Andrew

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Greek
Meaning: “of man, belonging to man.”

The name is derived from the Greek Ανδρεασ (Andreas), which is derived from the Greek word, ανδροσ (andros), a genitive form of the word, ανηρ (aner), meaning, “man.” Hence, it would rougly translate to mean “belonging to man” or “of man.”

It was popularized by one of the twelve Apostles, who is now considered a popular Christian saint. It is suggested that Andreas was a nickname given to him, or possibly just a direct Greek translation of a Hebrew name that had a similar meaning, now lost to history.

Saint Andrew is considered the patron saint of Scotland, Russia, Greece and Romania. According to legend, he was martyred around the Black sea on an X shaped cross. His designated name-day is November 30.

The name has remained a staple in the U.S. top 100. As of 2011, he was the 16th most popular male name. His rankings and his various incarnations in other countries are as follows:

  • # 1 (Andrei, Romania, 2009)
  • # 3 (Andrea, Italy, 2010)
  • # 3 (Andrea, Italian-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 6 (Andreas, Estonia, 2011)
  • # 8 (Andria, Georgia, 2011)
  • # 8 (Andrej, Serbia, 2011)
  • # 9 (Andrey, Russia BabyCenter, 2011)
  • # 10 (Ondřej, Czech Republic, 2011)
  • # 10 (Andre/Andrew/Andrea/Andrei, Malta, 2011)
  • # 12 (Andreas, Norway, 2011)
  • # 25 (András, Hungary, 2011)
  • # 28 (Andreas, Denmark, 2011)
  • # 35 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 38 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 39 (Andrej, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 41 (Andraž, Slovenia, 2010)
  • # 46 (Andreas, Austria, 2010)
  • # 57 (Andrija, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 58 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 61 (Andres, Spain, 2010)
  • # 68 (Australia, NSW, 2011)
  • # 70 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 92 (Andrej, Slovenia, 2010)
  • # 98 (Andro, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 98 (Anders, Norway, 2011)
  • # 176 (Andres, United States, 2011)
  • # 241 (André, United States, 2011)
  • # 244 (Andrea, France, 2010)
  • # 388 (Andreas, France, 2010)
  • # 950 (Anders, United States, 2011)

Other forms are as follows (listed alphabetically by linguistic origin).

  • Andrees/Andries (Afrikaans/Old Dutch)
  • Andrea (Albanian/Italian)
  • Ndreu (Albanian)
  • Andreyas (Amharic)
  • Andraws/Andraous اندراوس (Arabic/Coptic/Lebanese/Syriac)
  • Andreas (Armenian/Czech/Estonian/German/Greek/Hungarian/Slovak/Scandinavian)
  • Andresu (Asturian)
  • Ander (Basque)
  • Anderl (Baverian)
  • Andrièu (Bearnais/Occitanian/Provencal)
  • Andrivet (Bearnais)
  • Andrej Андрэй (Belarusian)
  • Andreo/Andrev (Breton)
  • Andrei/Andrey Андрей (Bulgarian/Old Church Slavonic/Romanian/Russian/)
  • Andrejko (Bulgarian)
  • Andreu (Catalan/Aragonese)
  • Andria ანდრია (Corsican/Georgian/Sardinian)
  • Andrej (Croatian/Czech/Slovak/Slovene)
  • Andrija (Croatian/Serbian)
  • Andro/Jandre (Croatian)
  • Ondřej (Czech)
  • Anders (Danish/Norwegian/Swedish)
  • Dres/Dreves/Drevs (Danish)
  • Andries/Adrees (Dutch)
  • Andres (Estonian)
  • Ando/Andre/Andro/Andrus/Andu/Andi/Anti (Estonian)
  • Andras/Andrias (Faroese)
  • Andriou (Fijian)
  • Antero/Tero (Finnish)
  • Antti (Finnish)
  • Andris/Driess (Frisian)
  • André (French/Galician/Ladino/Portuguese)
  • Dria (Genevoese: Dialectical Italian form)
  • Anda (German: dialectical form, Northern Austria)
  • Anekelea (Hawaiian)
  • Andor/András/Endre (Hungarian)
  • Andris (Hungarian/Latvian)
  • Andrés (Icelandic/Spanish)
  • Aindréas/Aindriú (Irish)
  • Andrejs (Latvian)
  • Andriejus/Andrius (Lithuanian)
  • Andrija/Indri (Maltese)
  • Anaru (Maori)
  • Dreesi (Old Swiss German: Basel dialect)
  • Andrzej/Jędrzej (Polish: latter is a very old form)
  • Drewes (Plattdeutsch)
  • Andrea/Andreia/Andri/Andrin/Andriu (Romansch)
  • Ándá/Ándaras/Ándde/Ánde (Saami)
  • Aindrea/Aindreas/Anndra (Scottish)
  • Ondrej (Slovak)
  • Andraž (Slovene)
  • Handrij (Sorbian)
  • Andalea (Swahili)
  • Andriy Андрiй (Ukrainian)
  • Andras (Welsh)

Belorusian diminutives are: Andros, Andruk and Andrus. Czech masculine diminutive forms are Andy, Ondra, Ondrášek, Ondrejko, Ondrík, Ondřejek and Ondříček. French diminutive forms are: Dédé, Ti-Dré, Andi, DéaAndy. A German diminutive form is Andy/Andi and English are Andi, Andie, Andy, Dre and Drew. A Hungarian diminutive is Bandi and Polish diminutive forms are Andrzejek, Jędrek and Jędruś. Scotch diminutive form is Dand.

Note: Andrea is a common feminine form in most European countries outside of Italy and Albania, particularly in Germany and the Anglo-phone world. Whether this is a borrowing from the Italian and was changed, or a coincidental evolution, is unknown. What is known is that Andrea has been used in England as a feminine form since the 17th-century.

Feminine forms are (listed alphabetically by linguistic origin)

  • Andere (Basque)
  • Andrea (Basque/Breton/English/German/Spanish)
  • Andriva/Andriveta (Bearnais/Occitanian)
  • Andersine (Danish)
  • Andrine (Danish/Norwegian)
  • Drine (Danish)
  • Dreesje (Dutch)
  • Andrée (French)
  • Aanasi/Aanarsi/Aanta/Aantariarsi (Greenlandic)
  • Andreina (Italian)
  • Andzeja/Ondzeja (Polish: obscure)
  • Andréia (Portuguese: Brazilian)
  • Andreia (Portuguese: European)
  • Andriano (Provencal)
  • Andreea (Romanian)
  • Andrina (Romansch)
  • Andrijana (Serbo-Croatian)
  • Andreja (Slovene)
  • Andrietta/Andriette (Swedish/Danish: very rare)

Czech diminutive forms are: Adrejka, Andruška, Andra, Rea. English diminutive forms are Andi, Andy, Annie and Drea.

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Nathan

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: “give; given.”
Eng (NAY-than); Heb (NAH-TAHN); Fre (nah-TAWn)

The name is derived from the Hebrew נתן meaning, “given,” the implication is that “God has given” and as a result is sometimes considered a form of Natan’el.

In the Old Testament, the name was borne by a son of King David as well as a prophet. It is also the name of several other minor characters in the Old Testament.

The name was always popular among Jews, but did not catch on in the English-speaking world till the Protestant Reformation. In recent years, the name has become more prevalent in continental Europe.

Currently, Nathan is 28th most popular male name in the United States, (2011). His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 1 (France, 2010)
  • # 2 (Belgium, 2008)
  • # 10 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 27 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 27 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 29 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 38 (New Zealand, 2010)
  • # 48 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 57 (Brazil, 2010)
  • # 59 (Australia, NSW, 2011)
  • # 78 (Netherlands, 2011)
  • # 495 (Natan, France, 2010)

Other forms include:

  • Natan (Hebrew/Polish)
  • Nafan (Russian)
  • Nosson/Nussen (Yiddish)

In France, the designated name-day is March 7.

Gabriel, Gabriella

Origin: Hebrew גַבְרִיאֵל  Γαβριηλ
Meaning: “strong man of God.”
Eng (GABE-ree-el); (gah-bree-EL-ah); Fre (gah-bree-EL); Germ (GAHP-ree-el); Pol (GAHP-ryel)

The name is derived from the Biblical Hebrew, גַבְרִיאֵל (Gavri-el) meaning, “strong man of God.”

In Judeo-Christian religions, it is the name of a powerful archangel, who is often viewed as a messenger of God. He appears several times in the Old and New Testaments.

Among Christians, one of his most important messages was relayed to the Virgin Mary that she would be the mother of Jesus. Islamic tradition also believes the same, and in Islam, it was the angel Gabriel who revealed the Qu’ran, (through God), to Mohammed.

In Mormon theology, Gabriel is believed to be the embodiment of Noah in the afterlife.

Gabriel is a fairly common name among Christians, Jews and Muslims, making him an extremely cross-cultural portable name.

Currently, in the United States, his popularity has been rising. He is the 24th most popular male name, (2011). In other countries, his rankings in all his various forms are as follows:

  • # 2 (Gabriel(e), Liechtenstein, 2010)
  • # 3 (Brazil, 2011)
  • # 4 (Romania, 2009)
  • # 6 (Gabriele, Italy, 2009)
  • # 7 (France, 2010)
  • # 9 (Quebec, Canada, 2011)
  • # 19 (Croatia, 2009)
  • # 26 (Belgium, 2008)
  • # 28 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 28 (Mexico, 2010)
  • # 29 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 35 (Spain, 2010)
  • # 40 (Poland, 2009)
  • # 47 (Sweden, 2011)
  • # 48 (Norway, 2011)
  • # 52 (Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 78 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 95 (Australia, NSW, 2011)
  • # 124 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 189 (Djibril, France, 2010)
  • # 313 (Jibril, France, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Jibrail/Jibrīl جبرائيل ጂብሪል (Arabic/Ethiopian)
  • Gabriel გაბრიელი ገብርኤል
    (Armenian/Catalan/Coptic/Czech/Danish/English/Ethiopian/Finnish/French/Georgian/German/Norwegian/Polish/Portuguese/Romanian/Romansch/Spanish/Swedish)
  • Gavrik (Armenian)
  • Cəbrayıl/Cibril (Azeri)
  • Gawryil Гаўрыіл (Belarusian)
  • Džibril/Džebrail (Bosnian)
  • Gavrail Гавраил (Bulgarian)
  • Zheberejil Жәбірейіл (Central Asian)
  • Gabrijel (Croatian/Maltese/Serbian)
  • Gabriël (Dutch)
  • Gaabriel (Estonian)
  • Gabrel (Ethiopian)
  • Kaapo/Kaapro (Finnish)
  • Gabriél Γαβριήλ (Greek)
  • Gavril Γαβριηλ (Greek)
  • Gavriel גַּבְרִיאֵל (Hebrew)
  • Gábriel (Hungarian)
  • Gábor (Hungarian)
  • Gabríel (Icelandic)
  • Jibril (Indonesian)
  • Gaibriéil (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Gabo/Gabbo (Italian)
  • Gabriele (Italian: more common form)
  • Gabriellino (Italian)
  • Gabriello (Italian)
  • Gabrio (Italian)
  • Cibrayîl (Kurdish)
  • Gabrielus (Latin)
  • Gabriels (Latvian)
  • Gabrielius (Lithuanian)
  • Jibrail (Malaysian)
  • Gavriilu Гаврїилъ (Old Church Slavonic)
  • Khabbriele (Puglian)
  • Gabin (Provençal)
  • Gavril Гавриил (Romanian/Russian)
  • Crabiele/Gabilele/Gabriello (Sardinian)
  • Cabbrieli (Sicilian)
  • Gabri’el ܠܒܪܝܐܝܠ (Syrian)
  • Gebrael (Syrian)
  • Cebrâîl (Turkish)
  • Gavrel גַאבְֿרֶעל (Yiddish)

English short form is Gabe.

Its feminine form of Gabriella/Gabriela is also rising in popularity. Currently, Gabriella is the 34th most popular female name in the United States, (2011). Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 3 (Gabriela, Bulgaria, 2009)
  • # 5 (Gabrielė, Lithuania, 2011)
  • # 5 (Gabrielle, Philippines, 2011)
  • # 7 (Gabriela, Columbia, 2011)
  • # 8 (Gabriela, Romania, 2009)
  • # 9 (Gabriela, Puerto Rico, 2011)
  • # 10 (Gabriela, Brazil, 2010)
  • # 13 (Gabriela, Poland, Warsaw, 2010)
  • # 19 (Gabriela, Poland, 2009)
  • # 28 (Gabrijela, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 30 (Gabriela, Mexico, 2010)
  • # 30 (Gabrielly, Brazil, 2010)
  • # 36 (Gabriela, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 38 (Gabriela, Chile, 2010)
  • # 64 (Australia, NSW, 2011)
  • # 64 (Gabriela, Spain, 2010)
  • # 67 (Gabrielle, France, 2010)
  • # 72 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 94 (Gabrielle, Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 119 (Gabrielle, United States, 2011)
  • # 466 (France, 2010)

Other feminine forms include:

  • Gebre’elwa ገብርኤሏ (Amharic/Ethiopian)
  • Gabriela (Bulgarian/Croatian/Czech/German/Polish/Portuguese/Romanian/Scandinavian/Slovak/Spanish)
  • Brielle (Cajun: abbreviated form of Gabrielle)
  • Gabrijela (Croatian/Serbian)
  • Gabriëlle (Dutch)
  • Briella/Briela (English)
  • Gabrielle (French/English)
  • Gabria (Italian)
  • Gabrielina (Italian)
  • Gabriella (Italian/English/Hungarian/Scandinavian: more common form in Italy)
  • Gabrielė (Lithuanian)
  • Gavriila Гавриила (Russian)

Czech diminutives are: Gába, Gabika, Gábina, Gabrina and Gabby.

A Polish diminutive is Gabrysia (gah-BRIH-shah).

English short forms are: Gabby and Ella.

Designated name-days are: February 10/27 (Poland), February 19 (Sweden), March 24 (Czech/Finland/Poland/Slovakia/Sweden), September 29 (France/Germany), December 12 (Hungary)

Raphael

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Hebrew רָפָאֵל Ραφαηλ
Meaning: “God is healer.”
Fre (ra-fa-EL); Eng (RAF-ee-el; RAY-fee-əl)

The name is found in Judeo-Christian and Islamic legend as the name of a major archangel. In the Bible, he is mentioned in the Book of Tobit, which is considered canonical in the Roman Catholic, Orthodox and Anglican tradition. Due to Raphael’s deliverance of Sarah from the demon Asmodeus (who killed every husband she married before consumation), Raphael has been invoked as a matchmaker by Catholics.

Raphael also appears in the non-canonical Book of Enoch in which he is responsible for binding the fallen angel Azazel

In Islamic tradition, he is known as Israfel/Israfil and it is believed that he will blow the trumpet on Judgement Day.

It is interesting to note that the modern Hebrew word for a medical doctor is  דוֹקטוֹר (rophe), compare to the first element of Raphael.

Raphael is currently a trend across Europe, in France, Raphaël is the 11th most popular male name, (2010). His rankings in his various forms are as follows:

  • # 3 (Liechtenstein, 2010)
  • # 11 (Rafael, Brazil, 2010)
  • # 17 (Austria, 2010)
  • # 40 (Rafał, Warsaw, Poland, 2010)
  • # 48 (Rafał, Poland, 2009)
  • # 50 (German-speaking, Switzerland, 2010)
  • # 54 (Raphaël, Belgium, 2008)
  • # 55 (Rafael, Spain, 2010)
  • # 56 (Rafael, Croatia, 2009)
  • # 63 (Rafael, France, 2010)
  • # 189 (Rafaël, Netherlands, 2011)
  • # 274 (Rafael, United States, 2011)
  • # 668 (United States, 2011)

Its feminine form of Rafaela is currently the 8th most popular female name in Brazil, (2010), while the French form of Raphaëlle ranked in as the 273rd most popular female name in France, (2010).

Other forms of the masculine include:

  • Rafael (Albanian/Armenian/Catalan/Croatian/Czech/Finnish/Hungarian/Portuguese/Romanian/Romansch/Scandinavian/Slovene/Spanish)
  • Raphel ሩፋኤል (Amharic/Ethiopian)
  • Rupha(e)l ራፋኤል (Amharic/Ethiopian)
  • Israfil اسرافيل, Исрафил (Arabic/Central Asian: used among Muslims)
  • Rapael რაფაელ (Armenian/Georgian)
  • Rafail Рафаил Ραφαήλ (Bulgarian/Greek/Macedonian/RomanianRussian/Serbian)
  • Rafel (Catalan)
  • Raphael (Coptic/English/German)
  • Rafaël (Dutch)
  • Raafael (Estonian)
  • Raphaël (French)
  • Raiféal (Gaelic)
  • Raffaele (Italian)
  • Raffaello (Italian)
  • Raffaelino (Italian)
  • Îsrafîl (Kurdish)
  • Rafla (Lebanese/Syrian: used among Christians)
  • Rafaelis (Lithuanian)
  • Rapolas (Lithuanian)
  • Rafel (Maltese)
  • Rafał (Polish)
  • Arrafieli (Sardinian)
  • Rafiele (Sardinian)
  • İsrafil (Turkish)
  • Rafayil Рафаї́л (Ukrainian)
Common diminiutives are: Raf (Dutch); Rafe (English); Ralph (English); Rafinha (Brazilian-Portuguese); Rafa (Spanish).
Feminine forms include:
  • Rafaela (Croatian/Macedonian/Portuguese/Romansch/Slovene/Spanish)
  • Raphaëlle (French)
  • Raphaela (German)
  • Raphaele (German)
  • Raffaella (Italian)
  • Raffaellina (Italian)
The name was also notably borne by Raphael, or Raffaello Sanzio (1483–1520), an Italian master painter.

Naim

The name could be from the Hebrew נעים‎ meaning, (pleasant) or the Arabic نعیم‎ (tranquil).

As of 2009, Naïm (Maghrebin orthograph) was the 182nd most popular male name in France.

A feminine form is Naima.

Solal

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Hebrew
Meaning: “guide; barefoot.”

The name caused quite a stir when Jean Sarkozy and his wife Jessica, chose this name for their first child. French news reports claimed that the couple named their child after the eponymous hero of Swiss author, Albert Cohen’s 1930 book.

The name also honours the couples’ Sephardic roots as Solal seems to be an especially common name among Spanish Jews. There are a few theories as to the name’s origins. One is that it is derived from the Hebrew, יָחֵף (sovlel) meaning, “barefoot.” Other sources suggest it means “the one who guides,” though I couldn’t find the actual Hebrew link for the latter.

As of 2009, Solal was the 337th most popular male name in France.

 

Joseph, Josephine

Gender: Masculine
Origin: Hebrew יוֹסֵף
Meaning: “He shall add; God shall add.”
Eng (JOH-sef)

The name is derived from the Biblical Hebrew male name, יוֹסֵף (Yosef).

In the Old Testament, the name is borne by the first son of Rachel and the eleventh son of Jacob. After being sold off as a slave by his brothers, Joseph ended up in Egypt, later becoming an important advisor to the pharoah.

In the New Testament, it is borne by the husband of the Virgin Mary. Known as St. Joseph among Catholics, he is a particularly revered saint among Italian Catholics, considered the patron saint of stepfathers and carpenters.

Another important character with this name in the New Testament, is Joseph of Arimathea, a disciple of Christ and also the man who provided a burial spot for Jesus after his death.

The name has always been very prevalent throughout Europe and the Middle East.

In the United States, its popularity can be due to several factors: it was common among both various Christian and Jewish immigrants. The name is even very common among Muslim families.

Currently, Joseph is the 20th most popular male name in the United States, (2010). In fact, Joseph has never ranked outside of the Top 20. Common English nicknames are Joe and Joey. His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 1 (Yusif, Azerbaijan, 2012)
  • # 1 (Yusuf, Turkey, 2010)
  • # 2 (Yusuf, Tajikistan, 2009)
  • # 2 (Youssef, Tunisia)
  • # 3 (Yousef, Arab-World, 2011)
  • # 4 (José, Equitorial Guinea, 2011)
  • # 5 (Joosep, Estonia, 2011)
  • # 5 (Isle of Man, 2009)
  • # 5 (Yousouf, Israel, among Muslim and Christian boys, 2010)
  • # 5 (José, Philippines, 2011)
  • # 5 (Jose, Puerto Rico, 2010)
  • # 7 (Youssef, Morocco)
  • # 8 (Josip, Croatia, 2010)
  • # 8 (Yosef, Israel, among Druze boys, 2004)
  • # 9 (Yosef, Israel, among Jewish boys, 2010)
  • # 14 (Giuseppe, Italy, 2010)
  • # 15 (England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 16 (Joseph/Giuseppe, Malta, 2010)
  • # 29 (Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 36 (New Zealand, 2010)
  • # 37 (Ireland, 2010)
  • # 41 (Australia, NSW, 2010)
  • # 41 (József, Hungary, 2010)
  • # 43 (José, Spain, 2010)
  • # 44 (Scotland, 2010)
  • # 51 (José, United States, 2010)
  • # 62 (Josef, Sweden, 2010)
  • # 68 (Josip, Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2010)
  • # 68 (Josep, Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 71 (José, Catalonia, 2010)
  • # 74 (Canada, BC, 2010)
  • # 149 (France, 2009)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Josef (Afrikaans)
  • Isuf (Albanian)
  • Jozef/Jozif (Albanian: Zef is a diminutive form)
  • Sepp (Alsatian)
  • Hovsep Հովսեփ (Armenian)
  • Yūsuf/Youssef/Yussef يوسف, (Arabic)
  • Yusif/Yusuf/Usub (Azeri)
  • Joseba/Josepe (Basque)
  • Joseph ДЖО́ЗЕФ (Belarusian/English/German/French)
  • Josip (Bosnian/Croatian: Joso, Jozo and Joško are diminutive forms)
  • Jusuf (Bosnian)
  • Yosif Йосиф (Bulgarian)
  • Josep (Catalan, Pep is a common diminutive form)
  • Ghjaseppu (Corsican)
  • Jozèf (Creole/Haitian)
  • Josef (Czech)
  • Joep (Dutch: originally a diminutive form, now used as an independent given name)
  • Joop (Dutch: originally a diminutive form, used as an independent given name)
  • Joost (Dutch: originally a diminutive form, now used as an independent given name)
  • Jozef (Dutch)
  • Joseph (English/French/German)
  • Joséphin (French: obscure)
  • Joosep (Estonian)
  • Jósef (Faroese)
  • Jooseppi (Finnish)
  • Juuso (Finnish)
  • Bepùt/Bepi/Bepo (Fruilian)
  • Xosé (Galician)
  • Ioseb იოსებ (Georgian)
  • Ioses/Joses Ιωσης (Greek: Biblical)
  • Iōséph Ἰωσήφ/Iosepos, Iosipos Ιώσηπος (Greek: Modern)
  • Yosef יוסף (Hebrew)
  • Isuppu (Hindi)
  • József (Hungarian: Jóska is the diminutive form)
  • Yusuf/Yusup/Ucup (Indonesian)
  • Giuseppe (Italian: diminutive forms are Beppe, Peppe and Peppino)
  • Giuseppino (Italian)
  • Pino (Italian: diminutive form now used as an independent given name)
  • Seosamh (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Ujöp (Ladino)
  • Iosephus/Josephus (Latin)
  • Jāzeps (Latvian)
  • Gioxeppe (Ligurian)
  • Joep (Limburgish)
  • Juozapas (Lithuanian)
  • Juozas (Lithuanian)
  • Giüsèpp (Lombard: Pèpp and Bèpp are diminutive forms)
  • Ousep/Ousef/Yosef (Malayalam)
  • Ouseppachen/Kochaappu (Malayalam)
  • Ġużeppi (Maltese: Ġużi, Ġuż, Peppi, Pepp, Żeppi and Żepp are diminutives)
  • Hohepa (Maori)
  • Jupp (Moselfrench)
  • Josef (Norwegian)
  • Josèp (Occitanian)
  • Iosifu Іѡсифъ (Old Church Slavonic)
  • Yūsuf/Youssef/Yussef يوسف, (Persian)
  • Joosef (Plattdeutsch)
  • Józef (Polish)
  • Gèseppe (Puglian)
  • Jüppes/Jüppke (Ripoarisch)
  • Iosif (Romanian)
  • Gisep (Romansch)
  • Iosif/Osip Иосиф (Russian)
  • Jisepu (Sardinian)
  • Josif Јосиф (Serbian)
  • Seòsaidh (Scots-Gaelic)
  • Giuseppi (Sicilian)
  • U’Seppi (Sicilian)
  • Zefel/ Zeflik (Silesian)
  • Jozef (Slovakian)
  • Jožef/Jože (Slovene)
  • Sefer (Swabian)
  • José (Spanish/Portuguese: Pepe and Pepito are the diminutive forms)
  • Yusup/Usup/Ucup (Sudanese)
  • Yoseppu (Tamil)
  • Yusuf (Turkish)
  • Yosyp (Ukrainian)
  • Josep (Valencian)
  • Juxepe (Venetian: diminutives are Bepi and Bepin)
  • Joseff (Welsh)
  • Yissl/Jayzl/Yussel (Yiddish)

Bavarian diminutive forms are Pepi, Perperl, SeppSeppiSeppl and Söpp.

Other German diminutives include: Seb, Seffi and Beppal is a Swiss-German diminutive form.

A Rheinish diminutive is Jupp.

Czech diminutives are: Pepík, Pepek, Pepan and Pepin.

Dutch short forms are Jef, Zef and Jos.

A common Hebrew short form is Yosi.

Italian diminutives and its dialectical forms include: Scepp (Calabrian); Pepp’, Pè, Peppiniéllo, Peppì, Peppinié (Campanese); Gioxe, Bepi, Bepin (Ligurian); Gepe and Pinin (Piedmontese); Seppud, Bapèpp, Peppo, Peppin, G’sip, Giusè, Pinucc, Peppon, ‘Mbà Peppe and P’pen (Puglian); Peppe and Pippo (Sicilian); Bepi and Beppe (Tuscan) and  Bepìn and Bepo (Venetian).

Standard Italian diminutives are: Bepi, Beppe, Beppino, Geppetto, Geppino, Peppe, Peppenuzzo, Peppi, Peppino, Peppinello, Peppiniello, Peppinetto, Peppo, Peppuccio, Pino Pinello, Pinuccio, Peppone, Pippo Puccio and Seppe.

Portuguese diminutives include: Zé, Zézinho, Zéca and Zécinha.

Slovakian diminutives are: Jožko, Jojo and Dodo.

Slovene short forms are: Pepe, Pepi and Pepc.

A common Spanish compound name is José Maria

Its more common feminine form of Josephine became prevalent throughout Europe at the end of the 18th-century and at the beginning of the 19th-century, due to the popularity of Josephine Bonaparte, (1763-1814), the wife of Napoleon.

Originally, Joséphine was a French diminutive form of Josèphe. Joséphine became the standard form around the same time Josephine Bonaparte became famous and has remained the more common French feminine form of Joseph, since.

Currently, in the United States, she is the 186th most popular female name, (2010). In the Netherlands, she was the 153rd most popular female name, (2010).

Other feminine forms include:

  • Jozefina (Albanian)
  • Josepa (Catalan: diminutive is Pepa)
  • Josipa (Croatian)
  • Josefa (Czech/Portuguese/Spanish)
  • Josefina (Czech)
  • Jozefien (Dutch)
  • Joetta (English)
  • Josephina/Josephine (English)
  • Josefiina (Finnish)
  • Josée (French)
  • Josèphe (French)
  • Joséphine (French)
  • Josette (French)
  • Josefine (German/Danish)
  • Josepha (German)
  • Iosiphina Ιωσηφίνα (Greek: Modern)
  • Jozefa (Hungarian/Slovene)
  • Jósefína (Icelandic)
  • Seosaimhín (Irish-Gaelic)
  • Giosetta (Italian)
  • Giuseppa/Giuseppina (Italian)
  • Iosephina (Latin)
  • Ġużeppa (Maltese: Ġuża is the diminutive form)
  • Józefa (Polish)
  • Józefina (Polish)
  • Jožefina/Jožefa/Joža (Slovene)
  • Jožica (Slovene: originally a diminutive form, now used as an independent given name)
  • Josefa/Josefina (Spanish)
  • Josefin/Josefine (Swedish)
  • Yosipa/Osipa/Yuzefa (Ukrainian)

Croatian diminutive form is Pepica.

Czech diminutives are: Pepa, Pepca, Pepicka, Pepina, Pepka, Jóža, Jožka and Jóžin.

Common English short forms for Josephine include: Fifi, Jo, Jody, Jojo, Josie and Posey.

Common French diminutive forms are Fifi and Fifette.

German diminutives are Pepa.

Italian diminutives are: Giusy, Pina, Pinuccia, Pinella and Pippa.

Slovene diminutive form is Pepca

Marie-Josée is a common French compound form.

Designated name-days are March 19 and May 1.

Alma

The name has several different origins and meanings. Its usage as a name in Britain skyrocketed around 1854, after the victorious Battle of Alma, which took place near the Alma River in the Crimea.

In this case, the name is derived from the Tatar word for, “apple.” It is interesting to note that Alma, till this day, is a traditional and common female name across Central Asia, especially among Russian-Tatars, Kazakhs and Uzbeks. In Uzbek, it appears in the form of Olma. Alma is also the word for apple in Hungarian, where it is also occasionally used as a female given name.

The name also appears in Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queen as the name of a minor character, the head of the House of Temperance in Book 2. In this case, the name is most likely taken from the Portuguese and Spanish word for “soul.”

Alma appears sparingly as a female given name in Renaissance Italy, in this case, it is most likely derived from the Latin, almus, meaning, “nourishing”; hence the term, alma mater (fostering mother). This usage of the name also appears as an epithet for a few Roman goddess, particularly Venus and Ceres.

It is the name of a book in The Book of Mormon, but in this case, it is masculine, being the name of two prophets, a father and son; Alma the Younger being the Chief Judge among the Nephites.

Other etymologies which have been suggested, include:

  • It is from the Greek, αλμη (salt water)
  • It is from an Arabic source, al-ma, meaning, (the water).
  • It is a contracted form of Amalia and Amalberga.

The name is used in virtually every European country, including Scandinavia, where it is currently very trendy.

As of 2010, Alma was the 8th most popular female in the Faroe Islands. Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 23 (Sweden, 2010)
  • # 24 (Denmark, 2010)
  • # 48 (Norway, 2010)
  • # 49 (Bosnia & Herzegovina, 2010)
  • # 80 (Spain, 2010)
  • # 849 (United States, 2010)

 

Rebecca

Gender: Feminine
Origin: debated
Meaning: debated
Eng (re-BEK-ka)

Rebecca is the English form of the Biblical Hebrew רִבְקָה (Rivqah), which possibly means “snare” or “noose” possibly referring to captivation or beauty, but may also be of an unknown Aramaic source.

The name is borne in the Bible by the Aramean wife of Isaac and the mother of Jacob and Esau. She is considered a Jewish matriarch.

In the English speaking world, the name was seldom used until the Protestant Reformation, where it became an exceedingly popular name. Pocahantas even took this as her Christian name upon her baptism.

Currently, Rebekka is the 3rd most popular female name in Faroe Islands, (2010). Her rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 20 (Rebecca, Italy, 2010)
  • # 24 (Rebeka, Hungary, 2010)
  • # 37 (Rebecca, Northern Ireland, 2010)
  • # 38 (Rebecca, Scotland, 2010)
  • # 48 (Rebecca, Ireland, 2010)
  • # 75 (Rebeka, Slovenia, 2010)
  • # 75 (Rebecca, Sweden, 2010)
  • # 82 (Rebecca, England/Wales, 2010)
  • # 137 (Rebecca, United States, 2010)
  • # 290 (Rebecca, Netherlands, 2010)
  • # 304 (Rebecca, France, 2009)
  • # 404 (Rebekah, United States, 2010)

Other forms of the name include:

  • Rafqa ﻪﻔﻴﻓﺍﺭ (Arabic/Syriac)
  • Rebeka Ребека (Bosnian/Bulgarian/Czech/Hungarian/Lithuanian/Polish/Slovak/Slovene)
  • Rebeca (Catalan/Ladino/Portuguese/Romanian/Spanish)
  • Rebekka (Dutch/Ethiopian/Finnish/German/Scandinavian)
  • Rebecca (English/Italian/Scandinavian)
  • Becca (English)
  • Reba (English)
  • Rebekah (English)
  • Rébecca (French)
  • Rebèque (French)
  • Rebekah (Greek: Biblical)
  • Revekka Ρεβέκκα (Greek: Modern)
  • Rifqa (Hebrew: Biblical)
  • Riva/Rivka רִבְקָה, רבקה אמנו (Hebrew: Modern)
  • Réba (Hungarian)
  • Ribka (Indonesian)
  • Ryfka (Polish-Yiddish)
  • Rebecke (Plattdeutsch)
  • Revekka Реве́кка (Russian)
  • Reveka (Serbian)
  • Rebecka (Swedish)
  • Rifka/Riwka (Yiddish)

The name was the subject of the 1938 British novel of the same name, written by Daphne du Maurier. It is also borne by a 19th-century Lebanese Christian saint. The designated name-day is March 23 (France).

Common English diminutive forms include: Becca, Beck, Becky, Bex, Reba and Rebi.

Sources

  1. Genesis 22:20-23
  2. http://www.ou.org/torah/ti/5764/toldot64.htm
  3. http://www.behindthename.com/name/rebecca
  4. http://www.askoxford.com/firstnames/rebecca?view=uk

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).