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Old Testament

Call me Ismael. It seems that the Old Testament, or Hebrew Bible, has always been a wonderful place to find names for both fictional characters and real life children. For some, the Bible merely provides names that have a traditional or distinguished feel, whereas others must choose the name of a particular character whose deeds they hope their child will emulate. Whatever the motivation, the Old Testament should be considered for its sheer selection, if nothing else, for within the Old Testament there are over three thousand names from which to chose.

Historically, Protestants and Jews have taken names from the Old Testament, while Roman Catholics have stuck with the New Testament or the Calendar of Saints. However, many Old Testament names have become so common in society, they are inadvertently chosen by parents uninterested in religion. There are probably thousands of Davids walking the streets that do not consider the Biblical nature of their name, but it is doubtful that anyone named Chimcham does not realize the Biblical reference (Chimcham was a servant of King David).

If you must name your child after your favorite Biblical character, who, coincidentally, has a particularly uncommon name, consider using it as a middlename instead of a forename. Just imagine the teasing that David gave Chimcham in the playground.

The following names are all stand outs, but not for the wrong reasons. A quick note, because male names vastly outnumber female names you might consider using a male name for a girl, either slightly modified or even as is, or a placename.


Abigail, Adah, Adina, Ariel, Asenath, Bathseba, Behia, Bernice, Beulah, Candace, Cassia, Deborah, Delilah, Dinah, Edna, Elisheba, Esther, Eve, Hannah, Hava, Joanna, Jordan, Judith, Kazia, Kezia, Keturah, Keziah, Leah, Lydia, Mara, Michal, Miriam, Myra, Naomi, Orpah, Peninnah, Rachel, Rebecca, Ruth, Sarah, Sarai, Shobi, Susanna, Tamar, Tirzah, Zilpah, Zipporah


Aaron, Abel, Abner, Abraham, Adam, Adlai, Alva, Amos, Amram, Ara, Ariel, Arni, Asa, Asher, Baruch, Benjamin, Caleb, Daniel, Darius, Elazor, Eli, Elihu, Elijah, Emanuel, Enoch, Enos, Ephraim, Esau, Ezekiel, Ezra, Gabriel, Gideon, Haran, Hillel, Hiram, Hosea, Ira, Isaac, Isaiah, Israel, Jacob, Japhet, Jared, Jeremiah, Jethro, Joah, Joel, Jonah, Jonathan, Joram, Jordon, Josiah, Judah, Kenan, Levi, Malachi, Micah, Mordecai, Moses, Nathaniel, Noah, Omar, Oren, Pharez, Phineas, Raphael, Reuben, Reuel, Samson, Samuel, Saul, Seth, Simeon, Solomon, Tobias, Uri, Zachariah, Zebediah, Zerah

This page was last modified on 16 May 2003.

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