What does John mean?
John \jo-hn\ as a boys' name is pronounced jahn. It is of Hebrew origin, and the meaning of John is "God is gracious". Biblical: the name of the longest-lived of the 12 apostles, who was especially loved by Christ. Also the name of John the Baptist, who baptized Christ in the Jordan river. Dozens of variant forms, given names and surnames, male and female, have been created in almost every language. Possibly the most popular name in history; kings, popes, saints, heroes, villains, and men of every degree between have borne the name. A contemporary trend seems to be to hyphenate Joh, Jean, Jon, Sean, and Shawn with various other names. Actors John Gielgud, John Barrymore, John Wayne, John Cusack, John Leguizamo, Johnny Depp; American Presidents John F. Kennedy, John Tyler, John Adams, John Quincy Adams; poet John Donne; Beatle John Lennon; composer Johannes Bach; football player John Elway; lawyer Johnnie Cochrane.
John has 85 variants: Anno, Ean▼, Eian, Eion, Euan, Evan▲, Ewan, Ewen, Gian, Giannes, Gianni▲, Giannis, Giannos, Giovanni▲, Hannes, Hanno, Hans▼, Hanschen, Hansel, Hansl, Heanno, Iain, Ian▲, Ioannes, Ioannis, Ivan, Ivann, Iwan, Jack, Jackie▼, Jacky▼, Jan▼, Jancsi, Janek, Janko, Janne, Janos, Jean▼, Jeannot, Jehan, Jenkin, Jenkins, Jens, Jian, Jianni, Joannes, Joao, Jock, Jocko, Johan▲, Johanan, Johann, Johannes, Johncarlo, Johnie▼, Johnmichael, Johnn, Johnnie▼, Johnny▼, Johnpatrick, Johnpaul▼, Johon, Jon▼, Jona, Jonnie, Jovan▼, Jovanney, Jovanney, Jovanni▼, Jovonni, Juan, Juanito, Juwan▼, Sean▲, Seann, Shane▲, Shaughn, Shaun▼, Shawn▲, Vanek, Vanko, Vanya, Yanni, Yanno and Zane▲.
For more on this name, see also related boy names Baptist, Battista, Chan, Dajon, Eoin, Evian, Gahan, Hovannes, Huon, Ieuan, Ioanis, Janak, Jones, Keon, Keoni, Sinjin, Yann, Yannis, Yochanan and Yovanny.
John has 23 more alternative forms via Jean, Jon, Sean, Shawn: Jeancarlo, Jeanclaude, Jeanluc, Jeanpaul, Jeanphilippe, Jeanpierre, Joncarlo, Joncorey, Jondavid, Jonluke, Jonn, Jonny, Jonpaul, Jontae, Jonte, Seancarlo, Seanmark, Seanpatrick, Shaundre, Shawnel, Shawnell, Shawnn and Shonn.
John has 23 feminine forms: Gianna, Gianina, Giovanna, Hansine, Ivana, Jan, Jana, Jane, Jean, Jeannine, Joan, Johanna, Johnella, Johnna, Jonina, Juanita, Shavonne, Shona, Sinead, Siobhan, Vanna, Yannick and Yoana.
John is a very prominent first name for males (#2 out of 1220, Top 1%) and also a very prominent last name for all people (#1172 out of 88799, Top 1%). (2000 U.S. Census)
Shown below is the birth name popularity of John for boys. John reached its peak position of #1 in the U.S. during 1910-1919, and is presently at #26. (Top 1000 Baby Names Records, 2014)
Shown below is an analysis of the usage of John and related names. Jack (#41 last year), Evan (#58), Ian (#77), Juan (#98), Giovanni (#125), Ivan (#132), Sean (#193), Zane (#224), Shane (#277), Johnny (#299), Shawn (#323), Gianni (#515), Johan (#579), Jon (#675), Shaun (#742), Jovanni (#943), Ean (#997), Hans, Jovan, Juwan, Jonnie, Hannes, Eoin, Euan, Ewan, Jones, Keon, Johnpaul, Jens, Jean, Jan, Jacky, Johann, Johannes, Hansel, Johnnie, Johnie, Iain and Jackie are the popular alternative forms of John (#26 last year). This boy name was at the apex of its popularity during the years 1980-1989 and is somewhat less popular today, with versions like Shaun, Ean, Jovanni, Keon and Jon becoming somewhat dated. The most trendy baby names among these are Gianni (#515), Zane (#224), Giovanni (#125), Ian (#77) and Evan (#58), with Evan and Giovanni going through a resurgence in usage. (Top 1000 Baby Names Records, 2014)