The Origin and Meaning of the Name Rebecca

A musical name that's full of magic and fun. Why does it convey these feelings? Discover the origin and meaning of the name Rebecca.
The Origin and Meaning of the Name Rebecca

Last update: 19 June, 2022

You’ll probably be surprised to discover the origin and meaning of the name Rebecca, its history, this saint’s day, and the famous people who receive or have received the honor of being so named. All these facts and more, we’ll present to you below.

Whether you want to name the little queen of the house Rebecca or because you have a loved one who carries this precious name, take note of everything you should know about it.

What’s the origin and meaning of Rebecca?

As studies point out, experts believe that the name Rebecca comes from the Hebrew term Rivqa. In turn, this would derive from the Proto-Semitic language, which is related to Aramaic. As for the latter origin, its meaning alludes to the ‘mother earth’, that’s to say, to fertility itself.

According to etymology experts at the University of Chile, the meaning of Rebecca in Hebrew is ‘yoke’, although some data suggest that it represents ‘the little one who provokes a connection’ or ‘one who is captivating’ to others.

A biblical scroll.
The origins of the name Rebecca are found in the Old Testament and its roots are believed to be Aramaic.


When was the first mention of Rebecca? According to history, the name dates back to the Old Testament, with the biblical character of Rebecca, wife of Isaac (son of the patriarch Abraham), and mother of Jacob and Esau.

Since then, many important women have been so named. For example, Rebecca Guarna, scientist, surgeon, herbalist, writer, and teacher in the Middle Ages, or Saint Rebecca of Himalaya herself, a 19th-century nun.

Rebecca’s Saint’s Day

Saint Rebecca of Himlaya, or Rafqa Pietra Choboq Ar-Rayès, was born in Lebanon. Her mother died when she was still very young. Her father sent her as a servant to a house and when she returned, he had married another woman. Her stepmother’s son wanted to marry her, but she didn’t want to marry him. At that moment, the girl asked God for help and became a nun, under the name of Sister Rafqa.

The saint’s day of St. Rebecca of Himlaya is March 23 due to the woman’s work to help the sick and needy.

So, if a special person among your family or friends is named Rebecca, don’t miss the opportunity to congratulate her and tell her this wonderful story.

Famous people with the name Rebecca

Being such a captivating choice, there are many people who carry this name. Among some celebrities, we mention the following:

  • Rebeca Gerschman: Argentine scientist and researcher. She’s recognized for her contributions to the world of biology and physiology.
  • Rebecca Ann Heineman: American videogame designer and programmer. Undoubtedly, she’s one of the great veterans of the videogame industry and the founder of four companies.
  • Rebeca Valenzuela: Mexican athlete, winner of the bronze medal in javelin throw and two gold medals at the Pan American Games in Toronto in 2015.

Variants around the world

Rebecca is one of the most popular names for girls in the United States (although in 2007 it had fallen to 105th place), Australia, Canada, Ireland, the United Kingdom, and Sweden. In this regard, according to statistics, some 634,297 people share this first name in the United States alone.

  • German: Rebekah or Becka
  • Polish: Becke or Rebecka
  • Arabic: Rifga
  • Bulgarian: Rebeka
  • Danish and Dutch: Rebekka
  • Slovak: Rebeka
  • French: Rebecca or Rebèque
  • Greek: Revekka
  • Hebrew: Riva
  • Siberian: Ribga
  • Hungarian: Baka
  • Spanish: Rebeca
  • Swedish: Rebec
A baby girl looking at herself in the mirror.
If when you look at your daughter for the first time, her gaze captivates you, perhaps the name Rebecca fits her perfectly.

Feel lucky now that you know the origin and meaning of the name Rebecca!

Now that you know all the details of this precious option (worthy of a real fighter and warrior who’s passionate about life), it’s time to take action and name your daughter Rebecca. No doubt, you won’t regret it.

At the same time, the diminutives to affectionately refer to people with this name are Reba, Becca, or Becky.

Don’t miss the opportunity to share this information with that loved one who carries this name, whether she be your mother, grandmother, friend, girlfriend, or daughter.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.