David (name)

David (name)
David, Davit
David von Michelangelo.jpg
Michelangelo's statue of the biblical David.
Pronunciation /ˈdeɪvɪd/
Gender Male
Word/Name Hebrew
Meaning "beloved"

David is a common male given name and surname.

The name "David" (pronounced /ˈdeɪvɪd/ day-vid) is derived from the ancient times of Mesopotamia and used as the Biblical Hebrew name דָּוִד (Dāwīḏ IPA: [dɔːˈviːð]), meaning "Beloved". "Dudi" is a common nickname for David in Hebrew, in the same way Dave and Davy are in English.[1]

The Arabic and Assyrian versions are Daud (pronounced " Da-ood") and Dawood (pronounced " Da-wood").

Name days are celebrated on 1 March (for St. David of Wales) and 29 December (for King David), as well as 25 June (St. David of Sweden), 26 June, 26 August, 11 December, and 30 December (Norway, Latvia).

David is often shortened to "Davey/Davie/Davy" (additionally, in Wales, such variants as "Dafydd" and "Dewi" and such diminutives as "Dai", "Daf" and "Taff/Taffy" are fairly common, although "Dai" was formerly a name in its own right, meaning "shining" in Welsh, prior to the reign of King Henry VII). The oldest, most popular and most commonly used diminutive form in the English speaking countries of "David" is "Dave", which first appeared in written form in the 16th century (but is probably much older). In Jewish culture, including outside Israel, it is common to apply the nicknames "Dovi" and "Dov". The nickname "Dave" has been used as a name in its own right in the 19th and 20th centuries, at least in the U.S. At the height of its popularity in the 1950s and early 1960s, the name Dave was bestowed upon more than 3,000 infants each year.[2] "Davo" is also used as a nickname, and is quite common in Armenia and Australia.

Another less common variant is "Daveth", the origin of which is uncertain (but could be an anglicised form of the Welsh "Dafydd").

Female equivalents of the name David include "Davida" (no longer in common usage) and "Davina", the latter of which is very popular in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The girl's name "Davinia" may also have originated from David, though some have argued it is actually the female version of the Gaelic name "Devin".


In other languages

Frequency information

  • Northern Ireland: "David" was the most popular masculine given name for newborns in 1975 and had dropped into a fluctuating rank around 20th in the first few years of the 21st Century.[3]

Name Statistics

David is the second most popular name in the USA. 1/28 of all Americans are named David, so its popularity is 35.23 in a thousand. If this is compared to America's population statistics, there are 10,905,563, and 92,597 Davids are born each year.(Courtesy of Pokemyname.com)

People with the given name David


Other monarchs

  • David (Da'ud), an 11th-century CE ruler of the Seljuk Turks
  • David of Taman, Khazar ruler of the late 10th century CE


  • Saint David (c. 500–589), patron saint of Wales
  • David of Munktorp (died c. 1082)
  • Saint David of Muscovy or Gleb (987–1015), brother of saint Roman of Muscovy or Boris, and son of saint Vladimir



  • David Attenborough (born 1926), English broadcaster and naturalist
  • David Bellamy (born 1933), British author and environmental campaigner
  • David Suzuki (born 1936), Japanese Canadian science broadcaster and environmental activist

Government figures, politicians

Music artists




Fictional characters

People with the surname David

Fictional characters


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