🔼The name Anna: Summary
- Favor, Grace
- From the verb חנן (hanan), to be gracious.
🔼The name Anna in the Bible
The name Anna shows up only once in the Bible. She is a prophetess in Jerusalem who testifies about the identity of the infant Jesus, together with a male prophet named Simeon. Both Simeon and Anna are well advanced in years, but of Anna we know that she a daughter of Phanuel of Asher, and that she was a widow whose marriage lasted only seven years (Luke 2:36).
🔼Etymology of the name Anna
The name Anna is probably the Greek version of the Hebrew name Hannah. Both come from the common Hebrew verb חנן (hanan), meaning to be gracious or to be compassionate:
The verb חנן (hanan) means to be gracious or to favor. Nouns חן (hen), חנינה (hanina), תחנה (tehinna) and תחנון (tahanun) mean favor or grace. Adverb חנם (hinnam) means freely or gratis, and adjective חנון (hannun) means gracious.
However, it should be noted that the name Anna could also be construed as a transliteration of אנא ('anna'), which is an emphasized particle of entreaty:
It's pretty safe to conclude that the name Anna means Favor or Grace, but it also means Ah! Now!.