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Meaning and Origin of: Joseph

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First name origins & meanings:

  • Hebrew : He shall add

Last name origin & meaning:

  • English, German, French, and Jewish : from the personal name, Hebrew Yosef ‘may He (God) add (another son)’. In medieval Europe this name was borne frequently but not exclusively by Jews; the usual medieval English vernacular form is represented by Jessup. In the Book of Genesis, Joseph is the favorite son of Jacob, who is sold into slavery by his brothers but rises to become a leading minister in Egypt (Genesis 37–50). In the New Testament Joseph is the husband of the Virgin Mary, which accounts for the popularity of the given name among Christians.
  • A bearer of the name Joseph with the secondary surname Langoumois (and therefore presumably from the Angoumois region of France) is documented in Quebec City in 1718.

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