What does Miriam mean?
Miriam \m(i)-riam\ as a girls' name is pronounced MEER-ee-em. It is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of Miriam is "star of the sea". From Miryam, an older version of the name Mary. Other possible meanings are "wished-for child", "rebellion" or "sea of bitterness". Biblical: the sister of Moses, who saved his life as a baby when she hid him in a basket among the rushes at the river's edge for the Pharoah's daughter to find. The name was revived in the 18th century. Singer Miriam Makeba.
Miriam has 22 more related variations via Mary: Malia, Mara, Maria, Marian▼, Mariana, Mariann▼, Marice, Marie▼, Mariel▼, Marin, Marion▼, Marita, Marja, Marjan, Marla▼, Marya, Mayria, Meriel, Moira, Morag, Murial and Muriel▼.
Miriam is a very prominent first name for women (#285 out of 4276, Top 7%) but an unusual surname for all people. (2000 U.S. Census)
Displayed below is the birth name popularity of Miriam for girls. Miriam reached its apex rank of #150 in the U.S. during 1910-1919, and is at #305 currently. (2014 Birth Statistics)
Displayed below is a comparison of the popularity of the girl name Miriam and related names. Malia (#345 a year ago), Mara (#695), Maria (#115), Mariam (#568), Marian, Mariana (#331), Mariann, Marianne, Marie (#579), Mariel, Marin, Marion, Marita, Marla, Mary (#120), Maryam (#597), Mimi, Mitzi, Moira, Muriel and Myriam are the prominent varying forms of Miriam (#305 a year ago) ranked in the Top 1000. These girl names reached the peak of their popularity during the years 1950-1959 (usage of 0.3874%) and have become significantly less popular since (usage 0.243%, down 37.3%), with versions such as Marie, Marla, Mitzi, Muriel and Myriam becoming somewhat dated. The more fashionable birth names here are Malia (#345), Mara (#695), Mariam (#568), Mariana (#331) and Maryam (#597), with Mariana enjoying a rebound in popularity. (2014 Birth Statistics)