Origin: Arabic أمير Амир
Meaning: “prince; commander”
The name is derived from the Arabic word for a prince, ruler, commander or admiral. In the Islamic world, it is used as an honorific title of nobility, office or someone of high eminence. The word itself is derived from the Arabic root amr meaning, “to command.”
The early Islamic caliphs used the title Amir al-Muninin meaning, “Commander of the Faithful”, a reference of their leadership over the adherants of the Islamic faith.
The title was assumed by other Islamic rulers, including sheiks and sultans throughout Central Asia all the way into Saudi Arabic.
The leader of a group of pilgrims to Mecca is often referred to as an amir.
It is used as a given name throughout the Islamic world.
As of 2010, Amir was the 20th most popular male name in Kazakhstan, (2010). His rankings in other other countries are as follows:
- # 13 (Emir, Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2010)
- # 28 (Emir, Turkey, 2010)
- # 66 (Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2010)
- # 155 (the Netherlands, 2010)
- # 221 (France, 2009)
- # 278 (United States, 2010)
Other forms of the name include:
- Emir (Albanian/Bosnian/Turkish)
- Əmir (Azeri)
- Amirs (Latvian)
Feminine forms include, Emira (Albanian/Bosnian/Turkish) and Amira.
Amir can also be a Hebrew male אָמִיר name meaning, “tree top.”