Jewish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name יִצְחָק (Yitzchaq) meaning “he will laugh, he will rejoice”, derived from צָחַק (tzachaq) meaning “to laugh”. The Old Testament explains this meaning, by recounting that Abraham laughed when God told him that his aged wife Sarah would become pregnant with Isaac (see Genesis 17:17). When Isaac was a boy, God tested Abraham’s faith by ordering him to sacrifice his son, though an angel prevented the act at the last moment. Isaac went on to become the father of Esau and Jacob with his wife Rebecca…. [more]
ISAIAH יְשַׁעְיָהוּ m English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְשַׁעְיָהוּ (Yesha’yahu) meaning “YAHWEH is salvation”. Isaiah is one of the four major prophets of the Old Testament, supposedly the author of the Book of Isaiah. He was from Jerusalem and probably lived in the 8th century BC, at a time when Assyria threatened the Kingdom of Judah. As an English Christian name, Isaiah was first used after the Protestant Reformation.
ISAIAS m Biblical
Late Latin form of ISAIAH used in some versions of the Bible.
ISCAH יִסְכָּה f Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִסְכָּה (Yiskah) which meant “to behold”. In the Old Testament this is the name of Abraham’s niece, mentioned only briefly. This is the basis of the English name Jessica.
ISHMAEL יִשְׁמָעֵאל m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִשְׁמָעֵאל (Yishma’el) meaning “God will hear”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Abraham. He is the traditional ancestor of the Arab people. Also in the Old Testament, it is borne by a man who assassinates Gedaliah the governor of Judah. The author Herman Melville later used this name for the narrator in his novel ‘Moby-Dick’ (1851).
ISHMERAI יִשְׁמְרַי m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH guards” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
ISHVI יִשְׁוִי m Biblical
Means “he resembles me” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Asher in the Old Testament.
ISRAEL יִשְׂרָאֵל, Ισραηλ m Jewish, English, Biblical, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name יִשְׂרָאֵל (Yisra’el) meaning “God contended”. In the Old Testament Israel (who was formerly named Jacob; see Genesis 32:28) wrestles with an angel. The ancient and modern states of Israel took their names from him.
ISSACHAR יִשָּׂשׁכָר, Ισσαχαρ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Possibly means “man of hire” or “there is reward”, from Hebrew שָׁכַר (shakhar) “hire, wage, reward”. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the twelve sons of Jacob and Leah and the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. A justification for the name’s meaning is given in Genesis 30:18.
ITHAI אִתַּי, אִיתַי m Biblical
From a Hebrew name spelled variously אִתַּי (‘Ittay) or אִיתַי (‘Itay) meaning “with me”. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of King David’s mighty men.
ITHAMAR אִיתָמָר, Ιθαμαρ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name אִיתָמָר (‘Itamar) meaning “palm island”. This is the name of a son of Aaron in the Old Testament.
ITHIEL אִיתִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “God is with me” in Hebrew. This was the name of a minor character in the Old Testament.
ITTAI אִתַּי, אִיתַי m Biblical
Variant of ITHAI.
IVAH עִוָּה f Biblical
From the name of a district of Babylon, mentioned in the Old Testament.
JAALA יַעֲלָה m Biblical
Means “wild goat” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a servant of Solomon.
JAASAU יַעֲשָׂי m Biblical
Means “they will do” in Hebrew. This was the name of a descendant of Bani in the Old Testament.
JABEZ יַעְבֵץ m Biblical
Means “sorrow” in Hebrew. This is the name of a character in the Old Testament who is blessed by God.
JABIN יָבִין m Biblical
Means “perceptive” in Hebrew. This name was borne by two kings of Hazor in the Old Testament.
JACHIN יָכִין m Biblical
Means “he establishes” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Simeon in the Old Testament.
JACOB יַעֲקֹב m English, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Jewish, Biblical
From the Latin Iacobus, which was from the Greek Ιακωβος (Iakobos), which was from the Hebrew name יַעֲקֹב (Ya’aqov). In the Old Testament Jacob (later called Israel) is the son of Isaac and Rebecca and the father of the twelve founders of the twelve tribes of Israel. He was born holding his twin brother Esau’s heel, and his name is explained as meaning “holder of the heel” or “supplanter”, because he twice deprived his brother of his rights as the firstborn son (see Genesis 27:36). Other theories claim that it is in fact derived from a hypothetical name like יַעֲקֹבְאֵל (Ya’aqov’el) meaning “may God protect”…. [more]
JADA (2) יָדָע m Biblical
Means “he knows” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Jada is a son of Onam.
JADON יָדוֹן m Biblical
Possibly means either “thankful” or “he will judge” in Hebrew. This name is borne by a minor character in the Old Testament.
JAEL יָעֵל f Biblical
From the Hebrew name יָעֵל (Ya’el) meaning “ibex, mountain goat”. This name appears in the Old Testament belonging to the wife of Heber the Kenite. After Sisera, the captain of the Canaanite army, was defeated in battle by Deborah and Barak he took refuge in Heber’s tent. When he fell asleep Jael killed him by hammering a tent peg into his head.
JAHEL יָעֵל f Biblical
Variant of JAEL.
JAHLEEL יַחְלְאֵל m Biblical
Means “God waits” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
JAHZEEL יַחְצְאֵל m Biblical
Means “God apportions” in Hebrew. This was the son of Naphtali in the Old Testament.
JAIR יָאִיר m Biblical
Means “he shines” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a son of Manasseh and one of the ruling judges of the Israelites.
JAIRUS m Biblical
From Ιαιρος (Iairos), the Greek form of JAIR used in the New Testament, where it belongs to the father of a young girl brought back to life by Jesus.
JAMES m English, Biblical
English form of the Late Latin name Iacomus which was derived from Ιακωβος (Iakobos), the New Testament Greek form of the Hebrew name Ya’aqov (see JACOB). This was the name of two apostles in the New Testament. The first was Saint James the Greater, the apostle John’s brother, who was beheaded under Herod Agrippa in the Book of Acts. The second was James the Lesser, son of Alphaeus. Another James (known as James the Just) is also mentioned in the Bible as being the brother of Jesus…. [more]
JAMIN יָמִין m Biblical
Means “right hand” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Simeon.
JAPHETH יֶפֶת m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יֶפֶת (Yefet) meaning “enlarged”. In the Old Testament he is one of the three sons of Noah, along with Shem and Ham. He was the ancestor of the peoples of Europe and Northern Asia.
JARAH יֲעְרָה m Biblical
Means “honeycomb” and “honeysuckle” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a descendant of Saul.
JARED יָרֶד, יֶרֶד m English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יָרֶד (Yared) or יֶרֶד (Yered) meaning “descent”. This is the name of a close descendant of Adam in the Old Testament. It has been used as an English name since the Protestant Reformation, and it was popularized in the 1960s by the character Jarrod Barkley on the television series ‘The Big Valley’.
JASON Ιασων m English, French, Greek Mythology (Anglicized), Biblical
From the Greek name Ιασων (Iason), which was derived from Greek ιασθαι (iasthai) “to heal”. In Greek mythology Jason was the leader of the Argonauts. After his uncle Pelias overthrew his father Aeson as king of Iolcos, Jason went in search of the Golden Fleece in order to win back the throne. During his journeys he married the sorceress Medea, who helped him gain the fleece and kill his uncle, but who later turned against him when he fell in love with another woman…. [more]
JAVAN יָוָן m Biblical
Means “Greece” in Hebrew, possibly related to ION (2). In the Old Testament this is the name of a grandson of Noah and the ancestor of the Greek peoples.
JECONIAH יְכָנְיָה m Biblical
Means “established by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is another name (with the same meaning) of the Judean king Jehoiachin.
JEDIDAH יְדִידָה f Biblical
Means “beloved” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the wife of King Amon of Judah and the mother of Josiah.
JEDIDIAH יְדִידְיָה m Biblical
Means “beloved of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is a name given to Solomon by Nathan.
JEHIEL יְחִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “God lives” in Hebrew. This is the name of several people in the Old Testament, including one of King David’s lute players.
JEHOASH יְהוֹאָשׁ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹאָשׁ (Yeho’ash), an extended form of יוֹאָשׁ (see JOASH). According to the Old Testament, this was the name of a king of Israel. He probably reigned in the 8th century BC.
JEHOHANAN יְהוֹחָנָן m Biblical
From the Hebrew name Yehochanan, an extended form of Yochanan (see JOHN). It is borne by a few minor characters in the English Old Testament.
JEHOIACHIN יְהוֹיָכִין m Biblical
Means “established by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a king of Judah. Also known as Jeconiah, he was imprisoned in Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar after a brief reign in the early 6th century BC.
JEHOIAKIM יְהוֹיָקִים m Biblical
Means “raised by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a king of Judah. He lived in the 7th century BC, and was the son of Josiah and the father of Jehoiachin.
JEHONATHAN יְהוֹנָתָן m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹנָתָן (Yehonatan), the full form of JONATHAN. This is the name of a few minor characters in the Old Testament.
JEHORAM יְהוֹרָם m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹרָם (Yehoram) which meant “exalted by YAHWEH”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a king of Judah and a king of Israel, both of whom ruled at about the same time in the 9th century BC.
JEHOSHAPHAT יְהוֹשָׁפָט m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has judged” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the fourth king of Judah, noted for having a generally peaceful and prosperous reign.
JEHU יְהוּא m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is he” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a king of Israel. He ruled in the 9th century BC, coming to power by overthrowing Jehoram. This was also the name of a prophet during the reign of the king Baasha.
JEHUDI יְהוּדִי m Biblical
Means “Jew” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a servant of king Jehoiakim.
JEMIMA יְמִימָה f Biblical, English
Means “dove” in Hebrew. This was the oldest of the three daughters of Job in the Old Testament. As an English name, Jemima first became common during the Puritan era.
JEPHTHA יִפְתַח m Biblical
Variant of JEPHTHAH.
JEPHTHAH יִפְתַח m Biblical
Means “he opens” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name belongs to a ruling judge. He successfully defended Israel from the Ammonites, but was then obliged to sacrifice his daughter because of a vow he had made.
JEREMIAH יִרְמְיָהוּ m English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִרְמְיָהוּ (Yirmiyahu) which meant “YAHWEH has uplifted”. This is the name of one of the major prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Jeremiah and the Book of Lamentations (supposedly). He lived to see the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem in the 6th century BC…. [more]
JEREMIEL m Biblical
Means “God uplifts” in Hebrew. Jeremiel is named as an archangel in the apocryphal books of Esdras and Enoch in the Old Testament.
JEREMY m English, Biblical
Medieval English form of JEREMIAH, and the form used in some English versions of the New Testament.
JERIAH יְרִיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “taught by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Jeriah is a descendant of Hebron.
JERICHO יְרֵחוֹ m Biblical
From the name of a city in Israel which is mentioned several times in the Old Testament. The meaning of the city’s name is uncertain, but it may be related to the Hebrew word יָרֵחַ (yareach) meaning “moon”, or otherwise to the Hebrew word רֵיחַ (reyach) meaning “fragrant”.
JEROBOAM יָרָבְעָם m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יָרָבְעָם (Yarav’am) meaning “the people contend”. According to the Old Testament, this was the name of the leader of the revolt against King Rehoboam of Israel. The kingdom was split into Judah in the south and Israel in the north, with Jeroboam becoming the first king of the latter.
JERUSHA יְרוּשָׁה f Biblical
From Hebrew יָרַשׁ (yarash) meaning “possession”. In the Old Testament she is the wife of King Uzziah of Judah and the mother of Jotham.
JESCHA f Biblical
Form of ISCAH found in the medieval Wycliffe Bible. This name was probably the basis for Shakespeare’s created name Jessica.
JESSE יִשַׁי m English, Dutch, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִשַׁי (Yishay) which possibly means “gift”. In the Old Testament Jesse is the father of King David. It began to be used as an English given name after the Protestant Reformation. A famous bearer was Jesse James (1847-1882), an American outlaw who held up banks and stagecoaches. He was eventually shot by a fellow gang member for a reward. Another famous bearer was the American athlete Jesse Owens (1913-1980), whose real name was James Cleveland (or J. C.) Owens.
JESUS m Theology, Biblical
English form of Ιησους (Iesous), which was the Greek form of the Aramaic name יֵשׁוּעַ (Yeshu’a). Yeshu’a is itself a contracted form of Yehoshu’a (see JOSHUA). Yeshua ben Yoseph, better known as Jesus Christ, was the central figure of the New Testament and the source of the Christian religion. The four gospels state that he was the son of God and the Virgin Mary who fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies of the Messiah. He preached for three years before being crucified in Jerusalem.
JETHRO יִתְרוֹ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יִתְרוֹ (Yitro), which was derived from the Hebrew word יֶתֶר (yeter) meaning “abundance”. According to the Old Testament, Jethro was a Midianite priest who sheltered Moses when he fled Egypt. He was the father of Zipporah, who became Moses’s wife. A famous bearer of the name was Jethro Tull (1674-1741), an English inventor and agriculturist.
JEZEBEL אִיזֶבֶל f Biblical
From the Hebrew אִיזֶבֶל (‘Izevel) which probably means “where is the prince?”, a ritual question spoken in ceremonies honouring Baal. Alternatively, it may mean “not exalted”. In the Old Testament Jezebel is the evil wife of Ahab, king of Israel. After she was thrown from a window to her death her body was eaten by dogs, fulfilling Elijah’s prophecy.
JOAB יוֹאָב m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is father” in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament, he was the commander of King David’s army. In separate incidents he killed both Abner and Absalom. When Solomon came to power he was executed.
JOANNA f English, Polish, Biblical
English and Polish form of Latin Iohanna, which was derived from Greek Ιωαννα (Ioanna), the feminine form of Ioannes (see JOHN). This is the spelling used in the English New Testament, where it belongs to a follower of Jesus who is regarded as a saint. In the Middle Ages in England it was used as a Latinized form of Joan (the usual feminine form of John) and it became common as a given name in the 19th century.
JOASH יוֹאָשׁ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יוֹאָשׁ (Yo’ash) which possibly meant either “fire of YAHWEH” or “YAHWEH has given”. In the Old Testament this name was borne by several characters including the father of Gideon, a king of Judah, and a son of King Ahab of Israel.
JOB אִיּוֹב m Biblical, Biblical French, Dutch
From the Hebrew name אִיּוֹב (‘Iyyov) which means “persecuted, hated”. In the Book of Job in the Old Testament he is a righteous man who is tested by God, enduring many tragedies and hardships while struggling to remain faithful.
JOCHEBED יוֹכֶבֶד f Biblical
From the Hebrew name יוֹכֶבֶד (Yokheved) which meant “YAHWEH is glory”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the mother of Miriam, Aaron and Moses.

JOEL יוֹאֵל m English, Spanish, Portuguese, Swedish, Finnish, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יוֹאֵל (Yo’el) meaning “YAHWEH is God”. Joel is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Joel, which describes a plague of locusts. In England, it was first used as a Christian name after the Protestant Reformation.
JOHANAN יוֹחָנָן m Biblical
Form of Yochanan (see JOHN) used in the English Old Testament. It was the name of a military leader in the time of the prophet Jeremiah.
JOHN m English, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Biblical
English form of Iohannes, the Latin form of the Greek name Ιωαννης (Ioannes), itself derived from the Hebrew name יוֹחָנָן (Yochanan) meaning “YAHWEH is gracious”. The Hebrew form occurs in the Old Testament (spelled Johanan or Jehohanan in the English version), but this name owes its popularity to two New Testament characters, both highly revered saints. The first is John the Baptist, a Jewish ascetic who is considered the forerunner of Jesus. He baptized Jesus and was later executed by Herod Antipas. The second is the apostle John, who is traditionally regarded as the author of the fourth gospel and Revelation. With the apostles Peter and James (his brother), he was part of the inner circle of Jesus…. [more]
JOKTAN יָקְטָן m Biblical
Means “small” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Eber in the Old Testament.
JONAH יוֹנָה m English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יוֹנָה (Yonah) meaning “dove”. This was the name of a prophet swallowed by a fish, as told in the Old Testament Book of Jonah. Jonah was commanded by God to preach in Nineveh, but instead fled by boat. After being caught in a storm, the other sailors threw Jonah overboard, at which point he was swallowed. He emerged from the fish alive and repentant three days later…. [more]
JONAS (2) Ιωνας m Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Biblical
From Ιωνας (Ionas), the Greek form of JONAH. This spelling is used in some English translations of the New Testament.
JONATHAN יוֹנָתָן m English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, French, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹנָתָן (Yehonatan),contracted to יוֹנָתָן (Yonatan), meaning “YAHWEH has given”. According to the Old Testament, Jonathan was the eldest son of Saul. His relationship with his father was strained due to his close friendship with his father’s rival David. Along with Saul he was killed in battle with the Philistines…. [more]
JORAM יוֹרָם m Biblical
Contracted form of Yehoram (see JEHORAM). This name belongs to several minor characters in the Old Testament, as well as being another name for the kings Jehoram of Israel and Jehoram of Judah.
JOSAPHAT m Biblical
Contracted form of JEHOSHAPHAT used in some English versions of the New Testament.
JOSEPH יוֹסֵף m English, French, German, Biblical
From Ioseph, the Latin form of Greek Ιωσηφ (Ioseph), which was from the Hebrew name יוֹסֵף (Yosef) meaning “he will add”. In the Old Testament Joseph is the eleventh son of Jacob and the first with his wife Rachel. Because he was the favourite of his father, his older brothers sent him to Egypt and told their father that he had died. In Egypt, Joseph became an advisor to the pharaoh, and was eventually reconciled with his brothers when they came to Egypt during a famine. This name also occurs in the New Testament, belonging to Saint Joseph the husband of Mary, and to Joseph of Arimathea…. [more]
JOSES Ιωσης m Biblical
From Ιωσης (Ioses), a Greek variant of JOSEPH used in the New Testament to distinguish Joseph the brother of James from the many other characters of that name.
JOSHUA יְהוֹשֻׁעַ m English, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוֹשֻׁעַ (Yehoshu’a) meaning “YAHWEH is salvation”. As told in the Old Testament, Joshua was a companion of Moses. He went up Mount Sinai with Moses when he received the Ten Commandments from God, and later he was one of the twelve spies sent into Canaan. After Moses died Joshua succeeded him as leader of the Israelites and he led the conquest of Canaan. His original name was Hoshea…. [more]
JOSIAH יֹאשִׁיָהוּ m Biblical, English
From the Hebrew name יֹאשִׁיָהוּ (Yoshiyahu) meaning “YAHWEH supports”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a king of Judah famous for his religious reforms. He was killed fighting the Egyptians at Megiddo in the 7th century BC. In England this name came into use after the Protestant Reformation.
JOSIAS m Biblical
Latinized form of JOSIAH used in some English versions of the Old Testament.
JOTHAM יוֹתָם m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH is upright” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a son of Gideon and a king of Judah.
JUBAL יוּבָל m Biblical
Means “stream” in Hebrew. This name is mentioned in Genesis in the Old Testament as belonging to the first person to be a musician.
JUDAH יְהוּדָה m Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוּדָה (Yehudah), probably derived from יָדָה (yadah) meaning “praise”. In the Old Testament Judah is the fourth of the twelve sons of Jacob by Leah, and the ancestor of the tribe of Judah. An explanation for his name is given in Genesis 29:35. His tribe eventually formed the Kingdom of Judah in the south of Israel. King David and Jesus were among the descendants of him and his wife Tamar. This name was also borne by Judah Maccabee, the Jewish priest who revolted against Seleucid rule in the 2nd century BC, as told in the Books of Maccabees…. [more]
JUDAS Ιουδας m Biblical
From Ιουδας (Ioudas), the Greek form of JUDAH. This is the name of several characters in the New Testament including the infamous Judas Iscariot, the apostle who betrayed Jesus to the Jewish authorities in exchange for money.
JUDE (1) m English, Biblical
Variant of JUDAS. It is used in many English versions of the New Testament to denote the second apostle named Judas, in order to distinguish him from Judas Iscariot. He was supposedly the author of the Epistle of Jude. In the English-speaking world, Jude has occasionally been used as a given name since the time of the Protestant Reformation.
JUDITH יְהוּדִית f English, Jewish, French, German, Spanish, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוּדִית (Yehudit) meaning “woman from Judea”, Judea being an ancient region in Israel. In the Old Testament Judith is one of the Hittite wives of Esau. This is also the name of the main character of the apocryphal Book of Judith. She killed Holofernes, an invading Assyrian commander, by beheading him in his sleep…. [more]
JULIA f English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Spanish, Polish, Finnish, Russian, Ukrainian, Ancient Roman, Biblical
Feminine form of the Roman family name JULIUS. Among the notable women from this family were Julia Augusta (also known as Livia Drusilla), the wife of Emperor Augustus, and Julia the Elder, the daughter of Augustus and the wife of Tiberius. A person by this name has a brief mention in the New Testament. It was also borne by a few early saints and martyrs, including the patron saint of Corsica. Additionally, Shakespeare used it in his comedy ‘The Two Gentlemen of Verona’ (1594)…. [more]
JUNIA f Biblical, Ancient Roman
Feminine form of JUNIUS. This was the name of an early Christian mentioned in the New Testament (there is some debate about whether the name belongs to a man or a woman).
KANDAKE Κανδακη f Biblical, Biblical Greek
Biblical Greek form of CANDACE.
KEMUEL קְמוּאֵל m Biblical
From the Hebrew name קְמוּאֵל (Qemu’el) meaning “raised by God”. This is the name of a nephew of Abraham in the Old Testament.
KENAN קֵינָן m Biblical
Possibly means “possession” in Hebrew. He is a son of Enosh and a great-grandson of Adam in the Old Testament.
KENANIAH כְּנַנְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH establishes” in Hebrew. This was the name of two minor Old Testament characters.
KEREN-HAPPUCH קֶרֶן הַפּוּך f Biblical
Means “horn of antimony” in Hebrew. Antimony is a substance that was formerly used as an eye cosmetic (eyeshadow). A hollowed animal horn could have been used to store this material. Keren-Happuch is the name of the third daughter of Job in the Old Testament.
KETURAH קְטוּרָה f Biblical
Means “incense” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament she is Abraham’s wife after Sarah dies.
KEZIA קְצִיעָה f Biblical
Variant of KEZIAH.
KEZIAH קְצִיעָה f Biblical
From the Hebrew name קְצִיעָה (Qetzi’ah) meaning “cassia, cinnamon”, from the name of the spice tree. In the Old Testament she is a daughter of Job.
LABAN לָבָן m Biblical
Derived from Hebrew לָבָן (lavan) meaning “white”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Rachel and Leah.
LAEL לָאֵל m Biblical
Means “of God” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Eliasaph in the Old Testament.
LAMECH לָמֶך m Biblical
Possibly means “to make low” in Hebrew. This is the name of two characters in Genesis in the Old Testament: a descendant of Cain and the father of Noah.
LAZARUS Λαζαρος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of Λαζαρος (Lazaros), a Greek form of ELEAZAR used in the New Testament. Lazarus was a man from Bethany, the brother of Mary and Martha, who was restored to life by Jesus.
LEAH לֵאָה f English, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
From the Hebrew name לֵאָה (Le’ah) which was probably derived from the Hebrew word לְאָה (le’ah) meaning “weary”. Alternatively it might derive from a Chaldean name meaning “mistress” or “ruler” in Akkadian. In the Old Testament Leah is the first wife of Jacob and the mother of seven of his children. Jacob’s other wife was Leah’s sister Rachel. Although this name was used by Jews in the Middle Ages, it was not typical as an English Christian name until after the Protestant Reformation, being common among the Puritans.
LEHI לֶחִי m Biblical, Mormon
From an Old Testament place name meaning “jawbone” in Hebrew. It is also used in the Book of Mormon as the name of a prophet.
LEMUEL לְמוּאֵל m Biblical, Mormon, Biblical Hebrew
Means “belonging to God” in Hebrew. This was the name of a king briefly mentioned in Proverbs in the Old Testament. In the Book of Mormon it is the name of a son of Lehi and Sariah. It is also borne by the hero of Jonathan Swift’s novel ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ (1726).
LEVI לֵוִי m Hebrew, English, Dutch, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Possibly means “joined, attached” in Hebrew. As told in the Old Testament, Levi was the third son of Jacob and Leah, and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of the Israelites, known as the Levites. This was the tribe that formed the priestly class of the Israelites. The brothers Moses and Aaron were members. In the New Testament this is another name for the apostle Matthew. As an English Christian name, Levi came into use after the Protestant Reformation.
LOIS (1) Λωις f English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Possibly derived from Greek λωιων (loion) meaning “more desirable” or “better”. Lois is mentioned in the New Testament as the mother of Eunice and the grandmother of Timothy. As an English name, it came into use after the Protestant Reformation. In fiction, this is the name of the girlfriend of the comic book hero Superman.
LOT (1) לוֹט m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “covering, veil” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a nephew of Abraham. Before Sodom was destroyed by God, he was directed to flee the city without looking back. However, his wife looked back on the destruction and was turned into a pillar of salt.
LUCIUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical, English
Roman praenomen, or given name, which was derived from Latin lux “light”. This was the most popular of the praenomina. Two Etruscan kings of early Rome had this name as well as several prominent later Romans, including Lucius Annaeus Seneca (known simply as Seneca), a statesman, philosopher, orator and tragedian. The name is mentioned briefly in the New Testament belonging to a Christian in Antioch. It was also borne by three popes, including the 3rd-century Saint Lucius. Despite this, the name was not regularly used in the Christian world until after the Renaissance.
LUKE m English, Biblical
English form of the Greek name Λουκας (Loukas) which meant “from Lucania”, Lucania being a region in southern Italy (of uncertain meaning). Luke was a doctor who travelled in the company of the apostle Paul. According to tradition, he was the author of the third gospel and Acts in the New Testament. He was probably of Greek ethnicity. He is considered a saint by many Christian denominations…. [more]
LYDIA Λυδια f English, German, Biblical, Old Church Slavic, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “from Lydia” in Greek. Lydia was a region on the west coast of Asia Minor, said to be named for the legendary king LYDOS. In the New Testament this is the name of a woman converted to Christianity by Saint Paul. In the modern era the name has been in use since the Protestant Reformation.
MADAI מָדַי m Biblical
Means “Medes” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Japheth. He was the ancestor of the Medes, an ancient people related to the Persians.
MAGDALENE Μαγδαληνη f German, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From a title which meant “of Magdala”. Mary Magdalene, a character in the New Testament, was named thus because she was from Magdala – a village on the Sea of Galilee whose name meant “tower” in Hebrew. She was cleaned of evil spirits by Jesus and then remained with him during his ministry, witnessing the crucifixion and the resurrection. She was a popular saint in the Middle Ages, and the name became common then. In England it is traditionally rendered Madeline, while Magdalene or Magdalen is the learned form.
MAHALAH מַחְלָה m Biblical
Variant of MAHLAH used in the King James Version of the Old Testament.
MAHALATH מָחֲלַת f Biblical
From the Hebrew name מָחֲלַת (Machalat) meaning “lyre”. In the Old Testament she is the daughter of Ishmael and the wife of Esau.
MAHALI מַחְלִי m Biblical
Variant of MAHLI.
MAHLAH מַחְלָה f & m Biblical
From the Hebrew name מַחְלָה (Machlah), possibly from חָלָה (chalah) meaning “weak” or “sick”. This name is used in the Old Testament as both a feminine and masculine name. In some versions of the Bible the masculine name is spelled Mahalah.
MAHLI מַחְלִי m Biblical
From the Hebrew name מַחְלִי (Machliy), possibly meaning “weak” or “sick”. This was the name of two characters mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
MALACHI מַלְאָכִי m Hebrew, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew מַלְאָכִי (Mal’akhiy) meaning “my messenger” or “my angel”. This is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Malachi, which some claim foretells the coming of Christ. In England the name came into use after the Protestant Reformation.
MANASSEH מְנַשֶּׁה m Biblical
Means “causing to forget” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the oldest son of Joseph and Asenath and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. It was also borne by a 7th-century BC king of Judah, condemned in the bible for allowing the worship of other gods.
MANASSES Μανασσης m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Form of MANASSEH used in the Greek and Latin Bible. It is also the form used in some English versions of the New Testament.
MARA (1) מָרָא f Biblical
Means “bitter” in Hebrew. This is a name taken by Naomi in the Old Testament (see Ruth 1:20).
MARK m English, Russian, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Biblical
Form of MARCUS. Saint Mark was the author of the second gospel in the New Testament. Though the author’s identity is not certain, some traditions hold him to be the same person as the John Mark who appears in the Book of Acts. He is the patron saint of Venice, where he is supposedly buried. Though in use during the Middle Ages, Mark was not common in the English-speaking world until the 19th century, when it began to be used alongside the classical form Marcus…. [more]
MARTHA Μαρθα f English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, German, Greek, Biblical, Old Church Slavic, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From Aramaic מַרְתָּא (marta’) meaning “the lady, the mistress”, feminine form of מַר (mar) “master”. In the New Testament this is the name of the sister of Lazarus and Mary of Bethany (who is sometimes identified with Mary Magdalene). She was a witness to Jesus restoring her dead brother to life…. [more]
MARY f English, Biblical
Usual English form of Maria, the Latin form of the New Testament Greek names Μαριαμ (Mariam) and Μαρια (Maria) – the spellings are interchangeable – which were from Hebrew מִרְיָם (Miryam), a name borne by the sister of Moses in the Old Testament. The meaning is not known for certain, but there are several theories including “sea of bitterness”, “rebelliousness”, and “wished for child”. However it was most likely originally an Egyptian name, perhaps derived in part from mry “beloved” or mr “love”…. [more]
MATTAN מַתָּן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “gift” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Shephatiah in the Old Testament.
MATTANIAH מַתַּנְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “gift of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This was the original name of Zedekiah, a king of Judah, in the Old Testament.
MATTHAN Ματθαν m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Form of MATTAN used in the Greek and Latin Old Testament. This form of the name is also used in English versions of the New Testament, being borne by the great-grandfather of Jesus.
MATTHEW m English, Biblical
English form of Ματθαιος (Matthaios), which was a Greek form of the Hebrew name מַתִּתְיָהוּ (Mattityahu) meaning “gift of YAHWEH”. Matthew, also called Levi, was one of the twelve apostles. He was a tax collector, and supposedly the author of the first gospel in the New Testament. He is considered a saint in many Christian traditions. The variant Matthias also occurs in the New Testament belonging to a separate apostle. The name appears in the Old Testament as Mattithiah…. [more]
MATTHIAS Ματθιας m German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, French, Dutch, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Variant of Matthaios (see MATTHEW) which appears in the New Testament as the name of the apostle chosen to replace the traitor Judas Iscariot. This was also the name of kings of Hungary, including Matthias I who made important reforms to the kingdom in the 15th century.
MATTITHIAH מַתִּתְיָהוּ m Biblical
Form of Mattityahu (see MATTHEW) used in the English Old Testament, where it belongs to a few minor characters.
MEDAD מֵידָד m Biblical
Means “love” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Medad is one of the elders who prophesizes in the camp of the Israelites after the flight from Egypt.
MEHETABEL מְהֵיטַבְאֵל f Biblical
From the Hebrew name מְהֵיטַבְאֵל (Meheitav’el) meaning “God makes happy”. This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament.
MEHITABEL מְהֵיטַבְאֵל f Biblical
Variant of MEHETABEL.
MELECH מֶלֶך m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “king” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Micah (not the prophet).
MENAHEM מְנַחֵם m Biblical, Hebrew
From the Hebrew name מְנַחֵם (Menachem) meaning “comforter”. This was the name of a king of Israel, appearing in the Old Testament. His reign was noted for its brutality.
MERAB (1) מֵרַב f Biblical
Means “abundant” in Hebrew. This was the name of a daughter of Saul in the Old Testament.
MERARI מְרָרִי m Biblical
Means “bitter” in Hebrew. This was the name of the youngest son of Levi in the Old Testament.
MESHACH מֵישַׁך m Biblical
Possibly means “who is what Aku is?” in Akkadian, Aku being the name of the Babylonian god of the moon. In the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament this is the Babylonian name of Mishael, one of the three men cast into a blazing furnace but saved from harm by God.
MESHULLAM מְשֻׁלָּם m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means either “paid for” or “friend” in Hebrew. This was the name of many characters in the Old Testament.
METHUSELAH מְתוּשֶׁלַח m Biblical
Means “man of the dart” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the father of Lamech and the grandfather of Noah. He lived to age 969, making him the longest-lived person in the Bible.
MICAH מִיכָה m Biblical, English
Contracted form of MICAIAH. Micah is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament. He authored the Book of Micah, which alternates between prophesies of doom and prophesies of restoration. It was occasionally used as an English given name by the Puritans after the Protestant Reformation, but it did not become common until the end of the 20th century.
MICAIAH מִיכָיְהוּ m & f Biblical
Means “who is like YAHWEH?” in Hebrew. This name occurs in the Old Testament belonging to both males and females.
MICAJAH מִיכָיְהוּ m Biblical
Variant of MICAIAH.
MICHAEL מִיכָאֵל, Μιχαηλ m English, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Czech, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name מִיכָאֵל (Mikha’el) meaning “who is like God?”. This is a rhetorical question, implying no person is like God. Michael is one of the seven archangels in Hebrew tradition and the only one identified as an archangel in the Bible. In the Book of Daniel in the Old Testament he is named as a protector of Israel. In the Book of Revelation in the New Testament he is portrayed as the leader of heaven’s armies in the war against Satan, and is thus considered the patron saint of soldiers in Christianity…. [more]
MICHAL (2) מִיכַל f Biblical, Hebrew
Possibly means “brook” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament she is a daughter of Saul. She was married to David, but after David fled from Saul he remarried her to someone else. Later, when David became king, he ordered her returned to him.
MILKA (2) מִלְכָּה f Biblical
Means “queen” in Hebrew. This name appears in the Old Testament belonging to both the wife of Nahor and the daughter of Zelophehad.
MIRIAM מִרְיָם f Hebrew, English, German, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Original Hebrew form of MARY. It is used in the Old Testament, where it belongs to the elder sister of Moses and Aaron. She watched over the infant Moses as the pharaoh’s daughter drew him from the Nile. The name has long been popular among Jews, and it has been used as an English Christian name since the Protestant Reformation.
MNASON Μνασων m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Ancient Greek
Possibly means “reminding” in Greek. In Acts in the New Testament Paul stays in Jerusalem with a man named Mnason, a Jew who was originally from Cyprus.
MOAB מוֹאָב m Biblical
Means “of his father” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Lot. He was the ancestor of the Moabites, a people who lived in the region called Moab to the east of Israel.
MORDECAI מָרְדֳּכַי m Biblical, Hebrew
Means “servant of MARDUK” in Persian. In the Old Testament Mordecai is the cousin and foster father of Esther. He thwarted a plot to kill the Persian king, though he made an enemy of the king’s chief advisor Haman.
MORIAH מֹרִיָה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, English (Modern)
Possibly means “seen by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is a place name in the Old Testament, both the land where Abraham is to sacrifice Isaac and the mountain upon which Solomon builds the temple. They may be the same place. Since the 1980s it has occasionally been used as a feminine given name in America.
MOSES מֹשֶׁה m English, Jewish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name מֹשֶׁה (Mosheh) which is most likely derived from Egyptian mes meaning “son”, but could also possibly mean “deliver” in Hebrew. The meaning suggested in the Old Testament of “drew out” from Hebrew משה (mashah) is probably an invented etymology (see Exodus 2:10). The biblical Moses was drawn out of the Nile by the pharaoh’s daughter and adopted into the royal family, at a time when the Israelites were slaves in Egypt. With his brother Aaron he demanded the pharaoh release the Israelites, which was only done after God sent ten plagues upon Egypt. Moses led the people across the Red Sea and to Mount Sinai, where he received the Ten Commandments from God. After 40 years of wandering in the desert the people reached Canaan, the Promised Land, but Moses died just before entering it…. [more]
NAAMAH נַעֲמָה f Biblical, Hebrew
Means “pleasant” in Hebrew. This name is borne in the Old Testament by both a daughter of Lamech and a wife of Solomon. Some later Jewish texts give Naamah as the name of Noah’s wife, even though she is not named in the Old Testament.
NADAB נָדָב, Ναδαβ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “generous” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Aaron in the Old Testament. He was consumed by flames and killed when he offered unauthorized fire to God. It was also the name of the second king of Israel.
NAHOR נָחוֹר m Biblical
Means “snorting” in Hebrew. Nahor is the name of both the grandfather and a brother of Abraham in the Old Testament.
NAHUM נַחוּם m Biblical
Means “comforter” in Hebrew. Nahum is one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament. He authored the Book of Nahum in which the downfall of Nineveh is foretold.
NAOMI (1) נָעֳמִי f English, Hebrew, Biblical
From the Hebrew name נָעֳמִי (Na’omiy) meaning “pleasantness”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the mother-in-law of Ruth. After the death of her husband and sons, she returned to Bethlehem with Ruth. There she declared that her name should be Mara (see Ruth 1:20)…. [more]
NAPHTALI נַפְתָלִי m Biblical
Means “my struggle, my strife” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is a son of Jacob by Rachel’s servant Bilhah, and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel.
NARCISSUS Ναρκισσος m Greek Mythology (Latinized), Late Roman, Biblical
Latinized form of Greek Ναρκισσος (Narkissos), possibly derived from ναρκη (narke) meaning “sleep, numbness”. Narkissos was a beautiful youth in Greek mythology who stared at his own reflection for so long that he eventually died and was turned into the narcissus flower…. [more]
NATHAN נָתָן, Ναθαν m English, French, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name נָתָן (Natan) meaning “he gave”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a prophet during the reign of King David. He chastised David for his adultery with Bathsheba and for the death of Uriah the Hittite. Later he championed Solomon as David’s successor. This was also the name of a son of David and Bathsheba…. [more]
NATHANAEL נְתַנְאֵל, Ναθαναηλ m Biblical, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name נְתַנְאֵל (Netan’el) meaning “God has given”. It is borne by several minor characters in the Old Testament, typically spelled Nethanel or Nethaneel. In the New Testament this is the name of an apostle, probably another name of the apostle called Bartholomew.
NATHANIEL נְתַנְאֵל m English, Biblical
Variant of NATHANAEL. It has been regularly used in the English-speaking world since the Protestant Reformation. This has been the most popular spelling, even though the spelling Nathanael is found in most versions of the New Testament. The American writer Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864), author of ‘The Scarlet Letter’, was a famous bearer of this name.
NEBO m Biblical
Form of NABU used in the Old Testament.
NEBUCHADNEZZAR נְבוּכַדְנֶאצֲּר m Ancient Near Eastern (Anglicized), Biblical
From the Akkadian name Nabu-kudurri-usur meaning “NABU preserve my firstborn son”. This name was borne by a 12th-century BC king of the Babylonian Empire. It was also borne by a 6th-century BC king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire. He captured Jerusalem, and ultimately destroyed the city’s temple and deported many of its citizens, as told in the Old Testament.
NEHEMIAH נְחֶמְיָה m Biblical
Means “comforted by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. According to the Book of Nehemiah in the Old Testament he was a leader of the Jews who was responsible for the rebuilding of Jerusalem after the return from the Babylonian captivity.
NEKODA נְקוֹדָא m Biblical
Means “marked” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the head of a family of temple servants.
NEREUS Νηρευς m Greek Mythology, Ancient Greek, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Derived from Greek νηρος (neros) meaning “water”. In Greek myth this was the name of a god of the sea, the father of the Nereids. It is mentioned briefly in the New Testament, belonging to a Christian in Rome. This was also the name of a Roman saint of the 1st century, a member of the army, who was martyred with his companion Achilleus because they refused to execute Christians.
NERIAH נֵרִיָה m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “lamp of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is the name of the father of Baruch in the Old Testament.
NETHANEEL m Biblical
Form of NATHANAEL used in some versions of the Old Testament.
NETHANEL נְתַנְאֵל m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Hebrew form of NATHANAEL, also used in some versions of the English-language Old Testament.
NETHANIAH נְתַנְיָהוּ m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has given” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Ishmael (the assassin of Gedaliah), as well as other minor characters.
NICODEMUS Νικοδημος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Greek name Νικοδημος (Nikodemos) which meant “victory of the people” from Greek νικη (nike) “victory” and δημος (demos) “the people”. This is the name of a character in the New Testament who helps Joseph of Arimathea entomb Jesus.
NIMROD נִמְרֹד m Biblical
Meaning unknown, possibly of Akkadian origin or possibly meaning “rebel” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Nimrod is a renowned hunter, the great-grandson of Noah. He was the founder of Babylon…. [more]
NOA (1) נוֹעָה f Hebrew, Biblical
Hebrew form of NOAH (2).
NOAH (1) נֹחַ, נוֹחַ m English, Biblical
Derived from the Hebrew name נֹחַ (Noach) meaning “rest, comfort”. According to the Old Testament, Noah was the builder of the Ark that allowed him, his family, and animals of each species to survive the great Flood. After the Flood he received the sign of the rainbow as a covenant from God. He was the father of Shem, Ham and Japheth…. [more]
NOAH (2) נֹעָה, נוֹעָה f Biblical
Derived from the Hebrew name נֹעָה (No’ah) meaning “motion”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a daughter of Zelophehad.
NOGAH נֹגַה m & f Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “brightness” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of King David in the Old Testament. In modern times it is sometimes used as a feminine name.
OBADIAH עֹבַדְיָה m Biblical
Means “servant of YAHWEH” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the twelve minor prophets, the author of the Book of Obadiah, which predicts the downfall of the nation of Edom.
OBED עוֹבֵד, Ωβηδ m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “servant, worshipper” in Hebrew. This is the name of several Old Testament characters including the grandfather of David.
ODED עֹדֵד m Biblical
Means “to restore” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a prophet from Samaria.
OHAD אֹהַד m Biblical
Means “united” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the third son of Simeon.
OMAR (2) אוֹמָר m Biblical
Means “speaker” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Eliphaz in the Old Testament.
OMRI עָמְרִי m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Possibly means “life” or “servant” in Hebrew (or a related Semitic language). This was the name of a 9th-century BC military commander who became king of Israel. He appears in the Old Testament, where he is denounced as being wicked.
ONESIMUS Ονησιμος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Ονησιμος (Onesimos), which meant “beneficial, profitable”. Saint Onesimus was an escaped slave of Philemon who met Saint Paul while in prison and was converted by him. Paul sent him back to Philemon carrying the epistle that appears in the New Testament.
ONESIPHORUS Ονησιφορος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Ονησιφορος (Onesiphoros), which meant “bringing advantage, beneficial”. This name is mentioned briefly in Paul’s second epistle to Timothy in the New Testament. According to tradition he was martyred by being tied to horses and then torn apart.
OPHIR אוֹפִיר m Biblical
Meaning unknown. This is the name of a son of Joktan in the Old Testament (where it is also used as a place name).
OPHRAH עָפְרָה m Biblical
Means “fawn” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a man mentioned in genealogies and a city in Manasseh.
ORPAH עָרְפָּה f Biblical
Means “back of the neck” in Hebrew. Orpah was Naomi’s second daughter-in-law in the Book of Ruth in the Old Testament.
ORPHA f Biblical, English
Variant of ORPAH used in some translations of the Bible.
OSHEA הוֹשֵׁעַ m Biblical
Variant of HOSHEA used in some versions of the Bible.
OTHNIEL עָתְנִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “lion of God” or “strength of God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is a nephew of Caleb who becomes the first of the ruling judges of the Israelites.
PALLU פַּלּוּא m Biblical
Means “distinguished” in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Reuben in the Old Testament.
PAUL m English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Romanian, Biblical
From the Roman family name Paulus, which meant “small” or “humble” in Latin. Paul was an important leader of the early Christian church. According to Acts in the New Testament, he was a Jewish Roman citizen who converted to Christianity after the resurrected Jesus appeared to him. After this he travelled the eastern Mediterranean as a missionary. His original Hebrew name was Saul. Many of the epistles in the New Testament were authored by him…. [more]
PELEG פֶּלֶג m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew, Hebrew
Means “division, channel” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the son of Eber.
PENINNAH פְּנִנָּה f Biblical
Means “precious stone, pearl” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the wives of Elkanah, the other being Hannah.
PENUEL פְנוּאֵל m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “face of God” in Hebrew. This is the name of two minor characters in the Old Testament.
PEREZ פֶּרֶץ m Biblical
Means “breach, burst forth” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the twin brother of Zerah.
PERSIS Περσις f Biblical, Biblical Greek
Greek name meaning “Persian woman”. This was the name of a woman mentioned in Paul’s epistle to the Romans in the New Testament.
PETER m English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Slovene, Slovak, Biblical
Derived from the Greek Πετρος (Petros) meaning “stone”. This is a translation used in most versions of the New Testament of the name Cephas, meaning “stone” in Aramaic, which was given to the apostle Simon by Jesus (compare Matthew 16:18 and John 1:42). Simon Peter was the most prominent of the apostles during Jesus’ ministry and is often considered the first pope…. [more]
PHANUEL Φανουηλ m Biblical, Judeo-Christian Legend
Form of PENUEL used in the New Testament, where it is borne by the father of Anna the prophetess. It also appears in the apocryphal Book of Enoch belonging to an angel.
PHAREZ פֶּרֶץ m Biblical
Form of PEREZ used in some translations of the Bible.
PHEBE f English, Biblical
Variant of PHOEBE used in some translations of the New Testament.
PHILEMON Φιλημων m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “affectionate” in Greek, a derivative of φιλημα (philema) “kiss”. Philemon was the recipient of one of Paul’s epistles in the New Testament.
PHILETUS Φιλητος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Greek name Φιλητος (Philetos) meaning “beloved”. In the New Testament, Philetus is a heretic in the church at Ephesus.
PHILIP m English, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Biblical
From the Greek name Φιλιππος (Philippos) which means “friend of horses”, composed of the elements φιλος (philos) “friend, lover” and ‘ιππος (hippos) “horse”. This was the name of five kings of Macedon, including Philip II the father of Alexander the Great. The name appears in the New Testament belonging to two people who are regarded as saints. First, one of the twelve apostles, and second, an early figure in the Christian church known as Philip the Deacon…. [more]
PHINEAS פִּינְחָס m Biblical
Variant of PHINEHAS used in some versions of the Bible.
PHINEHAS פִּינְחָס m Biblical
Probably means “Nubian” from the Egyptian name Panhsj, though some believe it means “serpent’s mouth” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Phinehas is a grandson of Aaron who kills an Israelite because he is intimate with a Midianite woman, thus stopping a plague sent by God. Also in the Bible this is the son of Eli, killed in battle with the Philistines.
PHOEBE Φοιβη f English, Greek Mythology (Latinized), Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Φοιβη (Phoibe), which meant “bright, pure” from Greek φοιβος (phoibos). In Greek mythology Phoibe was a Titan associated with the moon. This was also an epithet of her granddaughter, the moon goddess Artemis. The name appears in Paul’s epistle to the Romans in the New Testament, where it belongs to a female minister in the church at Cenchreae. In England, it began to be used as a given name after the Protestant Reformation. A moon of Saturn bears this name (in honour of the Titan).
PONTIUS m Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin, Biblical
Roman family name. The family had Samnite roots so the name probably originated from the Oscan language, likely meaning “fifth” (a cognate of Latin Quintus). Alternatively, it could be derived from the name of the ancient province of Pontus in Asia Minor, itself probably from Greek ποντος (pontos) “sea”. A notable bearer of this name was Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea who appears in the New Testament.
PRISCA f Biblical, Dutch, Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin
Feminine form of Priscus, a Roman family name which meant “ancient” in Latin. This name appears in the epistles in the New Testament, referring to Priscilla the wife of Aquila.
PRISCILLA f English, Italian, French, Ancient Roman, Biblical Latin, Biblical
Roman name, a diminutive of PRISCA. In Acts in the New Testament Paul lived with Priscilla (also known as Prisca) and her husband Aquila in Corinth for a while. It has been used as an English given name since the Protestant Reformation, being popular with the Puritans. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow used it in his poem ‘The Courtship of Miles Standish’ (1858).
PROCHORUS Προχορος m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latinized form of the Greek name Προχορος (Prochoros) which meant “leader of the dance”. Saint Prochorus was one of the original seven deacons, as told in Acts in the New Testament.
RACHEL רָחֵל, Ραχηλ f English, Hebrew, French, German, Dutch, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
From the Hebrew name רָחֵל (Rachel) meaning “ewe”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the favourite wife of Jacob and the mother of Joseph and Benjamin. She was the younger sister of Jacob’s first wife Leah…. [more]
RAHAB רָחָב f Biblical
Means “spacious” in Hebrew. This was the name of a prostitute of Jericho who aided the Israelites in the Old Testament.
RAM (1) רָם m Biblical
Means “exalted” in Hebrew. This was a son of Hezron in the Old Testament.
RAPHAEL רָפָאֵל, רְפָאֵל, Ραφαηλ m German, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name רָפָאֵל (Rafa’el) which meant “God has healed”. In Hebrew tradition Raphael was the name of one of the seven archangels. He appears in the Book of Tobit, in which he disguises himself as a man named Azarias and accompanies Tobias on his journey to Media, aiding him along the way. In the end he cures Tobias’s father Tobit of his blindness. He is not mentioned in the New Testament, though tradition identifies him with the angel troubling the water in John 5:4…. [more]
REBECCA רִבְקָה f English, Italian, Swedish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name רִבְקָה (Rivqah) from an unattested root probably meaning “join, tie, snare”. This is the name of the wife of Isaac and the mother of Esau and Jacob in the Old Testament. It came into use as a Christian name after the Protestant Reformation, and it was popular with the Puritans in the 17th century.
REBEKAH רִבְקָה f Biblical, English
Form of REBECCA used in some versions of the Bible.
REHOBOAM רֵחַבְעָם m Biblical
From the Hebrew name רֵחַבְעָם (Rechav’am) meaning “he enlarges the people”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Solomon. He succeeded his father as king of Israel, but his subjects eventually revolted because of high taxes. This resulted in the division of the kingdom into Israel and Judah, with Rehoboam ruling Judah.
REUBEN רְאוּבֵן m Biblical, Hebrew, English
Means “behold, a son” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the eldest son of Jacob and Leah and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. Reuben was cursed by his father because he slept with Jacob’s concubine Bilhah. It has been used as a Christian name in Britain since the Protestant Reformation.
REUEL רְעוּאֵל m Biblical
Means “friend of God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is another name for Jethro. The fantasy author John Ronald Reuel Tolkien (1892-1973) was a famous bearer.
RHODA ‘Ροδη f Biblical, English
Derived from Greek ‘ροδον (rhodon) meaning “rose”. In the New Testament this name was borne by a maid in the house of Mary the mother of John Mark. As an English given name, Rhoda came into use in the 17th century.
RUFUS m Ancient Roman, English, Biblical
Roman cognomen which meant “red-haired” in Latin. Several early saints had this name, including one mentioned in one of Paul’s epistles in the New Testament. As a nickname it was used by William II Rufus, a king of England, because of his red hair. It came into general use in the English-speaking world after the Protestant Reformation.
RUTH (1) רוּת f English, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Spanish, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From a Hebrew name which was derived from the Hebrew word רְעוּת (re’ut) meaning “friend”. This is the name of the central character in the Book of Ruth in the Old Testament. She was a Moabite woman who accompanied her mother-in-law Naomi back to Bethlehem after Ruth’s husband died. There she met and married Boaz. She was an ancestor of King David…. [more]
SALATHIEL Σαλαθιηλ m Biblical, Biblical Greek
Greek form of SHEALTIEL. This form is also used in some English versions of the Bible.
SALOME Σαλωμη f English, German, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From an Aramaic name which was related to the Hebrew word שָׁלוֹם (shalom) meaning “peace”. According to the historian Josephus this was the name of the daughter of Herodias (the consort of Herod Antipas, the tetrarch of Galilee). In the New Testament, though a specific name is not given, it was a daughter of Herodias who danced for Herod and was rewarded with the head of John the Baptist, and thus Salome and the dancer have traditionally been equated…. [more]
SAMSON שִׁמְשׁוֹן m Biblical, English, French, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name שִׁמְשׁוֹן (Shimshon) which meant “sun”. Samson was an Old Testament hero granted exceptional strength by God. His mistress Delilah betrayed him and cut his hair, stripping him of his power. Thus he was captured by the Philistines, blinded, and brought to their temple. However, in a final act of strength, he pulled down the pillars of the temple upon himself and his captors…. [more]
SAMUEL שְׁמוּאֵל m English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Jewish, Biblical
From the Hebrew name שְׁמוּאֵל (Shemu’el) which could mean either “name of God” or “God has heard”. As told in the Books of Samuel in the Old Testament, Samuel was the last of the ruling judges. He led the Israelites during a period of domination by the Philistines, who were ultimately defeated in battle at Mizpah. Later he anointed Saul to be the first king of Israel, and even later anointed his successor David…. [more]
SAPPHIRA Σαπφειρη f Biblical
From the Greek name Σαπφειρη (Sappheire), which was from Greek σαπφειρος (sappheiros) meaning “sapphire” or “lapis lazuli” (ultimately derived from the Hebrew word סַפִּיר (sappir)). Sapphira is a character in Acts in the New Testament who is killed by God for lying.
SARAH שָׂרָה f English, French, German, Hebrew, Arabic, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “lady, princess, noblewoman” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of Abraham’s wife, considered the matriarch of the Jewish people. She was barren until she unexpectedly became the pregnant with Isaac at the age of 90. Her name was originally Sarai, but God changed it at the same time Abraham’s name was changed (see Genesis 17:15)…. [more]
SARAI שָׂרָי f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “my princess” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, this was Sarah’s name before God changed it (see Genesis 17:15).
SATAN שָׂטָן m Theology, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Derived from Hebrew שָׂטָן (satan) meaning “adversary”. This is the Hebrew name of the enemy of the Judeo-Christian god. In the New Testament he is also known by the title Devil (Diabolos in Greek).
SAUL שָׁאוּל m Biblical, Jewish, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name שָׁאוּל (Sha’ul) which meant “asked for, prayed for”. This was the name of the first king of Israel, as told in the Old Testament. Before the end of his reign he lost favour with God, and after a defeat by the Philistines he was succeeded by David as king. In the New Testament, Saul was the original Hebrew name of the apostle Paul.
SELA סֶלַע f Biblical
Means “rock” in Hebrew. This was the name of a city, the capital of Edom, in the Old Testament.
SELAH סֶלַה f Biblical
From a Hebrew musical term which occurs many times in the Old Testament Psalms. It was probably meant to indicate a musical pause.
SERAIAH שְׂרָיָה m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “YAHWEH is ruler” in Hebrew. This is the name of several minor characters in the Old Testament, including the father of Ezra.
SETH (1) שֵׁת, Σηθ m English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Means “placed” or “appointed” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament he is the third named son of Adam and Eve. In England this name came into use after the Protestant Reformation.
SHADRACH שַׁדְרַך m Biblical
Means “command of Aku” in Akkadian, Aku being the name of the Babylonian god of the moon. In the Old Testament Shadrach is the Babylonian name of Hananiah, one of the three men cast into a fiery furnace but saved by God.
SHAMGAR שַׁמְגַר m Biblical
Possibly means “sword” in Hebrew. Shamgar was one of the Old Testament judges.
SHARAR שָׁרָר m Biblical
Means “enemy” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the father of Ahiam.
SHEALTIEL שְׁאַלְתִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “I have asked of God” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Zerubbabel in the Old Testament.
SHEBA שְׁבָא m Biblical
Means “oath” in Hebrew. This is the name of several characters in the Old Testament. Also in the Bible, this is a place name, referring to a region in Ethiopia. The queen of Sheba visited Solomon after hearing of his wisdom.
SHELAH שֵׁלָה m Biblical
Means “petition” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of both a grandson of Shem and a son of Judah.
SHEM שֵׁם m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “name” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Shem is one of Noah’s three sons (along with Japheth and Ham) and the ancestor of the Semitic peoples.
SHEMAIAH שְׁמַעְיָה m Biblical
Means “heard by YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This name is borne by many characters in the Old Testament including a prophet in the reign of Rehoboam.
SHEMER שֶׁמֶר m Biblical
Possibly means “preserved” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the owner of the hill upon which Samaria was built.
SHERAH שֶׁאֱרָה f Biblical
Means “kinswoman” in Hebrew. This was the name of a daughter of Ephraim in the Old Testament.
SHILOH שִׁלוֹ, שִׁילֹה m & f Biblical
From an Old Testament place name possibly meaning “tranquil” in Hebrew. It is also used prophetically in the Old Testament to refer to a person, often understood to be the Messiah (see Genesis 49:10). This may in fact be a mistranslation. This name was brought to public attention after Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie gave it to their daughter in 2006.
SHIPHRAH שִׁפְרָה f Biblical
Means “beautiful” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the midwives who disobeys the Pharaoh’s order to kill any Hebrew boys they deliver.
SHULAMITE שׁוּלַמִּית f Biblical
Variant of SHULAMMITE used in some versions of the Bible.
SHULAMMITE שׁוּלַמִּית f Hebrew, Biblical
Derived from Hebrew שָׁלוֹם (shalom) “peace”. This name occurs in the Song of Songs in the Old Testament.
SILAS Σιλας m English, Greek, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Probably a short form of SILVANUS. This is the name of a companion of Saint Paul in the New Testament. Paul refers to him as Silvanus in his epistles, though it is possible that Silas was in fact a Greek form of the Hebrew name SAUL (via Aramaic)…. [more]
SILVANUS m Roman Mythology, Ancient Roman, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Roman name derived from Latin silva “wood, forest”. Silvanus was the Roman god of forests. This name appears in the New Testament belonging to one of Saint Paul’s companions, also called Silas.
SIMEON שִׁמְעוֹן m Biblical, Bulgarian, Serbian
From Συμεων (Symeon), the Old Testament Greek form of the Hebrew name Shim’on (see SIMON (1)). In the Old Testament this is the name of the second son of Jacob and Leah and the founder of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. In the New Testament the Greek rendering Σιμων (Simon) is more common, though Συμεων occurs belonging to a man who blessed the newborn Jesus. He is recognized as a saint in most Christian traditions…. [more]
SIMON (1) Σιμων m English, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, German, Dutch, Hungarian, Slovene, Romanian, Macedonian, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
From Σιμων (Simon), the New Testament Greek form of the Hebrew name שִׁמְעוֹן (Shim’on) which meant “he has heard”. This name is spelled Simeon, based on Greek Συμεων, in many translations of the Old Testament, where it is borne by the second son of Jacob. The New Testament spelling may show influence from the otherwise unrelated Greek name SIMON (2)…. [more]
SOLOMON שְׁלֹמֹה m Biblical, English, Jewish
From the Hebrew name שְׁלֹמֹה (Shelomoh) which was derived from Hebrew שָׁלוֹם (shalom) “peace”. As told in the Old Testament, Solomon was a king of Israel, the son of David and Bathsheba. He was renowned for his wisdom and wealth. Towards the end of his reign he angered God by turning to idolatry. Supposedly, he was the author of the Book of Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Solomon…. [more]
STEPHEN m English, Biblical
From the Greek name Στεφανος (Stephanos) meaning “crown”, more precisely “that which surrounds”. Saint Stephen was a deacon who was stoned to death, as told in Acts in the New Testament. He is regarded as the first Christian martyr. Due to him, the name became common in the Christian world. It was popularized in England by the Normans…. [more]
SUSANNA שׁוֹשַׁנָּה f Italian, Swedish, Finnish, Russian, Dutch, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Old Church Slavic
From Σουσαννα (Sousanna), the Greek form of the Hebrew name שׁוֹשַׁנָּה (Shoshannah). This was derived from the Hebrew word שׁוֹשָׁן (shoshan) meaning “lily” (in modern Hebrew this also means “rose”), perhaps ultimately from Egyptian sšn “lotus”. In the Old Testament Apocrypha this is the name of a woman falsely accused of adultery. The prophet Daniel clears her name by tricking her accusers, who end up being condemned themselves. It also occurs in the New Testament belonging to a woman who ministers to Jesus…. [more]
SUSANNAH שׁוֹשַׁנָּה f Biblical
Form of SUSANNA found in some versions of the Old Testament.
SYNTYCHE Συντυχη f Biblical, Biblical Greek, Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek name meaning “common fate”. This is the name of a woman mentioned in Paul’s epistle to the Philippians in the New Testament.
TABITHA Ταβιθα f English, Biblical, Biblical Greek
Means “gazelle” in Aramaic. Tabitha in the New Testament was a woman restored to life by Saint Peter. Her name is translated into Greek as Dorcas (see Acts 9:36). As an English name, Tabitha became common after the Protestant Reformation. It was popularized in the 1960s by the television show ‘Bewitched’, in which Tabitha (sometimes spelled Tabatha) is the daughter of the main character.
TALITHA f Biblical
Means “little girl” in Aramaic. The name is taken from the phrase talitha cumi meaning “little girl arise” spoken by Jesus in order to restore a young girl to life (see Mark 5:41).
TALMAI תַּלְמַי m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “furrowed” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name is borne by both a giant and also the father of King David’s wife Maacah.
TAMAR תָּמָר f Hebrew, Georgian, Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “palm tree” in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament Tamar was the daughter-in-law of Judah and later his wife. This was also the name of a daughter of King David. She was raped by her half-brother Amnon, leading to his murder by her brother Absalom. The name was borne by a 12th-century ruling queen of Georgia who presided over the kingdom at the peak of its power.
TEKOA תְּקוֹעָ m Biblical
Possibly means either “stockade” or “horn, trumpet” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a both a city and a son of Ashhur.
TEMAN תֵּימָן m Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “right hand” or “south” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of a grandson of Esau for whom the town of Teman in Edom was named.
TERAH תֶּרַח m Biblical
Possibly means “station” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament Terah is the father of Abraham. He led his people out of Ur and towards Canaan, but died along the way.
THADDAEUS Θαδδαιος m Biblical
Form of THADDEUS used in most English versions of the New Testament.
THADDEUS Θαδδαιος m English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From Θαδδαιος (Thaddaios), the Greek form of the Aramaic name Thaddai. It is possibly derived from a word meaning “heart”, but it may in fact be an Aramaic form of a Greek name such as Θεοδωρος (see THEODORE). In the Gospel of Matthew, Thaddaeus is listed as one of the twelve apostles, though elsewhere in the New Testament his name is omitted and Jude’s appears instead. It is likely that the two names refer to the same person.
THEOPHILUS Θεοφιλος m Biblical, Ancient Greek (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek name Θεοφιλος (Theophilos) which meant “friend of god”, derived from θεος (theos) “god” and φιλος (philos) “friend”. In the New Testament the evangelist Luke addresses his gospel and the Book of Acts to a man named Theophilus.
THOMAS Θωμας m English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Greek, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Greek form of the Aramaic name תָּאוֹמָא (Ta’oma’) which meant “twin”. In the New Testament this is the name of an apostle. When he heard that Jesus had risen from the dead he initially doubted the story, until Jesus appeared before him and he examined his wounds himself. According to tradition he was martyred in India. Due to his renown, the name came into general use in the Christian world…. [more]
TIMAEUS Τιμαιος m Ancient Greek (Latinized), Biblical Latin, Biblical
Latinized form of the Greek name Τιμαιος (Timaios), derived from τιμαω (timao) “to honour”. This is the name of one of Plato’s dialogues, featuring Timaeus and Socrates. Timaeus is also the name of a person mentioned briefly in the New Testament (Mark 10:46).
TIMEUS Τιμαιος m Biblical
Variant of TIMAEUS.
TIMON Τιμων m Ancient Greek, Biblical, Biblical Greek, Biblical Latin, Dutch
Derived from Greek τιμαω (timao) meaning “to honour, to esteem”. It appears briefly in the New Testament. This is also the name of the main character in Shakespeare’s tragedy ‘Timon of Athens’ (1607).
TIMOTHY m English, Biblical
English form of the Greek name Τιμοθεος (Timotheos) meaning “honouring God”, derived from τιμαω (timao) “to honour” and θεος (theos) “god”. Saint Timothy was a companion of Paul on his missionary journeys and was the recipient of two of Paul’s epistles that appear in the New Testament. He was of both Jewish and Greek ancestry. According to tradition, he was martyred at Ephesus after protesting the worship of Artemis. As an English name, Timothy was not used until after the Protestant Reformation.
TIRAS תִּירָס m Biblical
Possibly means “desire” in Hebrew. Tiras is a grandson of Noah in the Old Testament.
TIRZAH תִּרְצָה f Biblical
From the Hebrew name תִּרְצָה (Tirtzah) meaning “favourable”. Tirzah is the name of one of the daughters of Zelophehad in the Old Testament. It also occurs in the Old Testament as a place name, the early residence of the kings of the northern kingdom.
TITUS m Ancient Roman, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
Roman praenomen, or given name, which is of unknown meaning, possibly related to Latin titulus “title of honour”. It is more likely of Oscan origin, since it was borne by the legendary Sabine king Titus Tatius…. [more]
TOBIAH טוֹבִיָּה m Biblical
From the Hebrew name טוֹבִיָּה (Toviyyah) which meant “YAHWEH is good”. This was the name of an Ammonite in the Book of Nehemiah in the Old Testament.
TOBIAS Τωβιας m Biblical, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, English, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek
Greek form of TOBIAH. This is the name of the hero of the apocryphal Book of Tobit, which appears in many English versions of the Old Testament. It relates how Tobit’s son Tobias, with the help of the angel Raphael, is able to drive away a demon who has plagued Sarah, who subsequently becomes his wife. This story was popular in the Middle Ages, and the name came into occasional use in parts of Europe at that time. In England it became common after the Protestant Reformation.
TOBIT Τωβιθ m Biblical, Biblical Latin
From Greek Τωβιθ (Tobith), from the Hebrew name טוֹבִיה (Tovih) meaning “my good”. The apocryphal Book of Tobit, which is canonical in many Christian traditions but not in Judaism, tells the story of Tobit’s son Tobias. He is sent by his father to collect money in Media, aided by the angel Raphael in the guise of a man. At the end of the story Tobit’s blindness is cured.
TRYPHENA Τρυφαινα f Biblical
From the Greek name Τρυφαινα (Tryphaina), derived from Greek τρυφη (tryphe) meaning “softness, delicacy”. This name is mentioned briefly in the New Testament.
TRYPHOSA Τρυφωσα f Biblical, Biblical Greek, Ancient Greek
Derived from Greek τρυφη (tryphe) meaning “softness, delicacy”. In the New Testament this name is mentioned briefly as belonging to a companion of Tryphena.
URBAN m Danish, Swedish, German, Polish, Slovene, Biblical
From the Latin name Urbanus which meant “city dweller”. This name is mentioned briefly in one of Paul’s epistles in the New Testament. It was subsequently borne by eight popes.
URI אוּרִי m Biblical, Biblical Latin, Hebrew
Means “my light” in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Bezalel in the Old Testament.
URIAH אוּרִיָה m Biblical
From the Hebrew name אוּרִיָה (‘Uriyah) which meant “YAHWEH is my light”. In the Old Testament this is the name of a Hittite warrior in King David’s army, the first husband of Bathsheba. David desired Bathsheba so he placed Uriah in the forefront of battle so he would be killed.
URIEL אוּרִיאֵל m Biblical, Hebrew
From the Hebrew name אוּרִיאֵל (‘Uri’el) which meant “God is my light”. Uriel was one of the seven archangels in Hebrew tradition. He is mentioned only in the Apocrypha, for example in the Book of Enoch where he warns Noah of the coming flood.
URIJAH אוּרִיָה m Biblical
Form of URIAH used in some English versions of the Old Testament (for a character in the Book of Jeremiah).
UZZI עֻזִּי m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “my power” in Hebrew. This is the name of several minor characters in the Old Testament.
UZZIAH עֻזִּיָּה m Biblical
Means “my power is YAHWEH” in Hebrew. This is the name of several Old Testament characters including a king of Judah.
UZZIEL עֻזִּיאֵל m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means “my power is God” in Hebrew. This is the name of several minor characters in the Old Testament.
VASHTI וַשְׁתִּי f Biblical
Possibly means “thread” in Hebrew, but it is most likely of Persian origin. In the Old Testament this is the name of the first wife of King Ahasuerus of Persia before he marries Esther.
ZACCAI זַכָּי m Biblical
From the Hebrew name זַכָּי (Zakkay) meaning “pure”. This is the name of a minor character in the Old Testament.
ZACCHAEUS Ζακχαιος m Biblical
From Ζακχαιος (Zakchaios), the Greek form of ZACCAI. In the New Testament he is a tax collector in Jericho who gives half his possessions to charity.
ZACHARIAH m English, Biblical
Variant of ZECHARIAH. This spelling is used in the King James Version of the Old Testament to refer to one of the kings of Israel (called Zechariah in other versions).
ZACHARIAS Ζαχαριας m Biblical, Biblical Greek, Greek
Greek form of ZECHARIAH. This form of the name is used in most English versions of the New Testament to refer to the father of John the Baptist. It was also borne by an 8th-century pope (called Zachary in English).
ZACHARY m English, Biblical
Usual English form of ZACHARIAS, used in some English versions of the New Testament. This form has been in use since the Middle Ages, though it did not become common until after the Protestant Reformation. It was borne by American military commander and president Zachary Taylor (1784-1850).
ZADOK צָדוֹק m Biblical
Means “righteous” in Hebrew. This is the name of several characters in the Old Testament, most notably the high priest of Israel during the reigns of David and Solomon. Solomon was anointed by Zadok.
ZALMON צַלְמוֹן m Biblical
Means “shady” in Hebrew. This is the name of one of David’s mighty men in the Old Testament.
ZARAH זֵרַח m Biblical
Form of ZERAH used in some translations of the Bible.
ZEBADIAH זְבַדְיָה m Biblical
Means “YAHWEH has bestowed” in Hebrew. This was the name of several Old Testament characters.
ZEBEDEE Ζεβεδαιος m Biblical
From Ζεβεδαιος (Zebedaios), the Greek form of ZEBADIAH used in the New Testament, where it refers to the father of the apostles James and John.
ZEBULON זְבוּלֻן m Biblical
Variant of ZEBULUN.
ZEBULUN זְבוּלֻן m Biblical
Possibly derived from Ugartic zbl meaning “prince”. In the Old Testament Zebulun is the tenth son of Jacob (his sixth son by Leah) and the ancestor of one of the twelve tribes of Israel. Genesis 30:20 implies two different roots for the name: זָבַל (zaval) “to dwell” and זֵבֵד (zeved) “gift, dowry”. These are probably only folk etymologies.
ZECHARIAH זְכַרְיָה m Biblical, English
From the Hebrew name זְכַרְיָה (Zekharyah) meaning “YAHWEH remembers”. This is the name of many characters in the Old Testament, including the prophet Zechariah, the author of the Book of Zechariah. The name also appears in the New Testament belonging to the father of John the Baptist, who was temporarily made dumb because of his disbelief. He is regarded as a saint by Christians. In some versions of the New Testament his name is spelled in the Greek form Zacharias or the English form Zachary. As an English given name, Zechariah has been in occasional use since the Protestant Reformation.
ZEDEKIAH צִדְקִיָּהוּ m Biblical
From the Hebrew name צִדְקִיָּהוּ (Tzidqiyyahu) meaning “justice of YAHWEH”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the last king of Judah.
ZELOPHEHAD צְלָפְחָד m Biblical
Possibly means either “first born” or “shadow from terror” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament, Zelophehad is a man who dies while the Israelites are wandering in the wilderness, leaving five daughters as heirs.
ZEPHANIAH צְפַנְיָה m Biblical
From the Hebrew name צְפַנְיָה (Tzefanyah) meaning “YAHWEH has hidden”. This is the name of one of the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, the author of the Book of Zephaniah.
ZERAH זֵרַח m Biblical
Means “dawning, shining” in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of Judah and the twin of Perez in the Old Testament.
ZIBA (2) צִיבָה m Biblical
Means “station” in Hebrew. This was the name of a servant of Saul in the Old Testament.
ZIBIAH צִבְיָה f Biblical
Means “roe, deer” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the mother of king Joash of Judah.
ZILLAH צִלָּה f Biblical
Means “shade” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament she is the second wife of Lamech.
ZILPAH זִלְפָּה f Biblical, Biblical Hebrew
Means “frailty” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this is the name of the handmaid who was given to Jacob by Leah.
ZIMRI זִמְרִי m Biblical
Means “my praise” or “my music” in Hebrew. This is the name of a king of Israel in the Old Testament. He ruled for only seven days, when he was succeeded by the commander of the army Omri.
ZION צִיוֹן m Jewish, Biblical
From the name of a citadel which was in the center of Jerusalem. Zion is also used to refer to a Jewish homeland and to heaven.
ZIPPORAH צִפּוֹרָה f Biblical, Hebrew
From the Hebrew name צִפּוֹרָה (Tzipporah), derived from צִפּוֹר (tzippor) meaning “bird”. In the Old Testament this is the name of the Midianite wife of Moses. She was the daughter of the priest Jethro.
ZURIEL צוּרִיאֵל m Biblical
Means “my rock is God” in Hebrew. In the Old Testament this name was borne by a chief of the Merarite Levites at the time of the Exodus.

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