Meaning & History
From a Scottish surname that was in turn derived from a Scottish place name meaning "green water". Historically this name has been relatively common among Jews, who have used it as an American-sounding form of Hebrew names beginning with I such as Isaac, Israel and Isaiah. A famous bearer was the Russian-American songwriter and lyricist Irving Berlin (1888-1989), whose birth name was Israel Beilin.
Sources & References
- Cleveland Kent Evans, The Great Big Book of Baby Names (2006)