Name James - meaning and history of given name James around the world
The meaning and history of given name James around the world
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Q&A about the given name James
Why is the name James so popular?
There are several reasons why the name James is so popular. One reason is that it is a translation of Jacob, a widespread name for boys. Another reason is that it is a Biblical name, and two of Jesus’ apostles were named James. Finally, the name James has Scottish roots, and it became more popular when King James VI took the English throne in the 17th century.
What does the name James mean?
It is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of James is “he who supplants”. (supplant is a transitive verb that means to supersede somebody, especially by force or treachery). Etymology stems from Late Latin Iacomus, a variant of Iacobus, the Latin form of Greek Iakobos and New Testament Greek form of the Old Testament form Jacob (Hebrew Yaakov).
James was not popular in England in the late Middle Ages, with only having 1 in every 500 people using the name. However, it rose to the tenth position in 1538 and continued to grow in popularity through the end of the century. Its success has been said to start with James Stuart’s accession to the English throne in 1603, but it is more likely due to the disciples of that name or the cult of St James of Compostella.
How popular is the name James in the U.S.?
Appropriately so for a name with Biblical and royal connections, James has reigned over almost every other boy name since 1900, according to the Social Security Administration’s rankings. It was No. 1 from 1940 to 1952. Even when it wasn’t numero uno, it occupied the second, third, and fourth rankings. James is so popular, in fact, that it has been among the top 10 boys’ names every single decade except for two, from 1993 to 2013. Even then, it was still hugely popular, never falling below No. 19. In 2014, James bounced back into the top 10 and has been holding steady there ever since—this may be because parents in search of a new trend started opting to name their daughters James around that time, boosting its popularity yet again.
What are popular foreign variations of James?
Given that the most fashionable form of the name “Jimmy” is now “James,” it’s no surprise that the foreign variations of “Jimmy” are becoming more popular as well. Some of the most popular foreign variations of “Jimmy” include “Diego” (Spanish), “Jaime” (Spanish), “Jacques” (French), “Giacomo” (Italian), “Hamish” (Scottish), “Jaako” (Finnish), “Seamus” (Irish), “Jaap” (Dutch), and “Jago” (Cornish). With so many stylish celebrities choosing foreign variations of “Jimmy” for their sons in recent years, it’s clear that this trend is here to stay.
Is James an English name?
James has a long and varied history, appearing in the English-speaking world via Old French. The name was first used in the 13th century and was borne by 13 monarchs over the centuries. The most famous bearer of the name is probably James VI of Scotland, who also became James I of England in 1603. He is most remembered today for authorizing the King James Bible. In the 21st century, the name is still popular, appearing in the name of basketball star LeBron James.
There are plenty of people who go by only the name James, without any sort of nickname. While “Jim” and “Jimmy” are popular nicknames for people named James, there are just as many people who don’t use a nickname.
Is Jacob from the Bible the same as James?
Jacob was the second son of Isaac and Rebekah and was born with Esau. His history is related to the latter half of the book of Genesis. He bought the birthright from his brother Esau. Afterwards, He acquired the blessing intended for Esau by practising well-known deceit on Isaac. In his 78th year, Jacob was sent from the family home to avoid his brother and seek a wife among his kindred in Padan-aram. As he passed through Bethel, God appeared to him. After the lapse of twenty-one years, he returned from Padan-aram with two wives, two concubines, eleven sons, a daughter and large property. He escaped from the angry pursuit of Laban, from a meeting with Esau, and the vengeance of the Canaanites provoked by the murder of Shechem. In each of these three emergencies, he was aided and strengthened by the interposition of God. His name was changed at Jabbok in Israel. Deborah and Rachel died before he reached Hebron; Joseph, the favourite son of Jacob, was sold into Egypt eleven years before Isaac’s death; Jacob had probably exceeded his 130th year when he went to Egypt. He was presented to Pharaoh, dwelt for seventeen years in Rameses and Goshen, and died in his 147th year. His body was embalmed, carried with great care and pomp into the land of Canaan, and deposited with his fathers and wife Leah in Machpelah’s cave. The example of Jacob is quoted by the first and the last of the minor prophets. Besides the frequent mention of his name in conjunction with the names of the other two patriarchs, there are distinct references to the events in the life of Jacob in four books of the New Testament.
What is a famous quote about the name James?
“I hate American simplicity. I glory in the piling up of complications of every sort. If I could pronounce the name ‘James’ in any different or more elaborate way, I should be in favour of doing it.” — Henry James
Which of the U.S. presidents were named James?
U.S. Presidents named James were James Madison, James Polk, James Buchanan, and James Monroe.
What are good siblings’ names for James?
Jacob could be confused with ‘Jacobus’ for James, and Jeremiah or Jeremy with Jerome, the name of a saint. The frequent use of the initial ‘J’ may be coincidental, but it is noticeable how often siblings were given these names, and the impression is that some parents were influenced by the alliteration.