Meaning: “God is with us.”
The name is composed of the Hebrew elements, אֵל (‘EL), meaning “God” and עִמָּנוּ (ʻImmānū), meaning “with us”. The name is a theophoric name, mentioned in Isaiah 7:14 and Isaiah 8:8. It subsequently appears again, in the New Testament, in Matthew, which is actually a quotation of Isaiah.
In Christian tradition, the reference to Emmanuel by Isaiah is believed to be a prophesy of the coming Messiah or Christ, many Jewish scholars disagree and believe that “Emmanuel” in Isaiah is in reference to either the son of Ahaz, Isaiah or Hezekiah. Regardless, the name has been common among both communities, and among Christians, the name is often enough bestowed upon a child borne around the Christmas season.
The name came into usage in the English speaking world the 16th-century, and has always been popular in the Latin speaking countries, especially in Spain and Portugal, and to a lesser extent, France and Italy.
In 2008, the name came in as the # 146th most popular male name, while Manuel stood in as the 186th most popular. Manuel was also the 40th most popular male name in Chile, and the 15th most popular in Spain during 2006.
The above form is used in French and English. Other forms include the following:
- Amanuel (Aramaic)
- Imanol (Basque)
- Manel (Catalan/Portuguese)
- Manuel (French/German/Italian/Portuguese/Romanian/Scandinavian/Spanish)
- Emanuel (German/Czech/Dutch/Polish/Romanian/Scandinavian/Serbo-Croatian/Slovene)
- Immanuel עִמָּנוּאֵל (German/Finnish/Hebrew)
- Emmanouil Εμμανουηλ/Manouel Μανουηλ (Greek: Modern)
- Manolis / Μανόλης (Greek: Modern)
- Emánuel/Immánuel (Hungarian)
- Emmanúel (Icelandic)
- Imanuel (Indonesian)
- Emanuele (Italian)
- Emanuello (Italian: obscure)
- Manuele (Italian)
- Emmanuhel (Latin)
- Emanuelis (Lithuanian)
- Manwel (Maltese)
- Manoel (Portuguese: Brazilian)
- Enmanuèl (Provencal)
- Manuèl (Provencal)
- Immanuil Иммануил (Russian/Ukrainian)
- Manolo (Spanish)
Feminine forms are:
- Emmanuelle (French)
- Manuela (German/Italian/Portuguese/Romanian/Spanish)
- Emanuela/Emanuella (Italian)
- Manwela (Maltese)
- Manoela (Portuguese: Brazilian)
- Emanuela (Spanish/Polish/Portuguese)
- Emanuelita/Manuelita (Spanish/Portuguese: initially diminutives forms, used as independent given names)
- Manola (Spanish/Portuguese)
Its designated name-days are March 26 (Finland/Italy/Sweden) and on December 25 (France)
Popular French diminutives are Manu (for both male and females) and Émane (Female), the English is usually Manny.