Noah Name Meaning

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Noah is believed to come from the Hebrew "Noach," meaning "rest." It is also the name of a prominent biblical figure.

In the Old Testament's book of Genesis, Noah was chosen by God as the only righteous man of his time. He was told to gather animals "two by two" from every species and build the Ark, which allowed him, his family, and the animals to survive the Great Flood meant to punish the world. After the flood, he received the sign of the rainbow as a covenant from God that the entire Earth would not be destroyed again by a flood again.

  • Origin: Noah comes from the Hebrew "Noach" which means "rest," or "repose." It also comes from the Babylonian word "nukhu," which means repose or rest. It is also a biblical name from the Old Testament.
  • Gender: In the U.S., Noah has traditionally been used as a boy's name. However, there is a feminine version of the name, Noa, which is also a biblical name (one of the Five Daughters of Zelophehad) and it is a very popular name in Israel, Spain, Portugal, and the Netherlands.
  • Pronunciation: No-ah

Although many baby names are separated by gender, Verywell Family believes that sex does not need to play a role in your name selection process. It’s important to select a name that you feel suits your new baby the best.

How Popular Is the Name Noah?

Noah is an old name that has become extremely popular again. It began gaining popularity in the 1980s, reaching the top 100 baby names in 1995 and the top 15 in 2006.

It was the No. 1 boy's baby name in the United States from 2013 to 2016, peaking in 2016 when 19,144 babies were named Noah—more than at any other time over the last 100 years. It dropped to second most popular in 2017 and has remained the second most popular name since.

Name Variations

As it is a biblical name, Noah has an equivalent in multiple languages, including:

  • Noa (Croatian, French)
  • Noé (French, Portuguese, Spanish)
  • Nuh (Arabic/Turkish)
  • Noach (Hebrew, Dutch)
  • Nooa (Finnish)
  • Noak (Swedish)
  • Nojus (Lithuanian)

Other variations include:

  • Knoa (Hebrew)
  • Nowa (Arabic)
  • Nowah (Chinese)
  • Nohwa (Australian)
  • Noha (Arabic)
  • Nawai (Hawaiian)
  • Nowey (German)
  • Noeh (Hebrew)

Similar Names

Other boy names from the Old Testament/Bible include:

  • Aaron
  • Abraham
  • Adam
  • Caleb
  • Daniel
  • David
  • Elijah
  • Ezra
  • Issac
  • Isaiah
  • Joshua
  • Samuel

Other boy names starting with N:

  • Nash
  • Nathan
  • Neil
  • Niam
  • Nicholas
  • Niles
  • Nolan
  • Norman

Suggested Sibling Names

  • Aiden
  • Charlie
  • Emma
  • Emily
  • Ethan
  • Evelyn
  • Gabriel
  • Hannah
  • Hope
  • Jacob
  • John
  • Leo
  • Max
  • Mary
  • Micah
  • Olivia
  • Rachel
  • Ruth
  • Sarah
  • Zachary

Famous People Named Noah

One of the most famous American Noahs was Noah Webster, an American lexicographer born in 1758 who created the "American Spelling Book" in 1783 and America's first dictionary, the "American Dictionary of the English Language" in 1828.

The name Noah is also associated with a number of actors, including Noah Wylie, Noah Centineo, Noah Taylor, and Noah Emmerich.

Famous Noahs:

  • Noah Webster, American lexicographer
  • Noah Wylie, American actor, best known for his role as Dr. John Carter on "E.R."
  • Noah Centineo, American actor, best known for his role in the Netflix movie series "To All the Boys I've Loved Before"
  • Noah Emmerich, American actor, best known for his role in the FX series "The Americans"
  • Noah Taylor, British-Australian actor best known for his role as Locke in the HBO series "Game of Thrones"
  • Noah Schnapp, American actor best known for his role as Will Byers in the Netflix series, "Stranger Things"
  • Noah Jackson, Former American football player who played for 10 seasons with the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • Noah Syndergaard, American professional baseball pitcher for the New York Mets
  • Noah Ringer, American actor and martial arts practitioner known for his role in "The Last Airbender"
  • Noah Hoffman, American Olympic cross country skier who competed in the 2014 and 2018 Winter Olympics
  • Noah Cyrus, American singer, actress, and daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus

Famous Fictional Noahs:

  • Noah Solloway, Fictional character in the Showtime series "The Affair"
  • Noah Bennet, Fictional character in the NBC series "Heroes"
  • Noah Joad, Fictional character in John Steinbeck's novel "The Grapes of Wrath"
  • Noah Calhoun, Fictional main character in the novel "The Notebook" by Nicholas Sparks

Famous Noas:

  • Noa James, American rapper based in California
  • Noa Lindberg, American actress, producer, and author
  • Noa Netanyahu, daughter of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
  • Noa Tishby, Israeli actress, writer and model

More Baby Names

Still searching for the perfect baby name? Check out these related baby name lists for even more options:

2 Sources
Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Social Security Administration. Get ready for baby: Popularity of a name.

  2. Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society. Noah Webster history.

By Simone Scully
Simone is the health editorial director for performance marketing at Verywell. She has over a decade of experience as a professional journalist covering pregnancy, parenting, health, medicine, science, and lifestyle topics.