What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet. William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616) English dramatist, poet Romeo and Juliet, II:2When we went to the hospital to deliver our twins, we…
Published October 26, 2010 by
Many parents choose to name their children after figures in the Bible. It’s a tradition from ancient times and crosses many cultures and religious traditions. Both Christians and Jewish parents like to choose from among the biblical name lists.
Here are some of the most popular biblical boy and girl baby names. Of course, it’s a matter of taste whether you like the name, how it sounds with your last name, and if you care about the meaning. Some people feel that their child will take on the characteristics of their names. Certainly in biblical times, it was thought that a person had the characteristics their name suggested. Today people are not as interested in the root meaning of a name and choose it because they like it.
1. Jesse meaning gift of God
2. Alexander meaning defender of men
3. Gabriel meaning God is my strength
4. Jacob meaning one who takes the place of
5. Zebediah meaning God has provided
6. Luke meaning luminous, white
7. Thaddeus meaning one who praises or confesses
8. Isaac meaning laughter, one who laughs
9. Nathan meaning God has given
10. Joseph meaning God will add
1. Anna meaning grace
2. Beulah meaning married
3. Elizabeth meaning God’s promise
4. Mary meaning wished for child
5. Susanna meaning lily
6. Tabitha meaning gazelle
7. Eve meaning to live
8. Joy meaning happy
9. Sophia meaning wisdom
10. Diana meaning bright, heavenly, divine
Many biblical names fall in and out of fashion while others make just about every baby name list. When you’re picking a list of possible names for your baby, consider several factors. One is your love of the name. If you don’t love it, don’t pick it. You’ll be hearing it for the rest of your life. Family traditions also can be a factor. If you’ve got a name in your family that you simply must use, perhaps you can add another biblical name as a middle name. You want to be sure that you choose a name that is not going to be a source of mockery in grade school. Little children find anything different funny. So if you would rather your child had a name that will keep her from being the source of amusement at recess, name her something other than Dorcus. (Yes, that’s a real biblical girl’s name.)
That said, never feel you have to be limited by names that are en vogue. Every generation seems to end up with a few names that will earn your kids numbers or nicknames in school. Too many Sarah's will make your daughter “Sarah 2” in class or “Sarah S.” If you don’t want your child to have to share their name with anyone else, think outside the usual. Of course the wider out of the normal scope you go, the more likely your child will be singled out. That can be a good thing if you want your child to be a leader and not a follower. But don’t get so wacky that your child has to change their name in adulthood just to get some peace.
Last names really do have to match first names. Think about your child learning to spell a long first name and a long last name and see if you might choose something simpler.
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