Matthew (name)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Gender Male
Word/name Hebrew
Meaning "Gift of Yahweh"[1]
Other names
Alternative spelling Mathew
Nickname(s) Matt, Mat, Matty, Mattie, Macey,[2] Hew
Usage Most Common usage of Matthew or Mathew in the English-speaking world[3]
Related names Mathers, Matthews, Matthewson, Mathew, Matt, Matty, Maddy, Matilda, Matthias, Mathias, Thew, Hew, Bartholomew, Mitt, Macey, Mace, May, Mayhew
Popularity see popular names

Matthew (/ˈmæθjuː/; MATH-ew) is a given name that ultimately comes from the Hebrew name Matityahu. Saint Matthew was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus in Christian Theology.[4][5][6][7]

The Hebrew name "מַתִּתְיָהוּ" (Matityahu) was transliterated into Greek to "Ματταθίας" (Mattathias),[8] which was shortened to "Ματθαῖος" – (Matthaios). Deceptively, it is therefore unrelated to θεῖος (theios) meaning divine (adjective, e.g. theology) or sulfur (Koine noun, e.g. thiol group).[9] The Greek Ματθαῖος was Latinised as Matthaeus, which became Matthew in English. It is commonly shortened to Matt.

The name is also sometimes used as an anglicisation of the Irish name Mathúin, meaning bear.[10][11]

The name Matthew became popular during the Middle Ages in North-West Europe, and appears in many European languages. The name has been very common throughout the English-speaking world since the 1970s.[3] Matthew has been one of the 1,000 most popular male names in Australia, Canada and United States. Currently, it is the 15th most popular name in Ireland.[12][13] In the United Kingdom, it was among the 10 most popular male names through the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, and was ninth as recently as 2001.[14]

Translations in other languages[edit]

  • Amharic: ማቴዎስ? (Mathewos, Mateos)
  • Armenian: Մատթէոս, Մաթևոս (Mat.teos)
  • Chinese: 马修 (simplified) /馬修 (traditional) (mǎ xiū)
  • Czech: Matěj, Matyáš, Matouš
  • Dutch: Matthijs, Mathis, Mathijs, Mattijs, Mattheus, Matthias, Thijs, Ties, Tijs