Meaning and name origin
Rachel \r(a)-chel\ as a girl's name is pronounced RAY-chel. It is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of Rachel is "ewe, female sheep". Biblical: Jacob's wife, described as being "beautiful in form and countenance". Jennifer Aniston's character in the popular TV series "Friends" was named Rachel. Rachelle (ra-SHELL) is a variant pronunciation; Raquel is popular in Spain. See also Richelle and Rochelle. Actresses Raquel Welch, Rachel Ward, Rachel Griffins; author Rachel Carson.
Rachel has 30 variant forms: Rachael▼, Racheal▼, Rachelanne, Rachelce, Rachele, Racheli, Rachell, Rachelle▼, Rachil, Rae▼, Raechel, Raechell, Rahel, Rahil, Rakel, Raquel▼, Raquela, Raquella, Raquelle, Ray▼, Raychel, Raychelle, Rashell, Rashelle, Raychel, Rechell, Shell, Shelley▼, Shellie▼ and Shelly▼.
Rachel is a very popular first name for females (#79 out of 4276, Top 2%) and also a very popular surname or last name for all people (#12538 out of 88799, Top 14%) (2000 U.S. Census).
Displayed below is the baby name popularity of the name Rachel for girls. Rachel reached its highest rank of #9 in the U.S. in 1996. (2014 statistics).
Displayed below is a comparison of the popularity of the girl name Rachel and its variant forms. Popular variation forms ranked in the Top 1000/100 are Rachel (#155), Raquel (#697), Rochelle, Shelley, Shellie, Shelly, Richelle, Ray, Rachelle, Rae, Rachael and Racheal. (2014 statistics).
Rachel is also pronounced similarly to Richel, Richele, Rochele and Rochell. Other suggested similar baby names are Racquel, Raizel, Rayzel and Richela. These names tend to be less commonly used than Rachel.