Boy Baby Name


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Quick Facts on Tobias

  • Gender:
  • Boy
  • Origin:
  • Greek, Hebrew
  • Number of syllables:
  • 3
  • Ranking popularity:
  • 491
Simple meaning:
God is good

Characteristics of Tobias

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

Etymology & Historical Origin - Tobias

Tobias is the Greek form of the Hebrew Tobiah (Toviyyah) meaning “Yahweh is good”. Since the Middle Ages the name has mainly been associated with the Biblical tale “Tobias and the Angel” which appears in the apocrypha (Book of Tobit). In the story, Tobias is the son of Tobit, a rich and righteous Jew who goes blind after bird droppings fall into his eyes. The archangel Raphael (disguised as a man) accompanies Tobias on a journey to retrieve money for Tobit. With the aid of the angel, Tobias returns from his travels triumphantly – a rich man with a new wife on his arm after defeating an evil demon. He also brings Tobit an ointment (fish gall bladder) which, after rubbed into his eyes, miraculously cures his blindness and restores his eyesight. As a result of Tobias’ heroic deeds and the popularity of this story in medieval times, the name came into wider usage. It was also the name of an early 4th century Roman soldier who was martyred for his Christian beliefs (along with five other soldiers all of whom were burned at the stake). Tobias is another example of one of the lesser prominent Biblical names adopted and popularized by the Protestants after the Reformation. Today, Tobias is particularly popular within the Scandinavian countries of Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands. It is also currently the 2nd most popular boy’s name in Austria. In German, the name is pronounced to-BEE-ahs.

Popularity of the Name Tobias

Tobias is a name that has been used sparingly in America since colonial times, but by the early 20th century, the name would drop from favor for over 60 years until finally reemerging in the mid-1960s. The name actually received some of its heaviest usage in the 1970s. Tobias became less popular in the 80s and 90s, but as we’ve crossed the threshold into the 21st century, the name is once again seeing some of its best numbers. In any case, this is still a very moderately used name at best, so we would definitely not call it overused. A character named Tobias from the young adult sci-fi book series “Animorphs” (1996-2001) has helped popularize the name in more recent years, as well. The memorable Tobias Fünke was also an amusing character on the TV series "Arrested Development". It’s a bit baffling that Tobias is not more popular; the name has timeless, classic appeal. Neglected and underused, Tobias could be a choice to consider for parents who don’t like to follow the naming trends of the day. Toby and Tobes are potential nicknames that bring a more casual flavor to Tobias. Lastly, given the name's root meaning (God is good), we would also consider Tobias a great choice for the religious minded.
Popularity of the Boy Name Tobias
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Tobias

  • Literary Characters of the baby name Tobias

    Literary Characters of the Baby Name Tobias

    Inspector Tobias Gregson (Sherlock Holmes series) Inspector Tobias Gregson is a Scotland Yard inspector who figures in some of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes series: A Study in Scarlet (1887), The Adventure of the Greek Interpreter (1893), The Adventure of Wisteria Lodge (1908), and The Adventure of the Red Circle (1911). Holmes himself describes Tobias as “the smartest of the Scotland Yarders”, but his general opinion of Scotland Yard is so low that this is faint praise, indeed. We the readers, however, are more inclined to like Tobias, for he is tall, blonde, blue-eyed and quite engaging. He is constantly on the alert to out-perform his fellow detective, Inspector Lestrade, but he feels no animosity for Holmes; rather he admires the intelligence of the great man, and feels more comfortable when Holmes is on the case. This is a rather endearing trait, and we feel it is just a little churlish of Holmes not to return the compliment. It is Dr. Watson who applauds Tobias’ courage, as well as remarking that he is a pretty cool customer, with a quiet and businesslike air about him. We’re more inclined to accept Dr. Watson’s assessment of Tobias’ character, because, after all, we all know what Mr. Holmes was smokin’!

    Tobias (The Book of Tobit) A Jew named Tobit goes blind after some birds poop in his eyes (no, we’re not kidding) which causes him so much despair, he prays for death. At the same time, but in a separate faraway place, another woman named Sarah also prays for death. Her despair is caused by a lust demon who keeps killing her husbands on their wedding night before she can consummate her marriage (she has seven husbands, and the evil demon kills them all). Married seven times and still a virgin! God hears their separate prayers and sends Raphael, the angel of healing. Disguised as a man named Azarias, Raphael accompanies Tobias (Tobit’s son) on a journey to retrieve money for his father. Along the way, a giant fish jumps out of the water and nearly kills Tobias (no, we’re still not kidding), but with the aid of Raphael, the fish is killed and they remove the heart, liver and gall bladder for future medicinal needs. At the end of their travels, Tobias meets Sarah and they fall madly in love and marry. Not to be discouraged by the fate of her other seven husbands, Tobias (with instruction from Raphael) burns the fish heart and liver so the smoke drives the evil husband-killing demon away. Sarah and Tobias then return to Tobit and rub the fish gall bladder in his eyes which miraculously restores his eyesight. Everyone is happy and no one is praying for death anymore. God is good!

  • Popular Songs on Tobias

    Popular Songs on Tobias

    Tobias - We cannot find any popular or well-known songs featuring the name Tobias.

  • Children's Books on the Baby Name Tobias

    Children's Books on the Baby Name Tobias

    Animorphs Series: The Invasion (K.A. Applegate) - Book One of the wildly popular series by K.A. Applegate. The Earth is being invaded, but no one knows about it. When Jake, Rachel, Tobias, Cassie, and Marco stumble upon a downed alien spaceship and its dying pilot, they're given an incredible power -- they can transform into any animal they touch. With it, they become Animorphs, the unlikely champions in a secret war for the planet. And the enemies they're fighting could be anyone, even the people closest to them. So begins K.A. Applegate's epic series about five normal kids with a limitless amount of forms and abilities. Take one alien, five kids, and the ability to change into any animal they touch, and you¹ve got a fantastic, unpredictable, edge-of-your-seat series best described as “The X-Files for Kids.” Recommended for ages 8-14.

    Castle Diary: The Journal of Tobias Burgess (Richard Platt) - School Library Journal says: “Not many, if any, children’s books on the Middle Ages and castles contain the wealth of information found in this fresh, appealing offering." What was it really like to live in a castle? Step back to the Middle Ages with Castle Diary: The Journal of Tobias Burgess. Eleven-year-old Toby’s vivid diary entries offer an insider’s view of day-to-day castle life, including tips on etiquette (where do you spit at a feast?) and exciting descriptions of hunting, jousting, and harvesting. Complete with glossary, index, and detailed endnotes, this is a rich look at medieval life that informs as much as it entertains. Recommended for ages 9-13.

    Tobias and his Big Red Satchel (Sunny B Warner) - Tobias has a satchel filled with the “terribly usable” things he must have at hand every day as he rescues animals and people from their various predicaments. His mother is worried because it is so heavy, but, as events prove, “He can't do without any one of the things that he carries about.” Recommended for ages 4-8.

    Tobias, the Quig, and the Rumplenut Tree (Tim Robinson) - Standing alone in a yard, a rumplenut tree sadly ponders its solitude, wishing for a bird to carry its rumplenuts beyond its shade so that new rumplenut seedlings can grow. And just over yonder roosts a splendiferous quig with gleaming feathers, all alone in a house, confined by a cage. It is up to the hero of this tale, a lad named Tobias, to embark on a very important mission - to bring the quig and the rumplenut tree together so that they each can live long into the future. Recommended for ages 4-7.

  • Famous People Named Tobias

    Famous People Named Tobias

    Famous People Named Tobias - Tobias “Tobey” Maguire (actor); Tobias Wolff (author); Tobias Smollett (Scottish novelist); Tobias Harris (basketball player); Tobias Moretti (Austrian actor); Toby Keith Covel (country music singer); Tobias Michael Carel Asser (Nobel Peace Prize Winner)

  • Children of Famous People Named Tobias

    Children of Famous People Named Tobias

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

  • Historic Figures

    Tobias - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures

    Tobias - We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Tobias.

Personality of the Boy Name Tobias

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 - Tobias

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