Questions tagged [names]

Questions about the purpose, meaning, halachos (rules), etc. of names.

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Who was Paltiya ben Yehoyada?

In Targum Sheni on Esther 1:3, a man named Paltiya ben Yehoyadah (פלטיא/פלטיה בן יהוידע) is mentioned as someone who argued with Nevuchadnetzar when he came to destroy Yerushalayim: "When ...
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Yarden's River Name

The Torah refers (e.g. Numbers 33) to a river called ירדן. Why is it called ירדן?
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How could Yaakov name his children Gad and Dan?

Shabbos 67b says Gad was the name of an idol of the Amorites, and Dan was an idol of Samaria. If we're not supposed to even say the name of idols, how could Yaakov name his sons after them? (or is it ...
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Why were angels' names brought back?

Related. A well-known gemara in the Yerushalmi (Rosh Hashanah 6a) says: "רשב"ל אמר אף שמות המלאכים עלו בידן מבבל. בראשונה (ישעיהו ו׳:ו׳) ויעף אלי אחד מן השרפים (שם) שרפים עומדים ממעל לו ...
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Shemoneh Esreh Torah line for Name

Before Oseh Shalom in the Amidah, my Siddur says, "Here one may say a sentence from the Torah, which starts with the first letter of his first name and finishes with the last letter of his first ...
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Why specifically mention Yosef?

When listing who will settle in land on the east of the Jordan river, Moshe adds in part of the tribe of Menashe, but Bamidbar 32:33 identifies the group as coming from the tribe of "Menashe ben ...
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English Names of the Five Chumashim

The Hebrew names of the Chumashim are usually referred to as בראשית שמות ויקרא etc. but the English names do not correlate with these names literally. The English names are Exodus, Numbers etc not ...
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Why “בְּנֵי עַמּוֹן”?

Genesis 19:37–38 (JPS): וַתֵּלֶד הַבְּכִירָה בֵּן וַתִּקְרָא שְׁמוֹ מוֹאָב הוּא אֲבִי מוֹאָב עַד הַיּוֹם. וְהַצְּעִירָה גַם הִוא יָלְדָה בֵּן וַתִּקְרָא שְׁמוֹ בֶּן עַמִּי הוּא אֲבִי בְנֵי עַמּוֹן ...
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Why did Naphtali name his first son Yachtzeal (יַחֲצִיאֵל)?

Why did Naphtali name his first son Yachtzeal (יַחֲצִיאֵל)? The name is mentioned (as יַחְצְאֵל) in Bereishis 46:24 and Bamidbar 26:48, and (as יַחֲצִיאֵל) in Divrei Hayomim I 7:13, but is there any ...
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Why Yehoshua **Bin** Nun and not Yehoshua **Ben** Nun

The Torah refers to Yehoshua as Yehoshua Bin Nun. (See here for an example). Why Bin Nun and not Ben Nun? Are there any places in Tanach where he is referred to as Ben Nun? Is there anyone else in ...
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What is the meaning of כמר used as an honorific before introducing one's name?

It is standard among Jews writing in Hebrew to attach the honorific כמר before introducing one's name. This custom is actually quite old dating back at least to the days of the earliest Acharonim, and ...
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What was the name of Yiftach's (Jephthah's) daughter?

Do we have any sources for the name of Yiftach/Jephthah's daughter in Shoftim?
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Why “Snir” in Yechezkel 27:5?

In Devarim 3:9 it says that the Tzidonim would call Mt. Chermon "Sirion" and the Amorim would call it "Snir". However, when Yechezkel laments the fall of Tzor, which is in Tzidon, ...
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ALL Names of God

Where can I find an exhaustive list of all of the names of Hashem (preferably שמות and כינוים) in Tanach and elsewhere? Is this too ill-defined a topic to have an exhaustive answer? Do the 70 in the ...
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What does the name Daniel mean in Hebrew?

I know that the words are "Judge/judged" and Hashem's name. However, which one of these is the meaning of the name: HaShem is my judge HaShem judged me
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Unisex names on a ketubah

In Israel there are many names that are unisex; used for both men and women. What is the halacha regarding using a traditionally boys name for a girl and vice versa with regards to writing those names ...
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Why isn't Shimson's mother named?

Why isn't Shimson's mother named in Pesukim that tell the story? She is featured rather prominently, and the angel appears to her before speaking with both her and Manoaḥ. It would stand to reason ...
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Your name shall be 'Yisrael', but what does it mean and why so?

In relation to another question of mine I would like to know what the name Yisrael really means. It literally says Ya'akov is now names Yisrael because he has struggled AND has overcome. I heard ...
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Yeshv'av-Chutzpit connection?

Any connection between the mishmar kehunah Yeshv'av, which was also nicknamed "Chutzpit-Shuchin" (also known as Shuchim or Shichin, the town where they settled in) (see here for example) and ...
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Why were the pillars of Solomon's Temple named Boaz and Jachin?

Chapters 3-8 of 1 Kings highlight the positive achievements of King Solomon, focusing particularly on the construction of the Temple. It provides extensive details, including the names of the two ...
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In Exodus 3:14 is there a linguistic relationship between the Tetragrammaton and the “to be” and what is that linguistic relationship?

In other words, is Exodus 3:14 suggesting that the Tetragrammaton is a form of the verb "to be"? Can someone explain the linguistic path from the Tetragrammaton to the verb, "to be"...
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Why seven names for Jethro?

Jethro was called by 7 names in the Tanach. Rashi summarizes: שֶׁבַע שֵׁמוֹת נִקְרְאוּ לוֹ: רְעוּאֵל, יֶתֶר, יִתְרוֹ, חוֹבָב, חֶבֶר, קֵינִי, פּוּטִיאֵל He was called by seven names: Reuel, Jether, ...
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Where are the 24 places that Kohanim are called Leviim?

In numerous places the gemara quotes Rabbi Yehoshua Ben Levi as saying there are 24 places that Kohanim are called Leviim, but the gemara only ever quotes the pasuk in Yechezkel 44 15. See for ...
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Different names for the same person in Tanach [duplicate]

The Tanach frequently tells us that somebody's name was changed, by God or people (Abraham, Sarah, Jacob, Joseph, Jethro, etc.), for a stated reason. But the Sages added that some latter-day biblical ...
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Ben Drosai - what was his Zechus?

Gemara Shabbos 20a and in other locations mentions כמאכל בן דרוסאי Rashi explains that Ben Drosai was a thief who ate his food when it was only cooked 1/3. Did Ben Drosai have some sort of Zechus ...
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Idolatrous origin of the name TAMMUZ

The Gemmorah in Jerusalem Rosh Hashana 6a explains the process of adopting the Babylonian names on Months instead of Biblical ones. דא"ר חנינה שמות חדשים עלו בידם מבבל R'Hanina said: the names ...
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Joseph's name doesn't seem so meaningful, Why?

BSD "So she named him Joseph, saying, "May the Lord grant me yet another son."Genesis 30:24. Rashi says the name alludes to a prophecy seen by Rachel that Jacob would only produce 12 tribes. So ...
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What is the reasoning behind Avshalom's name

Why was Avshalom named so. It's kind of ironic that his name means "my father is peace", no? Any ideas?
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What is a “Sephardic Jew”?

My name is Paul Avila (yea, I know, doesn't sound Jewish at all) I was born in the Azores Portugal and moved to the United States when I was 2. People always ask me if I am Persian. Never ...
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Is there a name in Hebrew that means “God is my portion” [closed]

Is there a name in Hebrew that means "God is my portion"? When I google translate I get אלוהים הוא החלק שלי which I have no idea how to say.
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What is the source for: One shouldn't name a baby using names from before Abraham

I've heard or I've been taught one shouldn't name a baby (or take a name, in the case of a ger) from names in the Torah before Abraham, namely Adam, Noah etc. This makes sense to me, as Abraham is the ...
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Ben David and ben Yoseph not describing the herritage

Is it possible that the titles ‘ben David’ and ‘ben Yoseph’ do not refer to blood kinship or origin, but serve as a reference to the fact that someone possesses certain qualities, traits, abilities or ...
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Which foreign names did Jews associate with Hebrew names, and why?

A famous Medrash appears in slightly different versions in Lev Rabbah 32:05 and Songs Rabbah 4:12. The Medrah praises the Jews of the Egyptian slavery for certain attributes, such as their retention ...
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Ruach Hakodesh when Naming a Child for an Ancestor?

The Arizal says that parents having a certain level of ruach hakodesh when naming their child. Sha’ar HaGilgulim (23:8) - ונמצא כי כאשר נולד האדם וקוראים לו אביו ואמו שם אחד העולה בדעתם אינו באקראי ...
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Why the capital S?

When many write Hashem's name, they write it with the capital S. Why? And if one must capitalize a letter, why do we capitalize the S?
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Why is the term שליט“א more commonly used for a rav than the term נ”י?

As a follow up to this answer to a M.Y. question, why is שליט"א more commonly used after a notable Rav's name than the term נירו יאיר (or נ"י, as an abbreviation)? A wise person, such as a rav is ...
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Process by which one changes their name

Leaving aside the reasons why someone would change their name. Is there a process that a person needs to go through in doing so? At what point does the new name-change comes into effect?
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What is the connection between Lavan and Lavan?

We all know Lavan was a bad person. He tried to kill Yaakov, he enslaved Yaakov, tried to cheat Yaakov out of his wages, he gave Yaakov the wrong wife, and many more. We even begin the hagaddah with a ...
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Why are the sun and moon not named during creation?

During the 6 days of creation, many things are made and named (sky, grass, seeds, water, land, stars) but the sun and moon are referred to only as the lights/luminaries (Ber 1:16) וַיַּ֣עַשׂ ...
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Why did Egyptian and Babylonian officials change Jewish names?

For example, in Divrei Hayamim Beth 36:4, the king of Egypt crowned Eliakim over Judah and Jerusalem, and he changed his name to Jehoiakim. In Melachim Beth 24:17 the king of Babylonia crowned ...
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Why Hillel and Shammai are called “the Elder”?

Both Hillel and Shammai are referred to by the Mishna as "the Elder". Age: according to WIKI, Hillel lived to 120, but Shammai only to 80. Also, other Tannayim lived longer than 80 (R' ...
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Referring to Gentile Priest as “Father”

Is it permissible to either refer to or address a gentile priest as "Father XXXXXXXXX"? What alternatives might there be?
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Who was Shaul ben HaCanaanit?

In Bereshis 46:10 among the sons of Shimon there is listed one וְשָׁאוּל, בֶּן-הַכְּנַעֲנִית. I have seen various explanations for who this person is: He is the son of Shimon and Dina. He is ...
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Different methods of naming the 70 nations

When listing the descendants of Noah in Gen 10,1 and on the Torah uses different naming methods: Names in the singular: "וְאֵלֶּה תּוֹלְדֹת בְּנֵי־נֹחַ שֵׁם חָם וָיָפֶת וַיִּוָּלְדוּ לָהֶם בָּנִים ...
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Why does the Targum switch the order when identifying Memuchan and Hasach?

Targum on Esther identifies Memuchan as Haman (in 1:16): ממוכן הוא המן Memuchan, who is Haman Yet on 4:5, when he identifies Hasach as Daniel, he switches the order: דניאל דמתקרי התך ...
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The Priest-King's name

In Kings II ch. 15, עזריה, Azariah son of Amaziah is said to reign over Judah. During his reign he is stricken with leprosy and lives out his days in this state, while his son Jotham rules in his ...
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Why is the word Purim in plural?

Esther 9:26: עַל־כֵּ֡ן קָֽרְאוּ֩ לַיָּמִ֨ים הָאֵ֤לֶּה פוּרִים֙ עַל־שֵׁ֣ם הַפּ֔וּר Therefore, these days are called Purim (in plural) after the name of the Pur (lot - in singular). There seems to ...
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Do you know what the name Edja means and is it commonly associated with a certain Hebrew name? [closed]

My family is trying to figure out some details for my grandmother's headstone. Her Hebrew name is forgotten, she went by Edith for as long as I've known her but her Polish name was Edja. I can't find ...
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Does Shemot 23:13 literally mean Marvel & DC Comics are forbidden?

Does Shemot 23:13 literally mean Marvel & DC Comics are forbidden? "and the name of the gods of others you shall not mention; it shall not be heard through your mouth." ( וְשֵׁ֨ם ...
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164 views

Why is Daniel specifically referred to as a beloved man?

In Daniel 10:11, 19 Daniel is referred to as a beloved man. Commentators explain this term to mean pure, or that his actions were beloved. Midrashim explain this more generally that the righteous are ...

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