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 16th-century Mohawk leader who founded the Iroquois Confederacy. 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.
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 ひなた
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.
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, Catalan, English, Dutch, German, 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).
HUSNI m & f Arabic
Derived from Arabic حسن (husn)
meaning "beauty, excellence, goodness".
HWAN m & f Korean
From Sino-Korean 煥 (hwan)
meaning "shining, brilliant, lustrous" or other characters which are pronounced similarly. It usually occurs in combination with another character.
HYACINTHUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized), Ancient Greek (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek name ‘Υακινθος (Hyakinthos)
, which was derived from the name of the hyacinth flower. In Greek legend Hyakinthos was accidentally killed by Apollo
, who caused a lily to arise from his blood. The name was also borne by several early saints, notably a 3rd-century martyr who was killed with his brother Protus.
HYE m Korean
From Sino-Korean 慧 (hye)
meaning "bright, intelligent" or other characters which are pronounced in the same way. Although it does appear rarely as a single-character name, it is more often used in combination with another character. A notable bearer was a 6th-century king of Baekje.
HYEON m & f Korean
From Sino-Korean 賢 (hyeon)
meaning "virtuous, worthy, able" or other characters which are pronounced similarly. It usually occurs in combination with another character, though it is sometimes used as a stand-alone name.
HYEON-JEONG f & m Korean
From Sino-Korean 賢 (hyeon)
meaning "virtuous, worthy, able" or 炫 (hyeon)
meaning "shine, glitter" combined with 廷 (jeong)
meaning "court" or 貞 (jeong)
meaning "virtuous, chaste, loyal". This name can be formed by other hanja character combinations as well.
HYEON-JU f & m Korean
From Sino-Korean 賢 (hyeon)
meaning "virtuous, worthy, able" and 珠 (ju)
meaning "jewel, pearl". This name can be formed by other hanja character combinations as well.
HYEON-U m Korean
From Sino-Korean 賢 (hyeon)
meaning "virtuous, worthy, able" or 顯 (hyeon)
meaning "manifest, clear" combined with 祐 (u)
meaning "divine intervention, protection" or 雨 (u)
meaning "rain". This name can be formed by other hanja character combinations as well.
HYPERION m Greek Mythology
Derived from Greek ‘υπερ (hyper)
"over". In Greek myth this was the name of a Titan who presided over the sun and light. By Theia he was the father of the sun god Helios, the moon goddess Selene, and the dawn goddess Eos.
HYRUM m English (Rare)
Variant of HIRAM
. This name was borne by Hyrum Smith (1800-1844), an early leader within the Mormon church.
HYWEL m Welsh
Means "eminent" in Welsh. This was the name of a 10th-century king of Wales.
IAGO m Welsh, Galician, Portuguese
Welsh and Galician form of JACOB
. This was the name of two early Welsh kings of Gwynedd. It is also the name of the villain in Shakespeare's tragedy 'Othello' (1603).
IAH m Egyptian Mythology
Means "moon" in Egyptian. In Egyptian mythology this was the name of a god of the moon, later identified with Thoth
IARFHLAITH m Irish
Composed of the Irish elements ior
, of unknown meaning, and flaith
"lord". Saint Iarfhlaith was a 6th-century bishop from Galway, Ireland.
ICARUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
From the Greek Ικαρος (Ikaros)
, of unknown meaning. In Greek myth Icarus was the son of Daedalus
, locked with his father inside the Labyrinth by Minos
. They escaped from the maze using wings devised from wax, but Icarus flew too close to the sun and the wax melted, plunging him to his death.
ICHABOD 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).
ICHIROU m Japanese
From Japanese 一 (ichi)
meaning "one" and 郎 (rou)
meaning "son". This was traditionally a name given to the first son. Other combinations of kanji characters are also possible.
IDRIS (1) m Arabic
Possibly means "interpreter" in Arabic. In the Qur'an this is the name of an ancient prophet. He is traditionally equated with the Hebrew prophet Enoch
IDRIS (2) m Welsh
Means "ardent lord" from Welsh udd
"lord, prince" combined with ris
"ardent, enthusiastic, impulsive".
IDWAL m Welsh
Means "lord of the wall", derived from Welsh udd
"lord, prince" combined with gwal
IGNATIUS m Late Roman
From the Roman family name Egnatius
, meaning unknown, of Etruscan origin. The spelling was later altered to resemble Latin ignis
"fire". This was the name of several saints, including the third bishop of Antioch who was thrown to wild beasts by emperor Trajan, and by Saint Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556), founder of the Jesuits, whose real birth name was in fact Íñigo.
IGOR m Russian, Polish, Slovene, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian
Russian form of Yngvarr
). The Varangians brought it to Russia in the 10th century. It was borne by two Grand Princes of Kiev. Famous bearers include Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971), a Russian composer whose most famous work is 'The Rite of Spring', and Igor Sikorsky (1889-1972), the Russian-American designer of the first successful helicopter.