By Omaislam – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

  • Origin: Arabic سودة
  • Meaning: uncertain
  • Gender: feminine
  • (SOW-dah)

The name is of uncertain meaning but is believed to be from the Arabic root S-W-D which can mean “blackness” or “large number of palm trees.”

The name was borne by one of the wives of the Prophet Muhammed known as Sawda bint Zama, considered one of the Mothers of Believers. Sawda bint Zama was a widow who married Prophet Muhammed at around the age of 50 to help care for his children.

Other transliterations are Sauda & Saudah.

Other forms include:

  • Seuda (Albanian)
  • Säüdä, Säüzä, Savda Сәүҙә (Bashkir)
  • Sevda (Bosnian)
  • Sawda Савда (Avar)
  • Sawdat Савдат (Chechen)
  • Saudah (Indonesian, Malaysian)
  • Sauda Сауда (Kazakh)
  • Sevde (Turkish)



MEV-11989216 - © - Mary Evans Picture Library

  • Origin: Turkish
  • Meaning: “the end; the last.”
  • Gender: masculine
  • (SOH-ner)

The name is derived from the Turkish element son (the end, the last), it was originally used in reference to a last born child. The name was quite popular in Turkey between 1980 & 1996, appearing in the Turkish most popular male names, it peaked at #59 in 1983.

Another form is Sonalp.


Wafi, Wafiya

The bathing boy painting

Wafi وَافِي is derived from the Arabic root W-F-Y meaning “faithful; loyal.”

In the Ismaili branch of Islam, it was borne by Ahmad al-Wafi, the 8th Ismaili Iman (766-822 CE).

Another form is the Turkish Vâfî.

Wafia and Wafiyaوفيّة  is the feminine form.


Zuleika, Zuleikha


  • Origin/Meaning: unknown زُلَيْخا זוליכה‎
  • Gender: female
  • (zoo-LAY-kah)
  • Usage: Arabic, Armenian, English, German, Italian, Ladino, Persian, Portuguese – Brazilian, Spanish

The name is of uncertain origin or meaning, since it appears in Muslim and Medieval Jewish tradition as the name of the wife of Potiphar (who is unnamed in the Old Testament), it is often suspected to be of Coptic origin, though the name is not traditionally used among contemporary Copts.

The wife of Potiphar is mentioned in the Bible as trying to seduce Joseph and later falsely claiming he tried to rape her, which leads to Joseph’s unjust imprisonment. In Medieval Islamic tradition, the story was reinterpreted as a popular love story, the subject of much poetry, she is named Zuleikha and her love for Joseph was interpreted by Sufi poets, especially Rumi and Hafez, to represent the longing the soul has for God. Zuleika is also attributed to be her name in the Sefer haYashar, also known as the Book of Jasher, a Jewish midrash of unknown authorship.

In the English-speaking world, the name first came into use in the early 19th-century, it was most likely popularized by Byron’s 1813 poem, The Bride of Abydos, in which it is the name of the heroine. It was also used by the German poet Goethe for his 1810 poem entitled, Book of Zuleika, in his collection of Eastern inspired poems called West–östlicher Divan. It is the name of the eponymous character in the 1911 novel, Zuleika Dobson by Max Beerbohn, which was later adapted into a musical.

The name is also used in Spanish-speaking countries and Brazil.

Other forms include:

  • Zulejka (Albanian, Bosnian)
  • Züleyxa (Azeri)
  • Zuleica (Catalan, Portuguese, Spanish)
  • Zulejha, Zulejka Зуле́йха, Зулейка (Chechen, Russian)
  • Zelikah (Dutch)
  • Zouleïkha (French)
  • Züleyha (Turkish)
  • Zulayho (Uzbek)

Other Arabic transliterations include: Zulaykha and Zulekha.

Spanish diminutives include: Zula & Zuzu.


Sondos, Sundus


  • Origin: Arabic سُنْدُس
  • Meaning: “fine silk; fine brocade.”
  • Gender: feminine
  • (SOON-doos; SOHN-dohs)

The name comes directly from the Arabic word for fine silk or a fine brocade.

Others transliterations include Sundes & Sundos.

A Turkish form is Sündüs.


Yasir, Yasira, Yashira


Yasir is a male Arabic name which is derived from the Arabic root y-s-r meaning “ease” or “right-handed.” The name was borne by Yasir ibn Amir (d. 615 C. E.), who is said to be the second martyr in Islam according to Islamic tradition.

Other transliterations include: Yassir & Yasser (Persian) & Yaser (Turkish).

It’s feminine form is Yasira and the Spanish off-shoot of Yashira has been popular in the Caribbean & Latin American since the 1980s.

Other feminine transliterations include: Yacerah, Yacirah, Yacireh, Yaseira & Yassira.


Tooba, Tuba, Tuğba


  • Origin: Arabic طُوْبَى
  • Meaning: “bliss; blessedness.”
  • Gender: feminine
  • (TOO-bah)

The name is derived from the Arabic root T-Y-B meaning “bliss; blessedness.” According to an Islamic hadith, this is a tree that grows in paradise.

Another form is Toba.

The city of Touba in Senegal gets its name from the legendary tree.

Other forms include:

  • Touba (Maghrebi-Arabic)
  • Tuğba (Turkish)
  • Tooba (Urdu)


Adhan, Azaan


The name is derived from the Arabic root ʾadhina أَذِنَ meaning “to listen, to hear, be informed about,” or ʾudhun (أُذُن), meaning “ear.” The Adhan, sometimes romanized as Azaan, is the name of the Islamic call to prayer, which is rung 5 time a day.

Currently, Azaan is the 406th Most Popular Male Name in England & Wales, (2018). Other transliterated forms include: Adaan, Adan, Adhaan, Athan, Edan & Edhaan.

Other forms include:

  • Ezani (Albanian)
  • Ezan Езан (Albanian, Bosnian, Bulgarian, Kurdish, Turkish)
  • Azan Азан (Azeri, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Malay, Tatar)
  • Azán Аза́н (Chechen)
  • Adan (Javanese)
  • Aadaan (Somali)
  • Azon Азон (Tajik)
  • Ezane (Zazaki)



The name is most likely derived from the Arabic root H26-SH-M  meaning “breaker or pulverizer.” This was a sobriquet for Hāshim ibn ‘Abd Manāf (circ. 5th-century C.E.) who was the great-grandfather of the Prophet Muhammad and found of the Banu Hashim tribe. Borne ‘Amr al-‘Ulā, ot is said he took this name because he used to break up his bread to share in a broth among pilgrims to Mecca and he is also said to have saved the poeple of Mecca from a famine by breaking up his bread into tiny crumbs.

Another transliteration is Hasheem

Currently, Hashim is the 436th Most Popular Male Name in England & Wales (2018).

Other forms include:

  • HIashim ХӀашим (Chechen)
  • Haysim (Indonesian)
  • Hashem هاشم (Persian)
  • Haşim (Turkish)



  • Gender: Masculine
  • Origin: Arabic
  • Meaning: Lion
  • Pronunciation: (HIE-dar; HAY-der)

From the Arabic حيدر‎; (lion), this was a nickname for the cousin and son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammed, Ali.

Currently, Haider is the 475th Most Popular Male Name in England & Wales (2018).

Variant transcriptions include: Hayder & Hyder.

Other forms include:

  • Hajdar (Albanian/Bosnian)
  • Heydər (Azeri)
  • Heydarحیدر (Persian)
  • Haydar (Turkish)