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Jonathan (Hebrew: יְהוֹנָתָן/יוֹנָתָן, Standard Yonatan / Yəhonatan Tiberian Yônāṯān) is a common male given name meaning "YHWH has given" in Hebrew.[1][2] The earliest known use of the name was in the Bible, one Jonathan was the son of King Saul, a close friend of David.

Bible primer, Old Testament, for use in the primary department of Sunday schools (1919) (14779740284).jpg
Jonathan and David
Dutch: [ˈjoːnɑtɑn]
French: [ʒɔnatɑ̃]
German: [ˈjoːnatan]
Spanish: [ˈɟʝonatan]
Name dayFrance: 1 March,
United States: 26 April,
Sweden: 22 December,
Germany: 29 December,
Finland: 26 January
Word/nameHebrew (Israel)
MeaningGod has given
Other names
Nickname(s)Jon, Jon Jon, Jonny, Jona, Jonty, Jonte, Nathan, Jono, Jonat
Related namesJon, Nathan, Jonatan, Nathaniel

Variants of Jonathan include Jonathon, Johnathan, Jonothon, Jonothan, Johnathen, Johnathon, Jhonathan, Jonatan and Jhonnathan. Biblical variants include Yehonathan, Y'honathan, Yhonathan, Yonathan, Yonatan, Yonaton, Yonoson, Yeonoson or Yehonasan. In Israel, "Yoni" is a common nickname for Yonatan (Jonathan) in the same way Jonny is in English.[3]

The name was the 31st most popular boys' name in the United States in 2011, according to the SSA.[4]

Nicknames include Jonny, John, Jon, Jono, Jon Boy and Jona. In the past, Jo and Jonty were common diminutives of Jonathan in the United Kingdom but this is much rarer now.

Names with similar meanings include Theodosius in Greek, Khodadad in Persian and Bozhidar or Bogdan in Slavonic.

In the English-speaking world, the name saw its first popularity with the Puritans during the English Civil War.[5] Following Puritan migration to North America, the name became synonymous with New England and the United States as a whole, with the character Brother Jonathan becoming a personification of the country during the American Revolutionary War.[6]

List of alternativesEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ " – Origin and Meaning of Jonathan". Archived from the original on 2009-05-30. Retrieved 2009-04-26.
  2. ^ Hanks, Hardcastle and Hodges, Oxford Dictionary of First Names, Oxford University Press, 2nd edition, p. 147.
  3. ^ The Crosslinguistic Study of Language Acquisition – Page 342 by Dan Isaac Slobin
  4. ^ Popular Baby Names, Social Security Online
  5. ^ Hart, James D.; Leininger, Phillip (1995-10-12). The Oxford Companion to American Literature. Oxford University Press, USA. ISBN 9780195065480.
  6. ^ "Uncle Sam | United States symbol". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2018-08-14.
  7. ^ "Jonathan name with Arabic Calligraphy". Retrieved 2018-04-30.