Questions tagged [names]

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

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24
votes
3answers
5k views

Hebrew document found in grandfather's attic—what does it state?

I found this document in my grandfather's attic and would be thankful if someone could tell me (a) what this document is, (b) whether there are any names written, and (c) which, if any, religious ...
20
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2answers
526 views

Naming after the living. Why is it considered bad?

This is a fairly straight forward question. I am under the impression that this is bad. This is why you don't see many Moishe Abromowitz, III. Why is this bad, and why isn't that practice carried ...
13
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3answers
294 views

Why name but five creations?

God is described as creating many things in B'reshis chapter 1: animals, people, stars, plants, etc. However, about only five of his creations does it say that he called them by a name: "וַיִּקְרָא ...
8
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2answers
466 views

Which Amora is mentioned most often in the Gemara?

Which Amora is mentioned most often throughout Talmud Bavli?
6
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0answers
167 views

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?
4
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2answers
193 views

Chol-Kreisch Ceremony

Danny Schoemmann mentions a ceremony called a chol-kreisch in this answer for giving the secular name of a child. Is this custom still observed, and if so, how is it practiced?
3
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2answers
4k views

How many Maccabees were there and what were their names?

How many Maccabees were there and what were their names?
2
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0answers
359 views

Prayer for changing name for transgender reasons? [closed]

I am a transgender man and I would like to change my Hebrew and English names. Are there any specific prayers to go along with this, or any specific rules that I should be aware of? Thank you.
16
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4answers
446 views

Promised to name son Shimon - now husband is Shimon?

A woman who desperately wanted to get married traveled to Meron, the burial place of Rebbi Shimon bar Yochai, and vowed that if she found her match, she would name her first son Shimon in his merit. ...
16
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2answers
1k views

How do you pray for a sick baby who has not yet been named?

Is it possible to say a Mi SheBerach for a sick baby who has not yet been named? If so, how is it done? And if one cannot say a Mi SheBerach, is there another prayer that can be said? What if there ...
11
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4answers
860 views

What's the origin of having more than one name?

I suppose this is more of a history question: as in when did Jewish people start naming their children with more than one name? But I would also be interested in knowing the circumstances behind it? ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Why Do Converts Change Their Names?

Rabbi Avigdor Miller said that it used to be that gerim (converts) and baalei teshuvah (repentants) who had been given non-Jewish names did not change their names when they became part of the Jewish ...
9
votes
1answer
371 views

Tzom Gedalya vs. Taanis Esther

Why is Tzom Gedalya known as Tzom Gedalya and Taanis Esther as Taanis Esther. Why not Taanis Gedalya or Tzom Esther?
8
votes
3answers
401 views

Why is “Y'sachar Dov” a popular combination name? [closed]

Why are the names Dov and Ber frequently paired with the name Y'ssachar? Is it because that was the Belzer Rebbe's name or was his name part of a larger phenomenon?
8
votes
1answer
463 views

What does the title “Hatomim” mean?

I have stumbled upon the title "Hatomim" before people's names in Chabad-oriented documents on the Internet. What is the meaning and significance of this title, in this context? Practically speaking, ...
8
votes
1answer
807 views

Honorific for a non-Jew

My question is somewhat simple: is there an honorific for particularly righteous, deceased non-Jews? Related: is זכרונו לברכה ever used for non-Jews? I don't recall ever having seen this. EDIT: I ...
8
votes
3answers
659 views

Are the names Akiva and Ya'akov related?

Are the names Akiva and Ya'akov related?
8
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2answers
3k views

Naming your child using a dead relative's initial

Is there a Jewish tradition of naming your child using the first letter of the name of a recently deceased relative?
8
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2answers
235 views

Is there a limit to the number of names you can give someone?

I have two Hebrew names. One of my sons has 3. Many people I know have 3; someone I called to the Torah had 4. At 3, people who have to address you often, (rebbes, teachers) seem to get confused. (can'...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What was the name of Rivka's mother?

Unnamed women in the Torah, so far: Noach's wife-Naama, Yishmoel's wife-Riva, Lot's wife-Iris, any suggestions for Rivka's mother? she is mentioned many times in this weeks sedra but not by name
7
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4answers
698 views

Can a man and woman with the same name marry each other?

Suppose you have a man named Simcha. May he marry a woman named Simcha? (sources)
7
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7answers
5k views

Why isn't “Adam” a traditional Hebrew name?

I can't think of many people who go by the Hebrew name Adam. Any guesses why?
7
votes
2answers
213 views

Why identify personalities in midrash?

As noted previously on this site (quoting Mail-Jewish), there's a general tendency in midrashim to claim two persons in Tanach are the same. This is familiar to anyone who has studied Rashi's ...
7
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3answers
263 views

Niqqud of the name of the מהר"ץ חיות

What is the correct niqqud to put on the name of the מהר"ץ חיות? Wikipedia claims that his last name is spelled Chajes in English, and that Chayes or Hayot may also be seen. This seems to imply that ...
7
votes
1answer
290 views

Names with origins of avoda zara

I gave my daughter a second name after my father's, for which I came up with a female version. I saw that the name does exist, but I never bothered to see the origin for some reason. Now, after five ...
6
votes
2answers
743 views

Spouses in Tanach whose names start with the same letter? [closed]

This is one of those parsha sheet trivia questions: There are six couples in Tanach where the names of the spouses start with the same letter. Who are they? I've got five of them, but I can't think ...
5
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1answer
301 views

Lot's Wife: The Salt Lady

What was the name of Lot's wife?
5
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2answers
307 views

What is the greatest number of pages (daf) you can go in the Babylonian Talmud without encountering Abayei or Rava?

What is the greatest number of pages (daf) you can go in the Babylonian Talmud without encountering Abayei or Rava? I've heard it was 3?
5
votes
0answers
142 views

Naming after two people

Can one person be given one name (as opposed to a double name) which is meant to "correspond" to two different deceased individuals? I.e. Chaim and Shprintza have a daughter. Chaim's grandmother was ...
5
votes
1answer
219 views

Is a convert allowed to keep the name of an Avodah Zarah?

If a convert to Judaism has the name of an Avodah Zarah, is he or she obligated to change it? For example, there are many Hindus today that have the names of Hindu gods such as Lakhshmi, Shiva, and ...
4
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2answers
1k views

Naming your baby - does the name influence the child?

Inspired by this question: Is there any significance to the name you choose to give your child? Does the name have any influence over the child? Is there any reason to choose to name your son after ...
4
votes
1answer
634 views

Hebrew name of a convert with a Jewish father? [closed]

I technically was not born Jewish as my mother didn't convert until I was about ten. At that time I also underwent a ritual conversion. However, I've always assumed my Hebrew name should end in Ben ...
3
votes
1answer
267 views

What type of name should an androgynous be given?

An androgynous that has both signs of a male and female, should they be given a female name, a male name, or a "neutral" name (like "simcha" or "yona".) Is there any makor for this? (I realize this ...
3
votes
1answer
276 views

Pronunciation of Esther's cousin's name.

I have seen a couple of places where Mordechai’s name is spelled with a kamatz katan under the daled. Has anyone else seen this and do you know which is more accurate: Mordechai/ Mordachai/ Mordochai (...
3
votes
3answers
181 views

Name of Pharaoh that we were enslaved to in Mitzrayim

Do we know what the name of Pharaoh (i.e. king or president) whom we were enslaved to when we were in Mitzrayim was?
3
votes
5answers
7k views

Why does Esther change her name?

Esther is initially called Hadassah (Esther 2:7). Why does she change her name, ostensibly even before she is brought to the king's harem?
2
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3answers
184 views

Yaakov asking for the angel's name

After struggling with the angel Yaakov wanted to know what the angel's name was (Bereishit 32:30): וַיִּשְׁאַל יַעֲקֹב, וַיֹּאמֶר הַגִּידָה-נָּא שְׁמֶךָ, וַיֹּאמֶר, לָמָּה זֶּה תִּשְׁאַל לִשְׁמִי;...
2
votes
2answers
310 views

Can you pronounce Yehuda the way it is spelled?

I heard because there is HaShem's name in Yehuda that I should pronounce it more like "youda". does anyone know a source for this practice?
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Source of the name Achira - What did עינן have against his brother?

The nasi of Shevet Naftali's name was Achira (אחירע), which translates to "my brother is evil." What did Enan (his father) have against his brother, that he should give his son such a name?
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4answers
2k views

Names of Angels in Judaism

What are the names of angels mentioned in Jewish scriptures ?
1
vote
2answers
91 views

The link between a name and a person's soul?

The Hebrew word Neshamah contains the word Shem or name, linking the two together. The Ba'al Shem Tov commenting on Genesis 2:19 wrote Hashem hu haneshamah shel ha'adam, one's name is one's very ...
1
vote
1answer
206 views

Numbers of Tannaim and Amoraim

How many names of Tannaim do we know? How many names of Ammoraim do we know? (I am asking about the names and not simply asking "how many were there" because I don't know if there were people that ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Any famous Jews named Muhammad, Mahmud, Mehmet, etc.? [closed]

There is a halacha that one may not name a child after an evildoer, a principle known as shem reshaim yirkav taken from Yoma 38b ("ועל בן קמצר וחביריו נאמר ושם רשעים ירקב", cf. Mishlei 10:7). Later ...
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0answers
59 views

The importance of a name with meaning

What is the importance of a name? I read this on the Aish website:link The naming of a Jewish child is a most profound spiritual moment. The Sages say that naming a baby is a statement of her ...
0
votes
1answer
198 views

Who was the first Jew who was called with two names? [closed]

Who was the first Jew who was called with two names? I'm not asking "Who was the fist Jew who had two names?" like Yaakov [Israel] or Benyamin [Ben-Oni] had, I'm asking who was the first Jew who got "...
0
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0answers
333 views

The names of Gehinnom

Babylonian Talmud, ‘Erubin 19a' Joshua b. Levi said: The Gehenna/Gehinnom has seven names; Sheol, Abaddon, Beer Shahat, Tit ha-Yawen, Sha’are Mawet, Sha’are Zalmawet, and Gehenna. What exactly is ...
14
votes
2answers
364 views

How often and for how long should one pray for a sick person?

Are there rules/guidelines for how often to include a sick person in the refa’enu prayer in the amidah, and for how long to include them? Should one pray for that person every time one prays until one ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

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 ...
11
votes
2answers
344 views

מחני נא — Moshe's real name isn't mentioned

In Shemot 32:32, Moshe tells Hashem: וְעַתָּה אִם תִּשָּׂא חַטָּאתָם וְאִם אַיִן מְחֵנִי נָא מִסִּפְרְךָ אֲשֶׁר כָּתָבְתָּ: And now, if You forgive their sin But if not, erase me now from Your ...
11
votes
3answers
283 views

Is there value in gender-adapted names?

There are various Hebrew names in use that are feminizations of pre-existing masculine names. (The opposite case may exist as well, but I can't think of any examples.) Examples: Yaakova Rafaella ...