Barak (name)

Barak, also spelled Baraq, is a given name of Semitic origin. As a Hebrew name, from the root B-R-Q (Hebrew: ב-ר-ק‎; Arabic: ب-ر-ق‎), it means "lightning" and it appears in the Hebrew Bible as the name of an Ancient Israelite general Barak (ברק Bārāq).


The Semitic root B-R-Q has the meaning "to shine"; "lightning".[1]: p.122  The biblical name ברק Bārāq is given after Barak, a military commander who appears in the Book of Judges.

The Arabic cognate is بَرْق barq (not to be confused with بَارَك bārak, which is cognate with Hebrew בָּרוּךְ‬ bārûch). The epithet Barcas of the Punic general Hamilcar is derived from the same root, as is the name of Al-Buraq, the miraculous steed of Islamic Mi'raj tradition.

Although the given name is mostly Jewish and found predominantly in Israel, it has occasionally been used by Anglo-Saxon Protestants in the early modern period, when given names from the Hebrew Bible were in fashion, as in the name of Barak Longmate, an 18th-century English genealogist.

Use as a given nameEdit

Use as a surnameEdit

  • Aharon Barak (born 1936), Israeli former President of the Supreme Court of Israel
  • Ehud Barak (born 1942), Israeli former prime minister
  • Valia Barak (born 1969), Peruvian journalist and television presenter
  • Keren Barak (born 1972), Israeli lobbyist and politician
  • Boaz Barak (born 1974), Israeli-American computer scientist

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Murtonen, Aimo (1986). Hospers, J.H. (ed.). Hebrew in its West Semitic setting: a comparative survey of non-Masoretic Hebrew dialects and traditions. Leiden: E.J. Brill. ISBN 9789004088993.