Rudolf Simek says the name is etymologically related to the Old Norse herja and Old High German herjón (meaning "devastate"), and derives from Proto-Germanic word *Herjaza. Simek notes that the Continental Germanic goddess name Hariasa (attested from a now lost 2nd century stone found in Cologne, Germany) also derives from *Herjaza, but says that "it is almost impossible to say whether Herja was an original name of a goddess including among the North Germanic peoples," and that "an independent development is equally likely in the case of a 'goddess of war'."
- Jónsson (1973:678).
- Simek (2007:143). For Hariasa, Simek (2007:131).