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Updated March 27, 2024

Table of contents

Boy name origins & meanings

  • Hebrew : Breath

What does Abel mean and stand for?

The name Abel is of Hebrew origin and means "breath." It is from the Hebrew name Hevel, meaning the same thing. In England, it was popular during both the Middle Ages and the Puritan era.

Syllables: 2

Boy name variations

How Popular Is The Name Abel

Family name origins & meanings

  • Common European surname : from the personal name Abel, which is of Biblical origin and was used as a Christian name in many countries of Europe. In the Book of Genesis Abel is a son of Adam, murdered by his brother Cain (Genesis 4:1–8). In Christian tradition he is regarded as representative of suffering innocence. The Hebrew form of the name is Hevel, from a vocabulary word meaning ‘breath’.
  • German : from the personal name Abel, a pet form of Albrecht (see Albert).

Famous people who gave their babies this name


According to Social Security Administration data, Abel has decreased in popularity after looking like it was on an upwards trend from 2014 to 2015. It has fluctuated quite a bit in the last 10 years, but it has maintained in the top 200.

However, it is the 9th most popular name on

According to Google search data analysis, in the last five years Abel was at its peak popularity in January 2017.

Abel was the name of Adam and Eve's unfortunate younger son and is very prominent in the Old Testament. It was also very popular in literature centuries ago, appearing in words by Dickens and Trollope. More recent namesakes include director Abel Gance, director Abel Ferrara, singer Abel Tesfaye (aka The Weeknd), as well as various presidents and members of royalty. Actors Amy Poehler and Will Arnett gave the name quite the bump in popularity when they chose it for their second son.

Where is it Popular?

Abel was searched for most often in the following states:

Nicknames for Abel

  • Ab
  • Abe
  • Eb
  • Ebbie

Pairs well with these middle names


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