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Ishmael meaning and name origin
Ishmael \i-sh-mael\ as a boy's name is pronounced EES-mah-el. It is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of Ishmael is "God listens". Biblical: the son of Abraham by Sarah's Egyptian slave woman Hagar. Among his descendants were Bedouin tribes and Muhammad (seventh century), founder of Islam. Literary: because Ishmael was cast out to wander in the desert, the name is often used symbolically, as in Herman Melville's novel "Moby Dick". Ismael is the Spanish form; Ismail is Arabic.
Ishmael has 4 variant forms: Ismael, Ismail, Ysmael and Ysmail.
View a list of the 3 names that reference Ishmael.
Popularity of Ishmael
Ishmael is not a popular first name for men but a very popular surname or last name for all people (#14030 out of 88799). (1990 U.S. Census)
Displayed below is the baby names popularity of the name Ishmael for boys. (2012 statistics) Compare Ishmael with its variant forms and related boy baby names.