Origin: Hebrew גִּדְעוֹן
The name name could either be Hebrew for “destroyer” or “tree feller.” It is borne in the Old Testament by one of the Hebrew Judges, (Judges 6–8). He is also mentioned in Epistle to the Hebrews: Chapter 11 as an example of a man of faith.
In the Book of Mormon, it is borne by a powerful Nephite leader.
Regarded as a saint in the Catholic Church, it was occasionally used as a given name in Medieval England, but exploded in popularity after the Protestant Reformation, especially in Germany and the Netherlands.
Currently, Gideon is the 461st most popular male name in the United States and the 496th most popular in the Netherlands, (2010).
Other forms of the name include:
- Gideon Гидеон (Afrikaans/Dutch/English/Estonian/German/Scandinavian/Serbian)
- Gedeó (Catalan)
- Gédéon (French)
- Gid’on גִּדְעוֹן (Hebrew)
- Gedeon Гедео́н (Hungarian/Polish/Russian)
- Gedeone (Italian)
- Gideonas (Lithuanian)
- Gideão (Portuguese)
- Gedeón (Spanish)
The name was borne by the first discoverer of the dinosaur, Gideon Mantell (1790-1852).
Common English diminutives are Gid and Giddy.