Boy Baby Name


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Quick Facts on Ben

  • Gender:
  • Boy
  • Origin:
  • English
  • Number of syllables:
  • 1
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 749
Simple meaning:
Son of the south; son of my old age

Characteristics of Ben

  • Communicative
  • Creative
  • Optimistic
  • Popular
  • Social
  • Dramatic
  • Happy

Etymology & Historical Origin - Ben

Ben is most commonly considered a short form of Benjamin. Benjamin is a Hebrew name borne from the Bible; he was the youngest son of Jacob’s 12 boys. His mother, Rachel, died giving birth to him in Genesis 35:18. “And as her soul was departing (for she was dying), she called his name Ben-oni; but his father called him Benjamin.” The name “benoni” translates to “son of my sorrow” – but Jacob did not want his last son to bear such an ill-omened name stemming from his mother’s death, so he called him “Benyamin” instead. The likely Hebrew translation of Benjamin is “son of the south” since the child was Jacob’s only son born in Canaan, south of Mesopotamia. However, “yamim” is also thought to be a translation of the word “years” in Hebrew, bringing another variant to the name’s root etymology as “son of my old age” referring to the fact that Benjamin was Jacob’s last child born to him when he was an old man. Interestingly, in the Middle Ages (5th-15th centuries), the name was often given to boys whose mothers had died in childbirth. Today, it no longer bears such ill-fated associations, and is used widely used among all English-speakers, Jews and Christians alike. Aside from Ben’s obvious association with Benjamin from the Bible, Ben could also be considered a short form of any masculine name starting with the “Ben” prefix such as Benedict, Bennett, Benson or Bentley (Ben is even used as a short form for Reuben). As a stand-alone independently given name Ben has seen success in his own right. This short little one syllable three-lettered name is quite popular in Ireland, Northern Ireland and Scotland. It is also a Top 100 name in England and Austria.

Popularity of the Name Ben

As an independently given name Ben dates way back over 150 years. At the turn of the 20th century, in the year 1900, Ben was the 73rd most popular boy’s name in the country (and Benjamin was the 56th). Since the turn of the 20th century, however, and into the 21st, Ben has been on a slow and steady decline. Benjamin, on the other hand, has held fast to a Top 100 position. In other words, American parents prefer the traditional name Benjamin rather than simply “Ben” as a legally given first name. Indeed, most of the Bens we’re familiar with today in popular culture (e.g., Ben Affleck, Ben Harper, Ben Stiller) were all born Benjamin. Our Federal Reserve Chairman, however, was born just Ben Bernanke. Names like Alex vs. Alexander, Sam vs. Samuel and Max vs. Maximilian are much more colloquial and informal. They are snappy one-syllable nicknames that work well as stand-alone first names. But traditional parents will opt for their longer versions. Some people find names like Mike, Ben, Sam and Max a little too common and ordinary but most people would agree they are solid name choices. The only thing we strongly suggest is don’t pick the name Ben for your son if your last name happens to be Dover (a little Bart Simpson joke for you).
Popularity of the Boy Name Ben
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Ben

  • Popular Songs on Ben

    Popular Songs on Ben

    Ah sì ben mio - performed by Andrea Bocelli

    Ben - a song by Jennifer Love Hewitt

    Ben - a song by Michael Jackson

    Ben - a song by Boyzone

    Ben Moves To California - a song by The Broadways

    Ben Wah Balls - a song by Blink 182

    Bennie and the Jets - is a song by Elton John

    Bill and Ben - a song by Catherine Wheel

    Dear Ben - a song by Jennifer Lopez

    Ellen and Ben - a song by The Dismemberment Plan

    Stumbled into Ben - is a song by Kevin Seconds

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Ben

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Ben

    Ben and Me: An Astonishing Life of Benjamin Franklin by His Good Mouse Amos (Robert Lawson) - Ever wonder where inventors get their ideas? As it turns out, the great inventor Benjamin Franklin got his best ideas from a mouse named Amos! Funny, interesting and wise, this classic tale has been a favorite for generations. Once you've met Amos and read his account, you'll never think of Ben Franklin-or American history-quite the same way. Explore this historical time period even further in this new edition of award-winning author Robert Lawson's classic tale, with additional bonus material, including a map of Ben Franklin's travels! Recommended for ages 8-11.

    Ben and the Big Balloon (Sue Graves) - One Amazon reviewer said this: “My preschool age son is learning to read and absolutely LOVES this book because he can read it himself. The words he doesn't know yet are repeated so it makes learning them natural. The story isn't amazing, but the pictures are cute and the enjoyment of reading for my son is what it's all about!” Recommended for ages 3-6.

    Ben's Book (Nanette Newman) - As amusing as it is instructive, this picture book teaches children about the joys of reading and sharing stories. When Ben receives a book for his birthday, he's not sure what to do with it. Perhaps it would make a good tunnel for his cars, or an exciting new hat? But none of the uses he comes up with seem quite right—until he shows it to his older sister Lulu, who knows exactly what a book is for! A story to encourage young readers, enlivened by bright, friendly artwork. Recommended for ages 3-6.

    Big Ben (Sarah Ellis) - Who says little brothers can’t do anything? Poor Ben. He’s the little one - the youngest and smallest. His sister Robin is a big kid in grade five; his brother Joe is a big kid in grade two. Ben’s just a little kid in preschool. He can’t swim, he can’t use chopsticks, he can’t even see out the car window. And worst of all, today is report card day. More than anything, Ben wants to bring home a report like Robin’s and Joe’s. But there are no report cards in preschool. Guess what? Ben is about to discover that sometimes there are report cards - at home, written by older siblings! He’s about to get his very own report, grading him on all the activities that little brothers do best. Beloved children’s author Sarah Ellis has followed up her acclaimed picture book debut, Next Stop! (2000) with this irresistible tale of siblings who, every once in a while, remember what it was like to be the little one. Kim La Fave’s always-empathetic characters inhabit a child’s world with just the right touch of humor and joy. A perfect book for preschoolers, younger siblings and beginner readers. Recommended for ages 3-6.

    Brave Ben (Mathilde Stein) - Ben is scared of everything: of the girl who cuts in front of him at the bakery, of people in the street who laugh at his favorite pair of flowered overalls, and especially of the spook underneath his bed. In his search for help with his problem, Ben finds that hi is braver than he thought. Recommended ages 7-10.

    Gentle Ben (Walt Morey) - The Alaskan wilderness is a lonely place for Mark Andersen, especially after the death of his brother. But Mark finds a friend named Ben, who happens to be an Alaskan brown bear. Ben and Mark form a special bond, but the townspeople are determined to destroy it. It is only through the strength of an enduring friendship that Ben—and Mark—have a chance of being saved. Recommended for ages 8-11.

  • Famous People Named Ben

    Famous People Named Ben

    Famous People Who Go by the Name Ben - Ben Affleck (actor/director); Ben Bernanke (Federal Reserve Chairman); Ben Crenshaw (golfer); Ben Franklin (important American); Ben Gibbard (musician); Ben Harper (musician); Ben Hogan (golfer); Ben Kingsley (actor); Ben Rothlisberger (football player); Ben Stiller (actor); Ben Vereen (actor)

  • Children of Famous People Named Ben

    Children of Famous People Named Ben

    Famous People Who Named Their Son Ben - We cannot find any celebrities or famous people who have named their child Ben.

  • Historic Figures

    Ben - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures

    Benjamin Franklin (17 Jan 1706 - 17 Apr 1790) - One of the most celebrated American figures of all time, Ben Franklin was a jack of all trades. He represented the essence of what it means to be an American. A printer. A publisher. A scientist. An inventor. A postmaster. A legislator. A diplomat. A social activist. A Founding Father. Even with only a 5th grade education, Ben Franklin pulled himself up by the bootstraps and became a celebrated, intelligent, wealthy and important figure even during his own time. The man embodies the American ideals. He led both an ambitious life and a virtuous one. Benjamin Franklin was also one of the earliest abolitionists and a protector of Native American rights. His life alone is one of the most profound statements on what all Americans strive to be.

Personality of the Boy Name Ben

The Three energy is powerful and enthusiastic. These personalities are cheerful, full of self-expression, and often quite emotional. They have an artistic flair and "gift-of-gab" that makes them natural entertainers. Their joyfulness bubbles over, and their infectious exuberance draws a crowd. The Three personality is like a child - forever young and full of delight. They are charming, witty, and generally happy people. The Three personality lives in the "now" and has a spontaneous nature. Threes seem to live with a bright and seemingly unbreakable aura that attracts others to them. In turn, they are deeply loyal and loving to their friends and family. Luck also has a tendency to favor number Threes.

Variations of the Baby Name - Ben

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