Leah


Gender: Feminine
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: debated
Eng (LEE-uh); Heb (LAY-ah)

The name is found in the Old Testament as the name of the sister of Rachel and the first wife of Jacob.

In Jewish tradition, Leah is considered a matriarch and among Christians, she is believed to be the direct ancestor of Jesus.

Its exact meaning and origins are debated. Many scholars believe that it is from the Hebrew לְאָה (le’ah), meaning, “weary.” Other sources have suggested that it is from an Akkadian source meaning, “lady; mistress.”

In the English speaking world and on the continent, it was not common outside the Jewish community until after the Protestant Reformation.

Currently, Leah ranks in as the 24th most popular female name, (2010) and this is the highest the name has ranked in U.S. naming history. She is quite popular in other countries, her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 1 (Lea, Faroe Islands, 2010)
  • # 1 (Léa, Monaco, 2009)
  • # 1 (Lea, Romansch-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 2 (Léa, French-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 2 (Lea, Liechtenstein, 2010)
  • # 3 (Léa, France, 2009)
  • # 3 (Lea, Luxembourg, 2009)
  • # 5 (Lea, Austria, 2010)
  • # 5 (Lea, German-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 5 (Léa, Belgium, 2010)
  • # 5 (Lea/Leah, Germany, 2011)
  • # 9 (Lea, Malta, 2010)
  • # 14 (Leah, Norway, 2010)
  • # 15 (Leah, Ireland, 2010)
  • # 17 (Lea, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 20 (Leah, Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 25 (Leah, Scotland, 2010)
  • # 39 (Lea, Slovenia, 2010)
  • # 46 (Lea, Denmark, 2010)
  • # 49 (Lea, Sweden, 2010)
  • # 50 (Leah, England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 55 (Leia, Sweden, 2010)
  • # 56 (Leah, Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 59 (Lia, Slovenia, 2010)
  • # 63 (Leah, New Zealand, 2010)
  • # 89 (Lea, Norway, 2010)
  • # 95 (Lia, Hungary, 2010)
  • # 96 (Leah, Australia, NSW, 2010)
  • # 299 (Lia, France, 2009)
  • # 320 (Leia, France, 2009)
  • # 356 (Lia, Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 386 (Leah, Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 418 (Lea, Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 566 (Lea, United States, 2010)
  • # 830 (Leia, United States, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Lia (Catalan/Czech/Hungarian/Italian/Portuguese/Biblical Latin/Slovene)
  • Lea (Czech/Dutch/Estonian/Finnish/German/Hungarian/Icelandic/Norwegian/Polish/Romansch/Scandinavian/Slovak/Slovene/Spanish/Turkish)
  • Leah (English/Ethiopian/German/Scandinavian)
  • Leea (Finnish)
  • Leija (Finnish)
  • Leja (Finnish)
  • Lessu (Finnish)
  • Léa (French)
  • Leaette/Liette (French: originally a diminutive form, used as an independent given name, especially among French Huguenots).
  • Lía (Galician/Spanish)
  • Leia Λεια (Greek: Biblical)
  • Léá (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Lija/Liya Лия (Russian)
  • Lejá (Sami)

Common Czech diminutives include:

  • Leana
  • Leí
  • Leonka
  • Leoša
  • Leuška
  • Leúšik
  • Lienka
  • Liuška

The designated name-days are: January 5 (Estonia/Finland), March 22 (France), April 29 (Slovak), June 26 (Sweden).

Advertisements

One thought on “Leah

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s