What are the most popular Jewish baby names in Israel?

From Avi to Yosef, biblical to modern and everything in between.

February 14, 2018 16:30
2 minute read.

Babies (Illustrative). (photo credit: INGIMAGE)


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The most popular baby name in Israel in 2016 was Muhammad, given to some 2,880 newborns, according to a report released on Wednesday by the Central Bureau of Statistics, ahead of Family Day, celebrated Thursday.

The report also found that the second-most popular name in 2016 was Yosef, given to 1,934 children (1,237 Jewish boys and 641 Muslims), followed by Noam, which was given to 1,924 Jewish children, boys and girls alike.

The most popular Jewish name for a boy in 2016, for the third year in a row, was Noam, with some 1,505 boys given this name. Also making the list of the top 10 most popular names was David, Ori/Uri, Ariel, Yosef, Eitan, Daniel, Itai, Yonatan and Moshe, similar to the most popular boys names in 2014 and 2015.

The report also found that in 2016, there was an increasing trend in the number of boys named Lavi and Eliya compared to the past decade.

The most popular Jewish name for a girl was Tamar, which has remained one of the most popular names for a girl throughout the past 17 years. Also among the most popular names: Noa, Avigail, Maya, Yael, Adele, Shira, Sarah, Ayala and Talia.

The report also broke down the most popular Jewish baby names by city. In Jerusalem, the most popular baby name for a girl was Sara, followed by Esther and Tamar, and for a boy was David, followed by Yosef and Avraham. In Tel Aviv, the most popular name for a girl was Maya, followed by Ella and Leah, and for a boy was Ori, Yonatan, and Adam.

In Bnei Brak, a predominately ultra-Orthodox neighborhood, the most popular name for a boy was David and for a girl was Sara while in Haifa the most popular name for a girl was Maya and for a boy was Noam.

The report also found that one in every five Muslim boys is named Muhammad or Ahmed (15% and 4.7% of newborns, respectively). Also making the top ten list for most popular Muslim baby boy names: Yosef, Omar, Adam, Jud, Abed, Ali, Amir, Ibrahim, Mahmoud, and Karem.

The most popular name among Muslim girls was Miryam, followed by Sham, Jana, Jori, Lin, Lian, Aline, and Fatmah.

This year’s report also provided an analysis of the names of the mothers and grandmothers of babies born in 2016 and found that the most common mother’s name in 2016 was Michal – which ranked 19th among the most popular baby girl names. The most common grandmother’s name was Esther, which was also the 5th most popular name among mothers.

Similarly, the most common name among fathers in 2016 was David – the second most common baby name for a boy, while the most common name among grandfathers was Yosef – the 5th most common baby name of a boy.

The report also included a list of the most popular middle names for babies born in 2016: Haim for a boy and Esther for a girl.

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