Nathan Origin and Meaning

The name Nathan is a boy's name of Hebrew origin meaning "given".

Nathan is an Old Testament name that's ranked among the Top 100 names for boys for 50 years, and could well stay there for another 50. Strong, solid, and attractive, It's a name familiar to every schoolchild through Nathan Hale, the Revolutionary War spy.

Nathan was derived from the name Natan, which came from Hebrew verb natan, meaning "gave." In the Old Testament, Nathan was the name of a prophet and also that of one of King David's sons. Nathaniel and Jonathan are related names.

Along with the US, Nathan ranks in the Top 100 throughout the English-speaking world as well as in France, Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, and the Netherlands.

Nat and Nate (as featured on TV shows like Six Feet Under and Gossip Girl) are just the kind of friendly, old-fashioned nicknames that are now very much in style.

Nathans have starred in some classic films — it was the name of the character played by Kevin Kline in Sophie's Choice, by Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men, and Frank Sinatra was Nathan Detroit in the film version of Guys and Dolls. Nathan Zuckerman is the protagonist of several novels by Philip Roth.

In the public eye right now is Nathan Fillion, who portrays TV's Castle. Nathan was chosen for his son by Jon Stewart.

# 59 in the US

Nathan Rank in US Top 1000

# 154 on Nameberry

Nathan Rank in Nameberry Top 1000

Nathan Popularity

Famous People Named Nathan

  • NathanBiblical prophet
  • Nathan of Zobahfather of one of David's mighty men (2 Samuel 23:36)
  • Nathanbrother of Joel, a valiant man in David's armies (1 Chr. 11:38)
  • NathanBiblical son of David and Bathsheba
  • Nathanmentioned in Ezra 8:16
  • Nathan HaleAmerican revolutionary
  • Nathan Karl KressAmerican actor
  • Joseph "Nathan" LaneAmerican actor
  • Nathan PageAustralian actor
  • Nathan James SykesEnglish singer of band The Wanted
  • Nathan Gharjun Adrian, American Olympic swimmer
  • Nathan Russell HortonCanadian NHL Hockey player
  • Nathan Christopher FillionCanadian actor
  • (Ivan) Nathan FollowillAmerican musician of band Kings of Leon
  • Nathan William HindmarshAustralian Rugby League Player
  • Nathan Charles BuckleyAustralian rules footballer
  • Nathan DarmodyAmerican musician of band Allstar Weekend
  • Nathan Abraham Lauren FaganGayle aka Starboy Nathan, English R&B singer
  • Nathan Jonas "Joey" JordisonAmerican drummer of band Slipknot
  • Lars Olof Jonathan "Nathan" SöderblomSwedish bishop; winner of the Nobel Peace Prize
  • Nathan Lithgowson of American actor John Lithgow
  • Nathan HawesAustralian pop singer
  • Nathan Cole SomAmerican child model
  • Nathan FurstAmerican composer; son of actor Stephen Furst
  • Nathan Mandrellson of singer Barbara Mandrell
  • Nathan Howsmon Davisson of singer Jonathan Davis
  • Kenneth Nathaniel "Nathan" Bates5th child (3rd son) of reality TV's "Bringing Up Bates" family
  • Nathan ChenAmerican Olympic figure skater
  • Nathan Andersonson of actor/comedian Anthony Anderson
  • Nathan Garson (adopted 2009)son of actor Willie Garson
  • Nathan Fieldsson of model/TV personality Janice Dickinson and Simon Fields
  • Nathan Carrollson of NFL coach Pete Carroll
  • Nathan Powell Holroyd (b. 2011)son of actors Scott Holroyd and Allison Munn
  • Nathan Sileshi (b. 2015)son of runners Tirunesh Dibaba and Sileshi Sihine
  • Nathan Zed
  • Nathan FielderCanadian writer and comedian
  • Nathan "Nate" FueresteinAmerican rapper
  • Nathan AkeDutch professional footballer
  • Nathan Joel FoleyAustralian singer and children's presenter
  • Nathan George HarrisonBritish adult entertainer

Nathan in Pop Culture

  • Nathanmain character in short story "Earth Inherited" by author Justine Avery
  • Nathan Detroitmain character in musical "Guys & Dolls"
  • Nathan Zuckermancharacter in novels by Philip Roth
  • Nathanunseen conqueror in webcomic "The Silver Eye" by Laura Hollingsworth
  • Nathan Fordcharacter on TV's "Leverage"
  • Nathan Byrncharacter in Sally Green's "Half Life Trilogy"
  • Nathan Royal Scottmain character on TV's "One Tree Hill"
  • Nathan Petrellicharacter on TV's "Heroes"
  • Nathan McHughcharacter on TV's "Flight 29 Down"
  • Nathan Rhodescharacter in movie "Bridesmaids"
  • Nathan Goldfrappecharacter in movie "The Invention of Lying"
  • Nathan Claycharacter on TV's "Alphas"
  • Nathan Drakemain character in the Uncharted video game series
  • Nathan Wournoscharacter on TV's "Haven"
  • Nathan Dawkinscharacter in video game "Beyond: Two Souls"
  • Prince NathanVal's son in comic strip Prince Valiant
  • "Nathan the Wise" 1779 play by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing
  • Nathan Algrenmain character in film "The Last Samurai"
  • Captain Nathan Bridgercharacter on TV's "Seaquest DSV"
  • Nathan Copelandcharacter in video game No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle"
  • Nathan Explosioncharacter in animated series "Metalocalypse"
  • Nathan Granthamcharacter in movie "Creepshow"
  • Nathan Gravesmain character in video game series "Castlevania: Circle of the Moon"
  • Nathan Halemain character in video game "Resistance"
  • Nathan Hortonminor character on American soap "Days of Our Lives"
  • Nathan Landaucharacter in "Sophie's Choice" by William Styron
  • "Nathan Never" Italian comic book series
  • Nathan Simscharacter in Australian mockumentary "We Can Be Heroes"
  • Nathan Starkcharacter on TV's "Eureka"
  • Nathan Summerscharacter in X,Men comics
  • Nathan Youngcharacter on TV show "Misfits"
  • "Nathan for You" show on Comedy Central
  • Nathan Riggscharacter on TV's "Grey's Anatomy"
  • Nathan “Nate” Cosaycharacter in the animated series “Infinity Train”