[b-hebrew] YHWH - yahu

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Sun Jul 24 12:14:07 EDT 2005

I'm surprised at your question. The Hebrew names that include various forms
of Yah, Yehu, Yeho, Yahu and Yo are quite typical theophoric names, such as
appear in all ANE cultures. They usually include the name of a deity with
either a verb or an adjactive. We have plenty of such names with such
deities as Kemosh, Baal, Nabu, Qaus, Isis, Hadad, Shamash, Sin, and many

The Divine name that became, in Second Temple Jewish tradition, too holy to
pronounce, was only the full Tetragrammaton. Its various componants and
substitutes should not be "taken in vain" (meaning, in Jewish tradition, not
only swearing but any saying of God's name not in prayer or Torah study),
but they may certainly be used as part of personal names.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Vadim Cherny" <VadimCherny at mail.ru>
To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Saturday, July 23, 2005 10:07 PM
Subject: [b-hebrew] YHWH - yahu

> Isn't it a bit odd for common people to casually add a divine designator
to their names? Extra-sacred Tetragrammaton, forbidden to pronounce - yet
added to common names and more or less clearly pronounced. Indeed, there is
little, if any, difference between Iao and Ia[h]u.
> Is there a similar phenomenon in any other culture, of adding divine name
(or its close approximation) to proper names? Using earthly names of divine
incarnations (Jose, Krishna) is not exactly the same. Abdallah is also
different, the name used specifically with abd in a meaningful phrase, not
casually adding divine to proper name. In Egypt, divine name seems to be
attached only to royal names.
> I do not recall anything like -yahu in contemporary cultures. Could anyone
offer examples?
> Vadim Cherny
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