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Muhammad (name)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Muhammad the Messenger of God", inscribed on the gates of the mosque al-Masjid an-Nabawi
Meaning"praised", "worthy of all praises"[citation needed]
Region of originArabia
Other names
Alternative spellingMoohammed, Magomed, Mahmad, Mahammad, Mahammed, Mehmed, Mahmut, Mamadou, Muhammadu, Mahamed, Mohamad, Mohamed, Mohammad, Mohammed, Muhamad, Muhamed, Muhamet, Muhammed, Muhammet, Muhummud, Mahammud, Mehmet, Mohd. Muh., Mahamid, Mochamad, Mohamud, Mokhmad, Magomad, Mukhammad, Md., Mo., M., Mohammad, Muhammad,

Muhammad (Arabic: مُحَمَّد, romanizedMuḥammad), also spelled Muhammed, Muhamad, Mohammad, Mohammed, Mahammad, Maxammed, Mehemmed, Mohamad, Mohamed, Mehmet, or in a variety of other ways, is an Arabic given male name meaning 'Praiseworthy'. The name comes from the passive participle of the Arabic verb ḥammada (حَمَّدَ), meaning 'to praise', which itself comes from the triconsonantal Semitic root Ḥ-M-D. Believed to be the most popular name in the world, by 2014 it was estimated to have been given to 150 million men and boys.[2]

The name has been banned for newborn children in the Xinjiang region of China since 2017,[3] as well as for the Ahmadi community in Pakistan.[4]


The name Muḥammad is the standard, primary transliteration of the Arabic given name, محمد, that comes from the Arabic passive participle of ḥammada (حَمَّدَ), praise, and further from triconsonantal Semitic root Ḥ-M-D (praise); hence praised, or praiseworthy. However, its actual pronunciation differs colloquially, for example, in Egyptian Arabic: IPA: [mæˈħæmːæd], while in exclusively religious contexts, talking about Islam: IPA: [moˈħæmːæd].[5]

The name has one of the highest numbers of English spelling variants in the world.[6] Other Arabic names from the same root include Mahmud, Ahmed, Hamed, Tahmid and Hamid.


Region/country Language Main Alternative
Arab world Arabic dialects Muhammad Mohammad, Mohammed, Mohamad, Mohamed
Maghreb Maghrebi Arabic Mohammed Mohamed, Mohammed, SiMohamed, Momo or Simo (Nickname)
Berber ⵎⵓⵃⴰⵏⴷ (Muḥand) Mohand, M'hand or M'hamed
Egypt Egyptian Arabic Mohamed
Coptic ⲙⲁϩ ⲙⲏⲧ (Mahmād)
Iran, Afghanistan Persian, Pashto, Dari Mohammad

Māmad (مامد)

Mamad (Nickname)
Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand Malay, Indonesian, various Muhammad Mohammad, Muhamad, Mochamad, Mohamad, Muhd, Mohd, Md, Mat, Mamat
Indonesia Javanese, Madurese ꦩꦠ꧀ (Mat) ꦩꦺꦴꦏꦩꦠ꧀ (Mokamat)
Bangladesh, India Bengali, Assamese, Sylheti মুহাম্মাদ (Muhammad) মুহাম্মদ (Muhammôd), মোহাম্মদ (Mohammôd)
Pakistan, India Urdu Mohammad (محمد) Mahammad, Muhammad
Turkey Turkish Mehmet Muhammet, Mehmed, Memet, Mehemmed
Azerbaijan Azerbaijani Məmməd Məhəmməd, Məhməd, Mamed
Uzbekistan Uzbek Muhammad (Муҳаммад) Mahmud, Mahamat, Mahammad
Kurdistan Kurdish Mihemed (محەمەد) Mehemed, مەحەمەد
Albania, Kosovo, North Macedonia Albanian Muhameti
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnian Muhamed Muhammed
United Kingdom English Muhammad Muhammed, Mohammad, Mohammed
Kazakhstan Kazakh Мұхаммед (Mukhammed) Махамбет (Makhambet)
Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyz Мукамбет (Mukambet) Мамбет (Mambet)
Senegal, West Africa various Mamadou Momo (nickname)
Somali peninsula Somali Mahamed Maxamed, Max'ed
Europe Latin Mahometus
Catalonia Catalan Mafumet
Italy Italian Maometto
Greece Greek Μωάμεθ (Moameth)
Spain Spanish Mahoma
Portugal Portuguese Maomé
France French Mahomet
Poland Polish Mahomet
Russia Russian Муха́ммед (Mukhammed) Магоме́д (Magomed), Магоме́т (Magomet), Моха́ммед (Mokhammed), Муха́ммад (Mukhammad)
Russia (Tatarstan) Tatar Мөхәммәт / Möxämmät / Möxəmmət
Russia (Chechnya) Chechen Мохьмад (Mokhmad) Магомад (Magomad), Магомед (Magomed), Мухьаммад (Mukhammad), Мухьаммед (Mukhammed)
China Chinese (See Ma) 穆罕默德 Mùhǎnmòdé
Uyghur مۇھەممەد (Muhammad) Mehmet
Israel Hebrew מוחמד (Mukhammad/ Muchammad)
Nigeria Hausa Muhammadu Muhammad, Mamadou, Mahamadou
Fiji Fijian Mometa
South Africa English / Afrikaans Muhammad Mohammad, Mohammed, Mohamad, Mohamed, Moegamat, Gamat (Nickname)

The name may be abbreviated to Md., Mohd., Muhd., Mhd., or simply M. because of its ubiquity. Its popularity has meant that it can become hard to distinguish people. In some cases it may be to keep a personal name less tied to a religious context. This is only done if the person has a second given name. Some men who have Muhammad (or variant) as a first name choose not to use it, as it is such a common name. Instead they use another given name. For example, Anwar Sadat, Hosni Mubarak, Siad Barre, Zia-ul-Haq, Ayub Khan, Nawaz Sharif and Shehbaz Sharif use their second given name.[citation needed]


According to the sixth edition of The Columbia Encyclopedia (2000), Muhammad is probably the most common given name in the world, including variations.[7] The Independent reported in 2014 that more than 150 million men and boys in the world bear the name Muhammad, which would make it the most popular name in the world.[8] Approximately 60% of people named Muhammad live in Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan.

It is sometimes reported that Muhammad is the most popular boy's name in all of Britain; however, this is based on combining multiple spelling variations such as Mohammed, but not combining spelling variants of popular British names such as Ollie and Olly.[9] Based on statistics for the 100 most popular boys' names in England and Wales, the combined count for Muhammad and Mohammed (6233) was higher than Oliver and Olly (6049), but lower than the combined count for Harry and Henry (7684).[10][11]

Mohammed and Mohamed were the most popular baby name in Département Seine-Saint-Denis (2002, 2008)[12] and in Marseilles (2007, 2009), France.[13] Similarly, since 2008 it has been the most popular baby boy name in Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium's most Muslim-populated cities.[14]

In May 2006, it was reported that statistics indicate that some 8,928 Danish Muslims carry the name Muhammad and that in 2004 alone, 167 new-born babies were registered.[15]

In 2009, Muhammad, the most common spelling variant, was ranked 430th in the US.[16] According to the Social Security Administration, Mohammad was ranked 589th, Mohammed 633rd, and Muhammad the 639th most popular first name for newborns in 2006.[17] In the 1990 United States census, the Muhammad variant of the spelling was ranked 4,194 out of 88,799 for people of all ages.[18][19]

In April 2017, the Chinese government prohibited parents from choosing the name Muhammad as the given name for a child. The list included more than two dozen names and was targeted at the 10 million Uighurs in the western region of Xinjiang.[20]

If all variants of Muhammad are counted, there are 15,723 people in Finland named Muhammad, accounting for 0.7% of the Finnish male population. The most common spelling is Mohamed, accounting for 38% of the Muhammad name carriers.[21][22]

Given name[edit]












  • Muhammadu Buhari, Nigerian politician who served as military dictator from 1983 to 1985, and democratically elected president from 2015 to 2023.






  • Mahathir Mohamad (born 1925), Malaysian politician; Prime Minister of Malaysia (1981–2003; 2018–2020)







  • Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad ibn Hazm (?–737), scholar
  • Ibrahim ibn Muhammad (630–632), the Islamic prophet's son
  • Qasim ibn Muhammad (598–600), the Islamic prophet's son
  • Abdullah ibn Muhammad (600–614), the Islamic prophet's son
  • Abd al-Raḥmān ibn Muḥammad (1332-1406) Arab historiographer and historian
  • Marwan ibn Muhammad
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad better known as Al-Saffah (r. 750–754) was the first Abbasid caliph and founder of Abbasid Caliphal dynasty.
  • Abu Ja'far Abdallah ibn Muhammad better known as Al-Mansur was the second Abbasid caliph from 754 to 775.
  • Ibrahim ibn al-Mahdi also known as Ibrahim ibn Muhammad was the Abbasid princess, singer and composer.
  • Ubaydallah ibn al-Mahdi, also known as Ubaydallah ibn Muhammad was the Abbasid princess and officer.
  • Ali ibn al-Mahdi, also known as Ali ibn Muhammad. was the son of Abbasid caliph al-Mahdi and his wife Rayta.
  • Musa al-Hadi also known as Musa ibn Muhammad was the fourth Abbasid caliph from 785 to 786.
  • Harun al-Rashid also known as Harun ibn Muhammad was the fifth Abbasid caliph from 786 to 809.
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad al-Mahdi was the son of Abbasid caliph al-Mahdi.
  • Isa ibn Muhammad al-Mahdi, was the youngest brother of Harun al-Rashid.
  • Musa ibn Muhammad al-Amin, was the son of Abbasid caliph al-Amin.
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad al-Amin was the second son of caliph Al-Amin.
  • Al-Wathiq (812–847), also known as Abu Ja'far Harun ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim was the Abbasid caliph from 842 to 847.
  • Al-Mutawakkil (822–861) also known as Ja'far ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim was the tenth Abbasid caliph from 847 to 861.
  • Muhammad ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim was the Abbasid prince and father of Al-Musta'in
  • Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim, was an Abbasid princess and the patron of Art and science.
  • Ali ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad al-Mu'tasim, one of the youngest sons of caliph al-Mu'tasim.
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad better known as Abdallah ibn al-Mu'tazz or simply as Ibn al-Muʿtazz was an Arab prince and poet.
  • Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad al-Muhtadi, was the son of Abbasid caliph al-Muhtadi.
  • Abdallah ibn Muhammad ibn al-Qa'im, better known as Al-Muqtadi was the caliph of Baghdad during later Abbasid period.



  • Hasan ibn Ali also known as Abu Muhammad Hasan ibn Ali, was the son of Ali ibn Abi Ṭalib, and caliph in 661.
  • Al-Hadi, also known as Abu Muhammad Musa al-Hadi, was the 4th Abbasid caliph.
  • Al-Muktafi also known as Abu Muhammad Ali, was the 17th Abbasid caliph from 902 – 13 August 908.
  • Al-Mustadi also known as Abu Muhammad Hasan ibn Yusuf al-Mustanjid was the Caliph in Baghdad from 1170 to 1180.


Derived names[edit]

Umm Muhammad[edit]

  • Umm Muhammad bint Salih, was the wife of Abbasid caliph Harun al-Rashid.
  • Hubshiya also known as Umm Muhammad was the mother of Abbasid caliph Al-Muntasir
  • Qurb, also known as Umm Muhammad was the mother of al-Muhtadi.
  • Ashin, also known as Umm Muhammad was the mother of 12th-century caliph of Baghdad al-Muqtafi.

Famous derived names[edit]

Legality and restrictions[edit]


In 2017 legislation made it illegal in China to give children names that the Chinese government deemed to "exaggerate religious fervor”.[25][26] This prohibition included a ban on naming children Muhammad.[26] The legislation was officially intended to prevent "religious extremism" among the country's Uighur minority, but may have been an act of persecution against the Uighur community.[27][28]


The government of Pakistan forbids members of its Ahmadi community from naming their children Muhammad.[29][30] Al Jazeera reported in 2021 that blasphemy charges had been filed against Ahmadis who wrote "Mohammed" on a wedding invitation in an unspecified amount of instances.[31]

See also[edit]



  1. ^ Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th edition
  2. ^ Dugan, Emily (15 August 2014). "Most popular baby names: The top 20 boys and girls names in England and Wales". Independent. Retrieved 12 May 2020.
  3. ^ Hernández, Javier C. (2017-04-25). "China Bans 'Muhammad' and 'Jihad' as Baby Names in Heavily Muslim Region". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-02-12.
  4. ^ "Amid bullets and 'blasphemy', Pakistan's Ahmadis struggle on". www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 2022-06-12.
  5. ^ "Muhammad- Dictionary"
  6. ^ Humanism, Culture, and Language in the Near East: Asma Afsaruddin, A. H. Mathias Zahniser - 1997 p 389
  7. ^ "MUHAMMAD, prophet of Islam. The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-07". 10 February 2009. Archived from the original on 10 February 2009. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Baby names: The top 20 boys and girls names in England and Wales". The Independent. 2014-08-15. Retrieved 2022-06-12.
  9. ^ Arnett, George (1 December 2014). "Is Muhammad the most popular boy's name in Britain?". the Guardian. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  10. ^ "Baby names for boys in England and Wales - Office for National Statistics".
  11. ^ "Baby names for boys in England and Wales - Office for National Statistics". www.ons.gov.uk. Retrieved 2021-09-02.
  12. ^ "Insee − Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques" (PDF). Insee. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  13. ^ "Les parents marseillais ont craqué pour Inès et MOHAMED". 24 February 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  14. ^ Verkruyssen, Freddy (24 November 2009). "EMMA EN NOAH ZIJN de populairste voornamen van 2008" (PDF) (in Dutch). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-10-11. Retrieved 2010-10-11.
  15. ^ "JTW News - "MUHAMMAD" Most Popular Among Danish Muslims". Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  16. ^ http://www.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/babyname.cgi; searched for MOHAMED
  17. ^ "Popular Baby Names". www.ssa.gov. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  18. ^ Unless otherwise noted, figures are from http://www.name-stats.com/search.php?subject=MUHAMMAD&submit=Search. They don't include different forms of spelling except for 2009 and 2010 for the UK.
  19. ^ "MUHAMMAD - Name Meaning, What does MUHAMMAD mean?". www.thinkbabynames.com. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  20. ^ HERNÁNDEZ, Javier C. (2017-04-25). "China bans certain baby names in heavily Muslim region". The Boston Globe. New York Times News Service. Retrieved 2017-04-26.
  21. ^ "Digi- ja väestötietovirasto".
  22. ^ "Digi- ja väestötietovirasto". verkkopalvelu.vrk.fi. Retrieved 2021-09-02.
  23. ^ Alford T. Welch; Ahmad S. Moussalli; Gordon D. Newby (2009). "Muḥammad". In John L. Esposito (ed.). The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic World. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Archived from the original on 11 February 2017. The Prophet of Islam was a religious, political, and social reformer who gave rise to one of the great civilizations of the world. From a modern, historical perspective, Muḥammad was the founder of Islam. From the perspective of the Islamic faith, he was God's Messenger (rasūl Allāh), called to be a "warner," first to the Arabs and then to all humankind.{{cite encyclopedia}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  24. ^ "After a 26- year legal battle, Canada boots convicted terrorist Mahmoud Mohammad Issa Mohammad | Brantford Expositor".
  25. ^ Shepherd, Christian; Blanchard, Ben (30 March 2017). "China sets rules on beards, veils to combat extremism in Xinjiang". Reuters. Archived from the original on 2019-12-21. Retrieved 11 December 2019.
  26. ^ a b Hernandez, Javier C. (25 April 2017). "China bans 'Muhammad,' 'Jihad' as baby names in Muslim region". The Seattle Times. The New York Times.
  27. ^ "China Issues Ban on Many Muslim Names in Xinjiang". VOA. Retrieved 2022-06-12.
  28. ^ "China bans list of Islamic names in restive Xinjiang region". AP NEWS. 2017-04-27. Retrieved 2022-06-12.
  29. ^ Country Policy and Information Note Pakistan: Ahmadis
  30. ^ Pakistan
  31. ^ "Amid bullets and 'blasphemy', Pakistan's Ahmadis struggle on". www.aljazeera.com. Retrieved 2022-06-12.