- Origin: Phoenician/Punic
- Meaning: “grace of baal.”
- Gender: masculine
The name is composed of the Semitic elements, hanno (grace) and ba’al (Ba’al, Lord). It is a Semitic theophoric name, the equivalent of the Hebrew Haniel (grace of God). It is recorded in the Punic as 𐤇𐤍𐤁𐤏𐤋. The name is borne by Hannibal Barca, (3rd-century BCE), the Carthaginian general who attempted to invade Rome.
The name was supposedly common among the Phoenicians; it is the name of several other Phoenician personages recorded in history.
The name has been in and out of occasional use throughout Europe and is commonly used among Assyrian families.
Other forms include:
- Hanibali ჰანიბალი (Albanian, Georgian)
- Aníbal (Aragonese, Portuguese/Spanish)
- Hannibal Ганнібал Հաննիբալ (Armenian, Assyrian/Neo-Aramaic, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Maltese, Polish, Scandinavian, Ukrainian)
- Hanibal Ханибал (Basque, Bulgarian, Croatian, Macedonian, Serbian, Slovenian)
- Ganibal Ганібал (Belarusian, Moksha)
- Anníbal, Hanníbal (Catalan)
- Gannibal Ганнибал (Chuvash, Russian)
- Annibal (French, Occitanian)
- Hannabal (Gaelic)
- Annibas Ἀννίβας (Greek)
- Hannibál (Hungarian)
- Anniball (Lombard)
- Hannibalas (Lithuanian)
- Anible (Mirandese)
- Hamdall (Norwegian)
- Annibballi (Sicilian)
Italian feminine forms are: Annibala & Annibalina.
In contemporary literature, it is the name of Dr. Hannibal Lecter in the crime thrillers by Thomas Harris.