Asher

Gender: Male
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: “happy, blessed.”
Eng (ASH-er); Heb (ah-SHAIR)

The name is found in Genesis as the name of the son of Jacob and Zilpah. He was the founder of the tribe of Asher and had played a role in selling his brother, Joseph, into slavery. Asher had four sons and a daughter and had eventually settled in Canaan.

The name, Asher is believed to come from the Hebrew, Osher meaning “happy,” or “blessing,” though some scholars have argued that the name is actually a male counterpart of the Assyrian, Asherah: said to mean “she who walks on the sea.” Others suggest that it could be a cognate of the Assyrian, male name, Ashur.

Both Asherah and Ashur are related and were the names of an ancient Sumerian god and goddess, both of which I will go further into in another installment of Asherah in the near future.

The name has always been popular among Jewish families. Ash is usually the prefered nickname. Due to the popularity of other Ash names such as Ashton, the name is increasing in popularity in the United States, currently he comes in at # 206 in the U.S. top 1000 and seems to be rising.

Other forms include the

  • Aser (Biblical Greek/Latin/French/Spanish)
  • Asyer (Indonesian)
  • Anschell/ Anshel (Yiddish: diminutive forms)