Origin: Hebrew אוּרִיָה
Meaning: “yahweh is my light.”
The name is borne by several characters in the Old Testament, one of the most famous being Uriah the Hittite. King David had sent him out in the forefront of battle in the hopes that he would be killed, so that David could marry Uriah’s wife, Bathsheba.
The name also appears in the Bible in the form of Urijah.
The name was always common among Jews but did not catch on in the Christian world until after the Protestant Reformation. It was a fairly common name in early America.
Charles Dickens used the name for an antagonist in his 1850 novel David Copperfield. Due to the character’s reputation, the term Uriah Heep is often used to describe a “yes man.”
Currently, Uriah is the 548th most popular male name in the United States, while his alternative, Urijah, ranked in at # 623, (2010).
Other forms of the name include:
Urijah Урия (German/Russian)
Ourias Ουριας (Greek)
Uriyah אוּרִיָה (Hebrew)
Urias (Late Latin)
A common modern Hebrew short form is Uri.
- Magonet, Jonathan (1992) Bible Lives London: SCM, 93 – 4