AARON אַהֲרֹן 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]
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)
meaning "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
ADAM אָדָם m English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Polish, Czech, Slovak, Russian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Serbian, Macedonian, Romanian, Catalan, 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]
ADIR אַדִּיר m Hebrew
Means "strong, mighty" in Hebrew. This word is used in the Hebrew Bible to describe God.
ADVA אַדְוָה f Hebrew
Means "small wave, ripple" in Hebrew.
AKIVA עֲקִיבָא m Hebrew
From an Aramaic form of YAAKOV
. Akiva (or Akiba) ben Joseph was a prominent 1st-century Jewish rabbi.
ALIYA (2) עֲלִיָּה f Hebrew
Means "ascent" in Hebrew, a derivative of עָלָה ('alah)
meaning "to ascend, to climb". This is also a Hebrew word referring to immigration to Israel.
ALTER אלתר, אַלטער m Yiddish
From Yiddish אַלט (alt)
meaning "old". This name was traditionally given to a sickly newborn by Jewish parents in order to confuse the Angel of Death, in the hopes that he would go looking for somebody younger or somebody else.
AMI (4) עַמִי m Hebrew
Means "my people" or "my nation" in Hebrew.
AMOS עָמוֹס m English, Hebrew, Biblical, Biblical Latin, Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew
From Hebrew עָמַס ('amas)
meaning "load, burden". 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.
ARIEL אֲרִיאֵל m & f Hebrew, English, French, Spanish, Biblical, Biblical Greek
Means "lion of God" in Hebrew, from אֲרִי ('ari)
meaning "lion" and אֵל ('el)
meaning "God". 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).
AYAL אַיָּל m Hebrew
Means "stag, male deer" in Hebrew.
AYALA אַיָּלָה f Hebrew
Means "doe, female deer" in Hebrew.
AYELET אַיֶלֶת f Hebrew
Means "doe, female deer, gazelle". It is taken from the Hebrew phrase אַיֶלֶת הַשַׁחַר ('ayelet hashachar)
, literally "gazelle of dawn", which is a name of the morning star.
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.
BATEL בַּת־אֵל f Hebrew
Means "daughter of God" in Hebrew.
BER בֶר, בער m Yiddish
Means "bear" in Yiddish, a vernacular form of Dov
BEYLKE ביילקע f Yiddish (Rare)
Diminutive of BEYLE
. This is the name of a daughter of Tevye in late 19th-century Yiddish stories by Sholem Aleichem, on which the musical 'Fiddler on the Roof' was based.
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
. This was also the name of one of the two pillars that stood outside Solomon's Temple (with Jachin
CARMEL כַּרְמֶל f English, Jewish
From the title of the Virgin Mary Our Lady of Carmel
(Karmel) (meaning "garden" in Hebrew) is a mountain in Israel mentioned in the Old Testament. It was the site of several early Christian monasteries. As an English given name, it has mainly been used by Catholics.
CHAYIM חַיִּים m Hebrew
Derived from the Hebrew word חַיִּים (chayyim)
meaning "life". It has been used since medieval times.
CHESED חֶסֶד f & m Hebrew
Means "kindness, goodness" in Hebrew.
DAFNA דַּפְנָה f Hebrew
Means "laurel" in Hebrew, of Greek origin.
DANIEL דָּנִיֵּאל 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", from the roots דִּין (din)
meaning "to judge" and אֵל ('el)
meaning "God". 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]
DAR דַּר f & m Hebrew
Means "mother-of-pearl, nacre" in Hebrew.
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 derived from Hebrew דּוֹד (dod)
meaning "beloved" or "uncle". 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]
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.
DOR דּוֹר m & f Hebrew
Means "generation" in Hebrew.
DORI דּוֹרִי m Hebrew
Means "my generation" in Hebrew.
DROR דְּרוֹר m Hebrew
Means "freedom" or "sparrow" in Hebrew.
EDEN עֵדֶן f & m Hebrew, English (Modern)
Possibly from Hebrew עֵדֶן
('eden) meaning "pleasure, delight", or perhaps derived from Sumerian 𒂔 (edin)
meaning "plain". According to the Old Testament the Garden of Eden was the place where the first people, Adam
, lived before they were expelled.
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.
ELI (1) עֵלִי 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]
ELIJAH אֱלִיָּהוּ m English, Hebrew, Biblical
From the Hebrew name אֱלִיָּהוּ ('Eliyyahu)
meaning "my God is YAHWEH
", derived from the elements אֵל ('el)
and יָה (yah)
, both referring to the Hebrew God. 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]
ELIOR אֱלִיאוֹר m Hebrew
Means "my God is my light" in Hebrew.
ELON אֵילוֹן m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Means "oak tree" in Hebrew. According to the Old Testament this was the name of one of the ruling judges of the Israelites.
ESTEE f Jewish
Diminutive of ESTHER
. A famous bearer was the American businesswoman Estée Lauder (1908-2004), founder of the cosmetics company that bears her name. Her birth name was Josephine Esther Mentzer. Apparently she added the accent to her name Estee
in order to make it appear French.
ESTER אֶסְתֵר f Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese, Italian, Czech, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, Hebrew
Form of ESTHER
used in several languages.
ESTHER אֶסְתֵר 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
EVRON עֶבְרוֹן m Hebrew (Rare)
From a biblical place name, also called עַבְדּוֹן ('Avdon)
meaning "servile", for which it may be a clerical error.
EYAL אֱיָל m Hebrew
Means "might, strength" in Hebrew.
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.
FISHEL פישׁל, פֿישל m Yiddish
Means "little fish" in Yiddish, a diminutive of פֿיש (fish)
FRUMA פֿרומאַ, פֿרומע f Yiddish
From Yiddish פֿרום (frum)
meaning "pious". This is the name of a character (appearing as a ghost) in the musical 'Fiddler on the Roof' (1964).
GAI גַּיְא m Hebrew
Means "valley, ravine" in Hebrew.
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.
GILI גִּילִי f & m Hebrew
Means "my joy" in Hebrew.
GOLDA גּוֹלְדָּה, גאָלדאַ, גאָלדע f Yiddish
From Yiddish גאָלד (gold)
meaning "gold". This is the name of Tevye's wife in the musical 'Fiddler on the Roof' (1964). It was also borne by the Israeli prime minister Golda Meir (1898-1978).
GUY (2) גַּיְא m Hebrew
Alternate transcription of Hebrew גַּיְא
). This is the more common transcription.
HADAR הָדָר f & m Hebrew
Means "splendour, glory" in Hebrew.
HALLEL הָלֵּל f Hebrew
Derived from Hebrew הָלַל (halal)
meaning "praise". This is the name of a Jewish prayer, consisting of several psalms.
HANNA (1) חַנָּה f Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Polish, Ukrainian, Belarusian, German, Dutch, Icelandic, Hungarian, Hebrew
Form of HANNAH
in several languages.
HANNAH חַנָּה f English, Hebrew, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Arabic, Biblical
From the Hebrew name חַנָּה (Channah)
meaning "favour, grace", derived from the root חָנַן (chanan)
. 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
HAREL הַרְאֵל m Hebrew
Means "altar, mountain of God" in Hebrew. In the Hebrew Bible this word is applied to the altar in the temple in Jerusalem (Ezekiel 43:15).
HERSHEL הירשׁל, הירשל m American, Yiddish
Yiddish diminutive of HIRSH
. 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-German astronomer William Herschel (1738-1822).
HILA הִילָה f Hebrew
Means "halo, aura" in Hebrew, from the root הָלַל (halal)
meaning "to praise, to shine".
HILLEL הִלֵּל m Biblical, Hebrew, Biblical Hebrew
Derived from Hebrew הָלַל (halal)
meaning "praise". This name is mentioned briefly in the Old Testament as the father of the judge Abdon. It was also borne by the 1st-century BC Jewish scholar Hillel the Elder.
HIRSH הירשׁ, הירש m Yiddish
Means "deer" in Yiddish, a vernacular form of Tzvi
. The deer is particularly associated with the tribe of Naphtali
(see Genesis 49:21).
HODEL האָדל f Yiddish (Rare)
Diminutive of HODE
. This is the name of Tevye's second daughter in the musical 'Fiddler on the Roof' (1964), based on late 19th-century stories by Sholem Aleichem.
INBAL עִנְבָּל f Hebrew
Means "tongue of a bell" in Hebrew.
INBAR עִנְבָּר, עִינְבָּר f Hebrew
Means "amber" in Hebrew.
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.
IRIT עִירִית f Hebrew
Means "asphodel flower" in Hebrew.
IRVING m English, Scottish, Jewish
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
. A famous bearer was the Russian-American songwriter and lyricist Irving Berlin (1888-1989), whose birth name was Israel Beilin.
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), and later Sarah laughed when overhearing the same prophecy (see Genesis 18:12). 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
with his wife Rebecca
ISRAEL יִשְׂרָאֵל m Jewish, English, Biblical, Biblical Greek
From the Hebrew name יִשְׂרָאֵל (Yisra'el)
meaning "God contends", from the roots שָׂרָה (sarah)
meaning "to contend, to fight" and אֵל ('el)
meaning "God". 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.
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 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]
JUDITH יְהוּדִית f English, Jewish, French, German, Spanish, Biblical
From the Hebrew name יְהוּדִית (Yehudit)
meaning "Jewish woman", feminine of יְהוּדִי (yehudi)
, ultimately referring to a person from the tribe of Judah
. 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]
KEREN קֶרֶן f Hebrew
Means "horn" or "ray of light" in Hebrew.
KINNERET כִּנֶּרֶת f Hebrew
From the name of a large lake in northern Israel, usually called the Sea of Galilee in English. Its name is derived from Hebrew כִּנּוֹר (kinnor)
meaning "harp" because of its shape.
LAZER לייזער m Yiddish
Yiddish variant of ELIEZER
. This is the name of a character in the musical 'Fiddler on the Roof' (1964).
LEA לֵאָה f German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish, Slovene, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Hebrew
Form of LEAH
used in several languages.
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 be related to Akkadian littu
meaning "cow". 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 younger sister Rachel
, who he preferred. Leah later offered Jacob her handmaid Zilpah
in order for him to conceive more children.... [more]
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 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
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.
LIAT לִיאַת f Hebrew
Means "you are mine" in Hebrew.
LIHI לִיהִי, לִיהִיא f Hebrew
Means "she is mine" in Hebrew.
LIOR לִיאוֹר m & f Hebrew
Means "light for me" in Hebrew.
LIRON לִירוֹן m & f Hebrew
Means "song for me" or "joy for me" in Hebrew.
MAAYAN מַעֲיָן f & m Hebrew
Means "spring of water" in Hebrew.
MALACHI מַלְאָכִי m Hebrew, English, Biblical, Biblical Latin
From the Hebrew name מַלְאָכִי (Mal'akhi)
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.
MARGANITA מַרְגָנִיתָה f Hebrew
From the name of a type of flowering plant common in Israel, called the scarlet pimpernel in English.
MEIR מֵאִיר m Hebrew
Means "giving light" in Hebrew.