I hope this is the right forum for a search/request like this.

A few months ago - unfortunately, I don't remember the context in which it arose - I stumbled across a terrific book on HebrewBooks.org that listed virtually every name appearing in TaNa"Kh with its meaning and source.

One name I specifically remember appearing in the book is אהליאב. It described the name as meaning that HaShem (G-d) is our tent (i.e. our protector) and brought a description of who Aholiav was.

Does anyone know of a book or books like this? I would be truly grateful!

  • Wow! The book called "Anshei Shem" that I found focuses only on the ancestry of Ge'onim. I don't think that's what you want. Any other possible book name that you can surmise?
    – DanF
    Jun 19, 2015 at 15:27
  • Yes, I'm pretty sure it was not called Anshei Shem. Sorry for that red herring.
    – Lee
    Jun 19, 2015 at 15:28
  • See here for an apparently relatively thorough list of names, but I dont think it includes reasons for names.
    – mevaqesh
    Jun 19, 2015 at 15:31
  • 1
    @Lee Errors happen for good reasons. You inadvertently directed me to an interesting book. And, you got me in the mood for Matjes herring, too :-)
    – DanF
    Jun 19, 2015 at 15:35

1 Answer 1


I think I know what book you're referring to as it's sitting on the bottom of my shelf at home, but offhand I couldn't remember what it was called. I did some googling to see if I could find the title, and came across some other options (as well as a different question on this site that might also answer your question).

There is an English Artscroll book called Ishei Hatanach that might also help help with what you're looking for.

Update: Turns out, the book I was thinking of was Michlol Hama'amarim Vehapisgamim, a book about phrases and their sources. I don't actually have the book of names in my house, sorry.

  • Thank you for the pointer. The book I found, however, was freely available on the Internet. IIRC, it was available on HebrewBooks.org
    – Lee
    Jun 21, 2015 at 8:00
  • Any update, @Salmononius2?
    – Lee
    Jun 28, 2015 at 19:54
  • @Lee Unfortunately, as per my update, I was mistaken about the book I was thinking of. Family members of mine do remember seeing a book on names, but I haven't seen it around. Jun 29, 2015 at 1:02

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