HE f & m Chinese
From Chinese 河 (hé)
meaning "river, stream", 和 (hé)
meaning "harmony, peace", or 荷 (hé)
meaning "lotus, water lily" (which is usually only feminine). Other characters can form this name as well. A famous bearer was the 15th-century explorer Zheng He.
HEARD m Anglo-Saxon
Short form of various Old English names containing the element heard
meaning "brave, hardy".
HEATH m English
From an English surname which denoted one who lived on a heath. It was popularized as a given name by the character Heath Barkley from the 1960s television series 'The Big Valley'.
HEBER (2) 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
HECTOR m English, French, Greek Mythology (Latinized), Arthurian Romance
Latinized form of Greek ‘Εκτωρ (Hektor)
, which was derived from ‘εκτωρ (hektor)
"holding fast", ultimately from εχω (echo)
meaning "to hold, to possess". In Greek legend Hector was one of the Trojan champions who fought against the Greeks. After he killed Achilles
' friend Patroclus
in battle, he was himself brutally slain by Achilles, who proceeded to tie his dead body to a chariot and drag it about. This name also appears in Arthurian legends belonging to King Arthur
's foster father.... [more]
HEDDWYN m Welsh
Derived from the Welsh elements hedd
"peace" and gwyn
"white, fair, blessed".
HEDLEY m English (Rare)
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "heather clearing" in Old English.
HÉLDER m Portuguese
Meaning uncertain. It was borne by the Brazilian archbishop Dom Hélder Câmara (1909-1999) who was noted for his charity. It could be from the name of the Dutch town of Den Helder (possibly meaning "hell's door" in Dutch). Alternatively, it might be derived from the Germanic given name HULDERIC
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.
HELIOS m Greek Mythology
Means "sun" in Greek. This was the name of the young Greek sun god, who rode across the sky each day in a chariot pulled by four horses.
HEMMING m Swedish, Norwegian, Danish
Perhaps derived from Old Norse hamr
"shape", and possibly originally a nickname for a person believed to be a shape changer.
HENG m & f Chinese
From Chinese 恒 (héng)
meaning "constant, persistent", as well as other characters with a similar pronunciation.
HENGIST m Ancient Germanic
Of Germanic origin, meaning "stallion". Hengist and his brother Horsa were the leaders of the first Germanic settlers in Britain. Hengist established a kingdom in Kent in the 5th century.
HENRIQUE m Portuguese
Portuguese form of HENRY
. This was the name of a 15th-century Portuguese naval explorer (known as Henry the Navigator in English).
HENRY m English
From the Germanic name Heimirich
which meant "home ruler", composed of the elements heim
"home" and ric
"power, ruler". It was later commonly spelled Heinrich
, with the spelling altered due to the influence of other Germanic names like Haganrich
, in which the first element is hagan
HEPHAESTUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of Greek ‘Ηφαιστος (Hephaistos)
, meaning unknown. It probably shares its origin with the Minoan city of Φαιστος (Phaistos)
, which is of Pre-Greek origin. In Greek mythology Hephaestus was the god of fire and forging, the husband of the unfaithful Aphrodite
. It was said that when he was born Hera
, his mother, was so displeased with his physical deformities that she hurled him off the top of Mount Olympus.
HERACLIUS m Ancient Greek (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek personal name ‘Ηρακλειος (Herakleios)
which was derived from the name of the Greek hero HERAKLES
. This was the name of a 7th-century Byzantine emperor, known for his victories over the Sassanid Persian Empire. This name was also borne by two early saints.
HERAKLES m Greek Mythology
Means "glory of Hera" from the name of the goddess HERA
combined with Greek κλεος (kleos)
"glory". This was the name of a hero in Greek and Roman mythology, the son of Zeus
and the mortal woman Alcmene
. After being driven insane by Hera
and killing his own children, Herakles completed twelve labours in order to atone for his crime and become immortal.
HERBERT m English, German, French, Slovene, Polish
Derived from the Germanic elements hari
"army" and beraht
"bright". The Normans introduced this name to England, where it replaced an Old English cognate Herebeorht
. In the course of the Middle Ages it became rare, but it was revived in the 19th century.
HEREWARD m Anglo-Saxon
Derived from the Old English elements here
"army" and weard
"guard". This was the name of an 11th-century Anglo-Saxon leader who rebelled against Norman rule.
HERMAGORAS m Ancient Greek
From the name of the messenger god HERMES
combined with Greek αγορα (agora)
meaning "assembly, marketplace". Saint Hermagoras (3rd century) was the first bishop of Aquileia in Italy.
HERMAN m English, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Slovene, Ancient Germanic
Means "army man", derived from the Germanic elements hari
"army" and man
"man". It was introduced to England by the Normans, died out, and was revived in the English-speaking world in the 19th century. It was borne by a 18th-century Russian missionary to Alaska who is venerated as a saint in the Orthodox Church. Another famous bearer was Herman Melville (1819-1891), the author of 'Moby-Dick'.
HERMENEGILDO m Spanish, Portuguese
Spanish and Portuguese form of a Visigothic name which meant "complete sacrifice" from the Germanic elements ermen
"whole, entire" and gild
"sacrifice, value". It was borne by a 6th-century saint, the son of Liuvigild the Visigothic king of Hispania.
HERMES m Greek Mythology, Ancient Greek
Probably from Greek ‘ερμα (herma)
meaning "cairn, pile of stones, boundary marker". Hermes was a Greek god associated with speed and good luck, who served as a messenger to Zeus
and the other gods. He was also the patron of travellers, writers, athletes, merchants, thieves and orators.... [more]
HERMINIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman name which was possibly of unknown Etruscan origin, but could also be derived from the name of the god HERMES
. In Roman legend this was the name of a companion of Aeneas.
HERNANDO m Spanish
Medieval Spanish form of FERDINAND
. A famous bearer of this name was Hernando Cortés (1485-1547), a Spanish conquistador.
HEROD 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.
HERODOTUS m Ancient Greek (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek name ‘Ηροδοτος (Herodotos)
, derived from the name of the goddess HERA
combined with δοτος (dotos)
meaning "given, granted". Herodotus was a Greek historian of the 5th century BC who wrote about Persian and the Persian Wars. He is known as the Father of History.
HERON m Ancient Greek
Derived from Greek ‘ηρως (heros)
meaning "hero". This was the name of a 1st-century Greek inventor (also known as Hero
) from Alexandria.
HERSH m Yiddish
Means "deer" in Yiddish. The deer is particularly associated with the tribe of Naphtali
(see Genesis 49:21).
HERSHEL m Yiddish, American
Yiddish diminutive of HERSH
. As a non-Jewish American name (somewhat common around the end of the 19th century), it was likely inspired by the German surname HERSCHEL
, borne for instance by the British astronomer William Herschel (1738-1822).
HESPEROS m Ancient Greek
Means "evening" in Greek. This was the name of the personification of the Evening Star (the planet Venus) in Greek mythology.
HEZEKIAH 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
HIAWATHA m History, Native American, Iroquois
From the Iroquoian name Haio-went-ha
meaning "he who combs". This was the name of a Mohawk or Onondaga leader who founded the Iroquois Confederacy, possibly in the 15th century. He was later the subject of a fictionalized 1855 poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
HIDDE m Frisian
Frisian short form of names containing the Germanic element hild
HIDEAKI m Japanese
From Japanese 英 (hide)
meaning "excellent, fine" and 明 (aki)
meaning "bright", as well as other combinations of kanji.
HIDEKI m Japanese
From Japanese 秀 (hide)
meaning "excellent, outstanding" or 英 (hide)
meaning "excellent, fine" combined with 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree". Other kanji combinations can also form this name.
HIDEYOSHI m Japanese
From Japanese 秀 (hide)
meaning "excellent, outstanding" combined with 良 (yoshi)
meaning "good, virtuous, respectable" or 吉 (yoshi)
meaning "good luck". Other kanji combinations are possible. Toyotomi Hideyoshi (Hideyoshi 秀吉
being his given name) was a 16th-century daimyo who unified Japan and attempted to conquer Korea. He also banned the ownership of weapons by the peasantry, and banished Christian missionaries.
HIKARI f & m Japanese
From Japanese 光 (hikari)
meaning "light". Other kanji can also form this name. It is often written with the hiragana writing system.
HIKARU m & f Japanese
From Japanese 光 (hikaru)
meaning "light" or 輝 (hikaru)
meaning "brightness". Other kanji can also form this name.
HILARIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman name which was derived from Latin hilaris
meaning "cheerful". Alternatively, it could be derived from the Greek name ‘Ιλαρος (Hilaros)
also meaning "cheerful" (the Greek word ‘ιλαρος
was the source of the Latin word hilaris
). Saint Hilarius was a 4th-century theologian and bishop of Poitiers. This was also the name of a 5th-century pope.
HILARY f & m English
Medieval English form of HILARIUS
. During the Middle Ages it was primarily a masculine name. It was revived in Britain at the beginning of the 20th century as a predominantly feminine name. In America, this name and the variant Hillary
seemed to drop in popularity after Hillary Clinton (1947-) became the first lady.
HILDRED f & m English
Possibly from the Old English masculine name Hildræd
, which was composed of the elements hild
"battle" and ræd
"counsel". This name was revived in the late 19th century, probably because of its similarity to the popular names Hilda
HINATA f & m Japanese
From Japanese 日向 (hinata)
meaning "sunny place", 陽向 (hinata)
meaning "toward the sun", or a non-standard reading of 向日葵 (himawari)
meaning "sunflower". Other kanji compounds are also possible. Because of the irregular readings, this name is often written using the hiragana writing system.
HIRAH m Biblical
Means "splendour" in Hebrew. This was the name of the father-in-law of Judah in the Old Testament.
HIRAKU m Japanese
From Japanese 拓 (hiraku)
meaning "expand, open, support". Other kanji can also form this name.
HIRAM 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.
HIROKI m Japanese
From Japanese 大 (hiro)
meaning "big, great" and 輝 (ki)
meaning "brightness" or 樹 (ki)
meaning "tree". Other kanji combinations are also possible.
HIROSHI m Japanese
From Japanese 寛 (hiroshi)
meaning "tolerant, generous", 浩 (hiroshi)
meaning "prosperous", or other kanji and kanji combinations which are read the same way.
HIROTO m Japanese
From Japanese 大 (hiro)
meaning "big, great" or 博 (hiro)
meaning "command, esteem" combined with 翔 (to)
meaning "soar, glide" or 斗 (to)
, which refers to a Chinese constellation. Other kanji combinations can also form this name.
HISHAM m Arabic
Means "generous" in Arabic, ultimately from hashama
"to crush". The meaning derives from the traditional Arab act of crushing bread into crumbs in order to share it. This was the name of an 8th-century caliph of the Umayyad dynasty in Spain.
HLA m & f Burmese
Means "pretty, favourable" in Burmese.
HOEBAER m Limburgish
Limburgish form of HUBERT
. Its spelling has been influenced by the French pronunciation of Hubert.
HOLDEN m English (Modern)
From a surname which was originally derived from a place name meaning "deep valley" in Old English. This is the name of the main character in J. D. Salinger's novel 'The Catcher in the Rye' (1951), Holden Caufield.
HOLLIS m & f English
From an English surname which was derived from Middle English holis
"holly trees". It was originally given to a person who lived near a group of those trees.
HOMER m English, Ancient Greek (Anglicized)
From the Greek name ‘Ομηρος (Homeros)
, derived from ‘ομηρος (homeros)
meaning "hostage, pledge". Homer was the Greek epic poet who wrote the 'Iliad', about the Trojan War, and the 'Odyssey', about Odysseus
's journey home after the war. There is some debate about when he lived, or if he was even a real person, though most scholars place him in the 8th century BC. In the modern era, Homer
has been used as a given name in the English-speaking world (chiefly in America) since the 18th century. This name is borne by the cartoon father on the television series 'The Simpsons'.
HONG m & f Chinese
From Chinese 虹 (hóng)
meaning "rainbow", 弘 (hóng)
meaning "enlarge, expand, great" (which is usually only masculine) or 鸿 (hóng)
meaning "wild swan, great, vast" (also usually only masculine). Other characters can also form this name.
HONORATUS m Late Roman
Late Latin name which meant "esteemed, distinguished". This was the name of at least seven saints, including a 5th-century archbishop of Arles and a 6th-century bishop of Amiens who is the patron saint of bakers.
HONORIUS m Late Roman
Late Latin name which meant "honour". This was the name of an emperor of the Western Roman Empire. It was also borne by a few early saints and four popes.
HORACE m English, French
English and French form of HORATIUS
, and the name by which the Roman poet Quintus Horatius Flaccus is commonly known those languages. In the modern era it has been used as a given name since the Renaissance, in honour of the poet.
HORATIO m English
Variant of HORATIUS
. It was borne by the British admiral Horatio Nelson (1758-1805), famous for his defeat of Napoleon's forces in the Battle of Trafalgar, in which he was himself killed. Since his time the name has been occasionally used in his honour.
HORATIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name which was possibly derived from Latin hora
"hour, time, season", though the name may actually be of Etruscan origin. A famous bearer was Quintus Horatius Flaccus, a Roman lyric poet of the 1st century BC who is better known as Horace in the English-speaking world.
HOREA m Romanian
From Romanian horă
, a type of circle dance. This was the nickname of Vasile Ursu Nicola (1731-1785), a leader of a peasant rebellion in Romania. He was eventually captured, tortured and executed.
HORSA m Ancient Germanic
From the Germanic element hros
meaning "horse". Horsa and his brother Hengist were the leaders of the first Germanic settlers to arrive in Britain.
HORST m German
Means "wood, thicket" in German. Alternatively, it may derive from the Germanic element hros
HORUS m Egyptian Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of ‘Ωρος (Horos)
, the Greek form of Egyptian Hrw
(reconstructed as Heru
) possibly meaning "falcon" or "high". In Egyptian mythology Horus was the god of light, often depicted as a man with the head of a falcon. The son Osiris
, he avenged his father's murder by killing Seth
HOSEA m Biblical
Variant transcription of Hoshe'a
). 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 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
), 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.
HOWARD m English
From an English surname which can derive from several different sources: the Anglo-Norman given name Huard
, which was from the Germanic name HUGHARD
; the Anglo-Scandinavian given name Haward
, from the Old Norse name HÁVARÐR
; or the Middle English term ewehirde
meaning "ewe herder". This is the surname of a British noble family, members of which have held the title Duke of Norfolk from the 15th century to the present. A famous bearer of the given name was the American industrialist Howard Hughes (1905-1976).
HOYT m English
From an English surname which was derived from Middle English hoit
"stick", originally a nickname for a thin person.
HRÓARR m Ancient Scandinavian
Old Norse name, derived from the element hróðr
"fame" combined with either geirr
"spear" (making it a relation of HRÓÐGEIRR
"warrior" or varr
"vigilant, cautious". This is the name of a legendary Danish king, the same one who is featured in the Anglo-Saxon poem 'Beowulf' with the name Hroðgar
HROÐGAR m Anglo-Saxon
Old English cognate of Hrodger
). The name became unused after the Normans introduced Hrodger
after their invasion. In the Old English poem 'Beowulf' this is the name of the Danish king.
HUA f & m Chinese
From Chinese 华 (huá)
meaning "splendid, illustrious, Chinese" or 花 (huā)
meaning "flower, blossom" (which is usually only feminine). Other Chinese characters can form this name as well.
HUAN f & m Chinese
From Chinese 欢 (huān)
meaning "happy, pleased", as well as other characters pronounced in a similar way.
HUANG m & f Chinese
From Chinese 煌 (huáng)
meaning "bright, shining, luminous" (which is usually only masculine) or 凰 (huáng)
meaning "phoenix" (usually only feminine). Other Chinese characters are also possible.
HUBERT m English, German, Dutch, French, Polish, Ancient Germanic
Means "bright heart", derived from the Germanic elements hug
"heart, mind" and beraht
"bright". Saint Hubert was an 8th-century bishop of Maastricht who is considered the patron saint of hunters. The Normans brought the name to England, where it replaced an Old English cognate Hygebeorht
. It died out during the Middle Ages but was revived in the 19th century.
HUDSON m English
From an English surname which meant "son of HUDDE
". A famous bearer of the surname was the English explorer Henry Hudson (1570-1611).
HUGH m English
From the Germanic element hug
, meaning "heart, mind, spirit". It was common among Frankish and French nobility, being borne by Hugh Capet, a 10th-century king of France who founded the Capetian dynasty. The Normans brought the name to England and it became common there, even more so after the time of the 12th-century bishop Saint Hugh of Lincoln, who was known for his charity. This was also the name of kings of Cyprus and the crusader kingdom of Jerusalem. The name is used in Ireland and Scotland as the Anglicized form of Aodh
HUGO m Spanish, Portuguese, English, Dutch, German, French, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Ancient Germanic (Latinized)
Latinized form of HUGH
. As a surname it has belonged to the French author Victor Hugo (1802-1885), the writer of 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame' and 'Les Misérables'.
HUI f & m Chinese
From Chinese 慧 (huì)
meaning "intelligent, wise" (which is usually only feminine), 辉 (huī)
meaning "brightness", besides other characters which are pronounced similarly.
HUITZILOPOCHTLI m Aztec and Toltec Mythology
Means "southern hummingbird" or "left-handed hummingbird" in Nahuatl. In Aztec mythology he was the god of the sun and war. He was a patron deity of the city of Tenochtitlan (at the site of modern Mexico City).
HUMBERT m German, French, English (Rare), Ancient Germanic
Means "bright warrior", derived from the Germanic elements hun
"warrior, bear cub" and beraht
"bright". The Normans introduced this name to England, though it has always been uncommon there. It was borne by two kings of Italy (called Umberto in Italian), who ruled in the 19th and 20th centuries.
HUMPHREY m English
Means "peaceful warrior" from the Germanic elements hun
"warrior, bear cub" and frid
"peace". The Normans introduced this name to England, where it replaced the Old English cognate Hunfrith
, and it was regularly used through the Middle Ages. A famous bearer was the American actor Humphrey Bogart (1899-1957), who starred in 'The Maltese Falcon' and 'Casablanca'.
HUNOR m Hungarian
Derived from the ethnic term Hun
, which refers to the nomadic people from Central Asia who expanded into Europe in the 4th century. The word Hun
is from Latin Hunnus
, which is possibly of Turkic origin.
HUNTER m & f English
From an occupational English surname for a hunter, derived from Old English hunta
. A famous bearer was the eccentric American journalist Hunter S. Thompson (1937-2005).
HURI m Biblical
Means "linen weaver" in Hebrew. This was the name of the father of Abihail in the Old Testament.
HUSAM m Arabic
Means "sword" in Arabic, a derivative of the verb حسم (hasama)
meaning "to sever, to finish, to decide".
HUSAYN m Arabic
Diminutive of HASAN
. Husayn ibn Ali (also commonly transliterated Hussein
) was the son of Ali
and the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad
. His older brother was named Hasan
. The massacre of Husayn and his family was a major event in the split between Shia and Sunni Muslims, which continues to this day. In more recent times this was the name of a king of Jordan (1935-1999).