US Rabbinical Guide to Female Jewish Names from 1939

Adding to my recent series of Jewish given name lists (see my Names page for links to all the articles on names) is this list which comes from a US-published guide for pulpit rabbis. The book, called Hamadrikh (ְהַמַּדְרִיך), was initially published in 1939, and later revised in 1956. For decades it served as a unique guide to rabbis on how to perform specific rituals, with lists of prayers for things like marriage, circumcision, redeeming the first born, bar mitzvahs, dedicating a new torah, a new synagogue, laws related to visiting the sick, adding a name, the dying, etc. One important section deals offers templates for inscriptions to be used on gravestones. It’s likely many of the gravestones inscribed in the subsequent decades in the US followed the templates present in this book.

Excerpt from Hamadrikh

In addition, near the very end of the book are lists of Jewish given names. The names are intended to help rabbis determine what the actual name of a person was when dealing with Jewish legal documents (such as a marriage contract or a divorce certificate). The reason this was needed was many people were using names that were not considered names according to halacha (Jewish law). In essence the names they were using were nicknames, and not what was required on legal documents. As such, the list indicates when a name should not be used, and a formulation on what do when someone uses one of the names.

For example, if a woman wanted to get married and she told the rabbi her name was Basha (בשא), then the rabbi would write בת שבע המכונה בשא (Batsheva known as Basha) in the legal document. In addition to these legal names, the list also point to related names using the word ראה (see), as in ריבה, ראה רבקה (Riva, see Rivka) meaning that the name Riva is a variant of Rivka. Note that there are much fewer variants listed among the female names than among the male names.

This page contains the female names from the book, and includes 186 names. For the male names, see US Rabbinical Guide to Male Jewish Names from 1939.

While the book has English names lists for each name, it uses the halachic name only, so for each variant of a name, it will not show the English names (only repeat the halachic name). To help use this list I’ve added my own versions of the names in English. So in the table below you have the Hebrew name followed by my English version. Next you have a column for the halachic name, or the referenced name (see). Last, I include the English name present in the book for each name. Many of the book’s transliterations of names, even if for the actual name, use outdated versions of these names (such as using J for many names beginning with the letter י (yud), like Jochebed instead of Yocheved.

The table below is searchable, and you can sort by each column. For example, you can sort by Hebrew or English name, or sort by Halachic name to see all the names that are linked to those names.

Hebrew NameEnglish NameHalachic nameSeeHM English
אביגילAvigail (Abigail)Abigail
אידלEdelEidl
אידלעEdelehEidla
איטאItaItta
אַלטעAltaAlte
אסנהAsnahAsnah
אסנתOsnatAsenath
אסתרEstherEsther
באַסיעBasyaבתיהBithiah
באַשעBasheבתיהBithiah
בונאBunaBuna
בוניאBuniaBunia
בילאBailaBeila
בליקאBlikaBeilka
בלומאBlumaBluma
בלימלאBlimalehBlimela
ברוינאBroinaBroyna
בריינאBrainaBreina
בריינדלBreindelBreindl
ברכהBrachaBerochah
בשאBashaבת שבעBath-Sheba
בתיאBatyaBithiah
בת שבעBatshevaBath-Sheba
גאָלדאGoldaGolda
גוטאGutaGutta
גוטלGuttelGutl
גיטאGitaGitta
גיטלGittelGittl
גילהGilaGeilah
גינענדלGinendelGinendl
גליקאGlikaGlicka
גנענדילGenendelGnendle
גנעסיאGnesiahGnessia
געלאGellaGella
גרונאGrunaGruna
דאָבאDabaDoba
דאָברושDabrushDabrush
דאברושאDabrushaDabrusha
דבורהDevora (Deborah)Deborah
דוואָסאDevasaדבורהDeborah
דוואָשאDevashaדבורהDeborah
דינהDinaDinah
דרייזאDreizaDreiza
דרעזילDreizlDreizl
האָדאHodaHoda
האָדלHodlHodl
הגרHagarHagar
האָדסHadasHodes
הדסאHadasaHadassah
הינדאHindaHinda
הינדלHindelHindl
הענאHenaHena
הענדלHendelHendl
ויכנאVichnaVichna
זוסאZusaZussa
זיסלZisselZissl
זיסלאZissalehZissla
זלטאZlataZlatta
זלפאZilpahZilpah
זעלדאZeldaZelda
זעלמאZelmaSelma
חאַסיאChasyaHassia
חאַשאChashaHasha
חוהChava (Eve)Eva
חוואלסChavalsHvolas
חוואלשChavalshHvolash
חיהChayaHayyah
חיענאHenaHena
חנהChanaHannah
חסידהChasidaHasidah
טאָלצאTolzaToltza
טאמאראTamaraTamara
טאנאTanaTana
טויבאToibaToyba
טילאTillaTilla
טלצאToltzaToltza
טעמאTemmaTemma
טרוילאTroylaTroyla
טרינאTreinaTreina
טשאַרנאCharnaCharna
טשערנאChernaCherna
יאכאYochaיוכבדJochebed
יאכלוYochloיוכבדJochebed
יאָכאYachaיוכבדJochebed
יאכנאYachnaיוכבדJochebed
יהודיתYehudit (Judith)Judith
יוטאYutaJudith
יוטליןYutlinיוכבדJochebed
יוכבדYochevedJochebed
יטאYettaYetta
ינטאYentaYenta
יענטאYentahYenta
לאהLeahLeah
לויצאLoytzaLoytza
ליבאLeebaLibba
ליבקאLeebkaLibka
ליפקאLipkaLipka
מאַטלMattelMattl
מאַטלאMattelahMattla
מאַריאַשאMariashaMariasha
מחלהMachlaMahlah
מיכלהMichlahMichlah
מילכהMilkahMilcah
מינאMinaMinna
מינדלMindelMindl
מינקאMinkahMinka
מיראMiraMirra
מירלMirelMirl
מלכהMalkaMalkah
מנוחהMenuchaMenuhah
מערעMarahMary
מרגליתMargalitMargolith
מריםMiriamMiriam
נוחהNuchaNuhah
נחמהNechamaNehamah
נעכאNechaנחמהNehamah
נעכולNechelנחמהNehamah
נעכלאNechlaנחמהNehamah
נעמיNaomiNaomi
סאָסיאSusiaSossia
סימאSimaSimma
סלאַוואSlavaSlava
סלאָוואSlovaSlova
עטאEttaEtta
עטלEttelEthel
עכסהAchsaAchsah
עלאEllaElla
עלקאElkaElka
פויגלFigelFoygl
פיגוFiguFeigu
פייגאFaigaFeiga
פייעPiaPeya
פעסעPessaPessa
פעסיעPessiaPessia
פעסלPesselPessl
פערילPerelPerl
פעשאPeshaPessia
פראַדלFradelFradl
פרומאFrumahFruma
פרידלFreidelFridl
פריידאFraidaFreida
פריידלFreidelFreidl
צאַרטילTzartlTzartl
צאַרטלTzartlTzartl
צביהTzviaTziviah
צינאTzinaTzinna
ציפאTzipaTzippa
צירלTzirelTzirl
צפירהTzafiraZipporah
קילאKailaKeila
קלאַראKlaraClara
קענדלKendelKendl
קרוינאKroinaKroyna
קרינדלKreindelKreindl
ראדאRadahRhoda
ראלאReilahRalla
ראַשלRashelRashl
רבקהRivka (Rebecca)Rebecca
רויזאRozaRosa
רותRuthRuth
רחלRachelRachel
רחמהRuchamaRuhamah
ריבהRivaרבקהRebecca
ריזלRaizelReizl
רייכאReichaRycha
רייכלRaichelRychl
ריינאRainaRyna
רייצאRachaRytza
רייצלRachelRytzl
ריסאRisaRissa
ריקלReikelRickl
ריקלאRicklaRickla
רעלאRellaRella
רשקאRaushkaReshka
שבעShevaSheba
שולמיתShulamitShulamith
שינאShainaSheina
שינדלShaindelSheindl
שלומיתShlomitShelomith
שמחהSimchahSimhah
שפרהShifraShiphrah
שפרינצאShprintzahSprintza
שפרינצלShprintzelSprintzl
שרהSarahSarah
תמרTamarTamar
תרצהTirzaTirzah