Does the name Rami (רמי‎), as used by figures in the Talmud such as Rami bar Papa and Rami bar Chama, have a meaning based in Judaism? If so, what is it?

If רמ means high or exalted, does רמי mean my exalted?

I am assuming that the name רמי is a full proper Jewish name and not a nickname for Rahamim or Yermiyahu.

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  • Resource check for us - The last paragraph seems to have been copied or paraphrased from Wikipedia. Is that where you got it from? It also states, there, that it is related to "Ram", meaning "exalted", as you surmised. However, as there is no source for that claim, I am not making this an answer. The notion sounds credible but unconfirmed.
    – DanF
    Apr 24, 2015 at 16:48
  • @DanF, Your investigative skills are right on point. I also didn't find the full translation of the name in that article.
    – Ani Yodea
    Apr 24, 2015 at 16:51
  • It's worth mentioning that in modern Hebrew, Rami is most often a nickname for Avraham.
    – Binyomin
    Jul 4, 2020 at 19:10

2 Answers 2


רמי is actually short for רב אמי

Source Pesachim 27b:
א"ר אמי בר חמא בשרשיפא בעא מיניה רמי בר חמא מרב חסדא תנור שהסיקו בעצי הקדש. This is confirmed in Sefer https://he.m.wikisource.org/wiki/תולדות_תנאים_ואמוראים/א/ר%27_אמי_בר_חמא I cannot find a source for the meaning of this name other than perhaps it's referring to a covenent of kehuna as translated in Targum Yonasan on Bamidbar 25,12 בִּשְׁבוּעָא אֵימַר לֵיהּ מִן שְׁמִי הָאֲנָא גָזַר לֵיהּ יַת קְיָמִי שְׁלַם. The aromaic term for a covenant is מומי as it says in Nedarim 10b: מומי מומתא הרי אלו כינויין לשבועה

Rami or Rav Ami bar chama was a Cohen as clearly indicated in Rashi Shabbos 10b: רב חסדא - כהן הוה כדאמרינן (ברכות פ"ו דף מד.) גבי עיר אחת היתה בא"י ובה שמונים זוגות אחים כהנים הנשואים שמונים זוגות אחיות כהנות ובדקו מסורא עד נהרדעא ולא אשכחו אלא תרתי בנתיה דרב חסדא דהוו נסיבי לרמי בר חמא ולמר עוקבא בר חמא:


Based on this claim:

Rami is a form of the Hebrew and Indian name, Ram.

Regarding Ram, the same site says:

From Hebrew roots, its meaning is 'exalted, supreme'. The name was borne by the second son of Hezron, a descendant of Judah in the Old Testament of the Bible.

Sure enough, Ram is mentioned in Ruth 4:19:

וְחֶצְרוֹן֙ הוֹלִ֣יד אֶת־רָ֔ם וְרָ֖ם הוֹלִ֥יד אֶת־עַמִּֽינָדָֽב׃

and Hezron begot Ram, and Ram begot Amminadab

It's possible that "Rami" was similar at that time to adding the "i" vowel sound to names then, as many do today such as Shmuli. Avrami and Chani, etc.

I am surmising that the Egyptian name for Paroah, Ramses, may have emanated from the same root name. Similar idea may apply to the famous "Romulans" from one of the old Star Trek episodes.

  • Thanks for finding the source in Ruth. Wouldn't your reasoning of adding the "i" vowel to names make the name more of a nickname and not an actual name?
    – Ani Yodea
    Apr 24, 2015 at 18:40
  • @AniYodea It's hard to tell what might have been considered a nickname then as it is sometimes hard to tell, now. There's a M.Y. question regarding how to call people to the Torah using "nicknames". The answer, there, says, you use whatever name was assigned at your brit. So if they called someone "Rami" at the brit, which I assume is what they did, then it's no nickname. I can't say why they used that name or how common it was. Just be glad that they didn't name him "Ramio", as then his sister might have been named "Juliet" :-)
    – DanF
    Apr 24, 2015 at 20:15
  • This claim is based on modern Hebrew but the gemorah indicates otherwise see my answer bellow
    – yosefkorn
    Jul 30, 2018 at 1:19

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