Joshua (name)

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Karolingischer Buchmaler um 840 001.jpg
Joshua and the Israelite people by Karolingischer Buchmaler, c.840
Pronunciation /ˈɒʃuə/,[1]
Gender male
Word/name Hebrew Yehoshua
Meaning "Yahweh is salvation"
Other names
Related names Josh, Jesus, Josue

Joshua is a Biblical given name derived from the Hebrew Yehoshua (יהושע‎). The name was a common alternative form of the name יֵשׁוּעַ – yēšūă which corresponds to the Greek spelling Ἰησοῦς (Iesous), from which, through the Latin Iesus, comes the English spelling Jesus.[5][6]

As a result of the origin of the name, a majority of people before the 17th century who have this name are Jewish. A variant, truncated form of the name, Josh, gained popularity in the United States in the 1970s.


Information from the United Kingdom's Office for National Statistics from 2003 to 2007 shows "Joshua" among the top-five given names for newborn males.[7] In Scotland, the popularity of "Joshua" has been substantially lower than in the rest of the United Kingdom, appearing at rank 35 in 2000 and rising to rank 22 in 2006.[8][9]

Biblical figures[edit]

  • Joshua, leader of the Israelites after the death of Moses
  • Joshua the High Priest, High Priest ca. 515-490 BCE after the return of the Jews from the Babylonian Captivity

Ancient world[edit]

Ordered chronologically
  • Joshua ben Perachiah (given name יהושע‎ = Yehoshua), Nasi (prince) of the Sanhedrin in the latter half of the 2nd century BCE
  • Joshua ben Hananiah (given name יהושע‎ = Yehoshua) (died 131), a tanna (sage)
  • Joshua ben Levi, Jewish amora (scholar) in the first half of the third century
  • Joshua the Stylite, author of a chronicle of the war between the Later Roman Empire and the Persians between 502 and 506

Medieval period[edit]

Modern era[edit]

Pre-20th century[edit]

20th and 21st centuries[edit]

  • Joshua Ang (born 1989), Singaporean film actor
  • Josh Barnett (born 1977), American mixed martial artist and professional wrestler
  • Joshua Bartholomew (born 1984), Canadian singer-songwriter, musician and producer
  • Josh Beckett (born 1980), American former Major League Baseball pitcher
  • Joshua Bell (born 1967), American violinist and conductor
  • Joshua Blahyi, better known by his nom de guerre General Butt Naked (born 1971), Liberian former warlord
  • Joshua Ilika Brenner (born 1976), Mexican swimmer
  • Joshua Cardwell (1910–1982), politician in Northern Ireland
  • Joshua Chelanga (born 1973), Kenyan long-distance runner
  • Joshua Clottey (born 1977), Ghanaian professional boxer and former IBF welterweight champion
  • Josh Cooper (cryptographer) (1901–1981), British cryptographer
  • Josh Cooper (defensive end) (born 1980), American football player, formerly in the National Football League
  • Josh Culbreath (born 1932), American retired hurdler
  • Joshua Dariye (born 1957), Nigerian politician
  • Ralph Joshua Dionisio (born 1994), Filipino actor
  • Josh Duggar (born 1988), Disgraced American reality TV participant and political activist
  • Josh Duhamel (born 1972), American actor and former model
  • Josh Dun (born 1988), American drummer, currently in the band Twenty One Pilots
  • Joshua Eagle (born 1973), Australian tennis coach and former player
  • Joshua Fernandez (born 1974), Malaysian film director
  • Joshua Fishman (born 1926), American linguist
  • Josh Gibson (1911–1947), American Negro league baseball catcher
  • Joshua Oupa Gqozo (born 1952), former military ruler of the former homeland of Ciskei in South Africa
  • Josh Groban (born 1981), American singer, songwriter, actor and record producer
  • Josh Hamilton (born 1981), American Major League baseball player
  • Josh Hartnett (born 1978), American actor and movie producer
  • Josh Homme (born 1973), American singer, songwriter, musician, record producer and actor
  • Josh Howard (born 1980), American basketball player, formerly in the National Basketball Association
  • Josh Hutcherson (born 1992), American actor
  • Josh Jasper (born 1987), All-American college football placekicker
  • Joshua Kennedy (born 1982), Australian former soccer player
  • Joshua Andrew Koenig (1968–2010), American actor and human rights activist
  • Josh Kronfeld (born 1971), New Zealand former rugby union flanker
  • Joshua Livestro (born 1970), Dutch columnist and political writer
  • Josh Mahoney (born 1977), former Australian rules footballer
  • Josh McDaniels (born 1976), American National Football League offensive coordinator and former head coach
  • Josh Morris, several individuals
  • Josh Mostel (born 1946), American actor
  • Joshua Neustein (born 1940), Polish-born American visual artist
  • Joshua Owusu (born 1948), Ghanaian retired triple jumper and long jumper
  • Josh Peck (born 1986), American actor
  • Joshua Perper (born 1932), Romanian-born American forensic pathologist and toxicologist
  • Joshua Radin (born 1974), American singer-songwriter
  • Josh Radnor (born 1974), American actor, director, producer and screenwriter
  • Josh Satin (born 1984), American former Major League Baseball player
  • Josh Server (born 1979), American actor and comedian
  • Joshua Simon (fl. 21st century), Israeli art curator, writer and filmmaker
  • Joshua Smith (disambiguation)
  • Josh Tordjman (born 1985), Canadian hockey goaltender
  • Josh Wagenaar (born 1985), Canadian former footballer
  • Joshua Wheeler (born 1975), American Delta Force Operator, first American service member killed in action while fighting ISIS
  • Josh Whitesell (born 1982), American former Major League Baseball and Nippon Professional Baseball player
  • Josh Widdicombe, English stand-up comedian and presenter
  • Josh Wilcox (born 1974), American former National Football League player
  • Josh Zeid (born 1987), American baseball pitcher, former in Major League Baseball

Fictional characters[edit]

  • Josh Bauer, a minor character in season 6 of the American television series 24
  • Joshua Christopher, in the Japanese anime/manga Chrono Crusade
  • Joshua Clay (debut 1977), DC Comics superhero Tempest
  • Joshua Deets (debut 1985), a recurring character in the Lonesome Dove American novel series
  • the title character of Joshua Jones (1991–1992), a Welsh children's television series
  • Josh Lyman (1999–2006), in the American television series The West Wing
  • Josh Nichols (2004–2007), in the American television series Drake & Josh
  • Joshua, a computer/artificial intelligence in the 1983 movie WarGames

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Joshua at Oxford Dictionaries Online
  2. ^ A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament Francis Brown, with S.R. Driver and C.A. Briggs, based on the lexicon of William Gesenius. Oxford: Clarendon Press. p. 221 & 446
  3. ^ Blue Letter Bible. "Dictionary and Word Search for Yĕhowshuwa` (Strong's 03091)". Blue Letter Bible. 1996–2008. 16 Feb 2008.
  4. ^ Behind the name – Joshua- feminine form
  5. ^ Ilan, Tal (2002). Lexicon of Jewish Names in Late Antiquity Part I: Palestine 330 BCE–200 CE (Texte und Studien zum Antiken Judentum 91). Tübingen, Germany: J.C.B. Mohr. p. 129. 
  6. ^ Stern, David (1992). Jewish New Testament Commentary. Clarksville, Maryland: Jewish New Testament Publications. pp. 4–5. 
  7. ^ "Top 100 names for baby boys in England and Wales". National Statistics Online. Office for National Statistics. 2007-12-19. Retrieved 2008-02-17. (#2 2003–2005; #3 2006; #4 2007) 
  8. ^ "Top 100 boys' and names, Scotland, 2000 (provisional) – listed alphabetically" (PDF). Occasional papers. General Register Office for Scotland. 2000. 
  9. ^ "Top 100 boys' and names, Scotland, 2000 (provisional) – listed alphabetically" (PDF). Occasional papers. General Register Office for Scotland. 2006-12-18.