& Meaning •
Meaning and etymology of the name Hannah
As popular the graceful name Hannah is in our day and age, in the Bible it occurs only one. The one Biblical Hannah is the mother of Samuel and wife of Elkanah. The book of Samuel tells the heart-breaking story of Hannah, who was happily married to a man who wasn't all too clever. When she cries on account of her childlessness, Elkanah lamely responds by saying, "Am I not better to you than ten sons?"
No, he wasn't. And the fact that Elkanah was also married to Peninnah, who had children, probably also didn't help Hannah much.
Hannah flees to Shiloh, to seek refuge in the tabernacle complex. There she is met by high priest Eli, who sees her stagger and assumes she's drunk. After Hannah explains herself, Eli offers her peace and expresses his wish that her prayer will be heard. Soon after that, Hannah conceives of Samuel.
The name Hannah comes from (hanan) meaning be gracious, pity, beseech, implore. HAW Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament states that this verb 'depicts a heartfelt response by someone who has something to give to one who has a need.' Derivatives are (hen), meaning favor, grace; (hinnam), meaning freely (for nothing); (hannun) means gracious; (hanina) means favor; (tehinna) means supplication.
For a meaning of the name Hannah, NOBS Study Bible Name List reads Graciousness and Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names reads Gratuitous Gift, although neither a giving nor the rather inelegant redundancy are implied by the Hebrew.
Related names are
•Look for baby names
•Augment your Hebrew language study
•Deepen your knowledge of the Bible
•Enrich your cruise to or travel holiday in Israel