Ivan (name)

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Gender Male
Word/name Slavic, from Greek; from Hebrew
Other names
Related names Evan, Ike, Van, Vaughn, Vaughan, Ian, Iain, John, Juan, Juana, Ivana, Jolyon, Jovan, Johann, Johannes, Hans, Giovanni, Vance, Yahya

Ivan is a Christian male given name that is primarily associated with Slavic languages. It is the most common Slavic variant of the name "John".


Ivan is the common Slavic Latin spelling, while Cyrillic spelling is two-fold: in Bulgarian, Russian, Macedonian, Serbian, Montenegrin it is Иван, while in Belarusian and Ukrainian it is Iван.

It is the Slavic relative of the Latin name Johannes, corresponding to English John.[1] This Slavic version of the name originates from New Testament Greek Ἰωάννης (Iōánnēs) rather than from the Latin Io(h)annes. The Greek name is in turn derived from Hebrew יוֹחָנָן (Yôḥānān, meaning “‘Yahweh is gracious’”). The name is ultimately derived from the Biblical Hebrew name יוחנן (pronounced [joχanan]), short for יהוחנן (pronounced [jəhoχanan]), meaning "Yahweh is merciful". Common surnames derived from the name Ivan, are Ivanović commonly used in Montenegro and Serbia, and Ivanov, commonly used in Russia and Bulgaria. "Ivanovich" is a Russian patronymic/middle name meaning "son of Ivan/John" or "Ivanson/Johnson".


The name is common among Bulgarians, Montenegrins, Russians, Macedonians, Serbs, Croats, Belarusians, Ukrainians and to a smaller extent Czechs[2] and Slovaks. Popular variations include Jovan and Joan.

Ivan is the most common male name in Bulgaria[3] and Croatia.[4] In Serbia, it was the 9th most common male name in the period of 1971–1980; 6th in 1981–1990; 9th in 1991–2000.[5]

Since the 20th century, it has also been used as a popular given name among Italian (both the original form and the italianized version, Ivano), Spanish (as Iván), and Portuguese (sometimes Ivã) speaking peoples.


Its female form is Ivana. Ivanka is a variation on Ivana.


Ivan was also occasionally used by Germans during World War II and Americans during the Cold War as a general name for the Soviets (Compare "Jerry" for the Germans or "Charlie" for the Vietnamese during World War II and the Vietnam War, respectively.).

Historical country-specific use[edit]


Ivan was the name of several Bulgarian tsars:

Other Bulgarians


Ivan was the name of many Croatian bans:


Ivan was the name of several Russian tsars throughout history:


Ivan was the name of numerous Ukrainian hetmans and other cossacks leaders

Czech Republic[edit]

Country-neutral use[edit]