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Gender: Female Meaning of Esther: "star" Origin of Esther: Persian Esther's Popularity in 2017: #165

The name Esther is a girl's name of Persian origin meaning "star". Esther is ranked #165 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Bible Names for Girls and discussed in our forums with posts like "Girls Makeover - Two Middles".

From the experts:

One of the major female figures in the Old Testament, quiet, studious Esther was in the Top 50 a hundred years ago, and stayed in the Top 100 until 1935. It is now on the ascent again, appealing to parents -- Ewan McGregor is one -- seeking an underused biblical name with a strong history and serious image.

In the Bible, Esther, originally named Hadassah, was the captured Jewish wife of the King of Persia who risked her life to save her exiled people from annihilation, a story celebrated by Jews on the holiday of Purim, so that it has traditionally been given to girls around that time.

Judy Garland played two memorable Esthers--in Meet Me in St. Louis and A Star is Born; Esther Summerson is a main character in Dickens' Bleak House and Esther Greenwood is the autobiographical character's name in Sylvia Plath's A Bell Jar. Someone who glamorized the name is champion swimmer-turned-movie-star Esther Williams.

Madonna adopted Esther as her Kaballah name.

Find other names based on Esther using our baby name generator.

Famous People Named Esther

Esther, Jewish Queen of Persia who saved her people; subject of the Biblical Book of Esther
Esther Jane Williams, American swimmer and actress
Esther Elizabeth Rolle, American actress
Esther Pauline "Eppie" Lederer aka Ann Landers, American advice columnist
Esther Armah, British playwright, radio host, and political commentator
Esther Freud, English novelist
Esther Hicks, American self-help author
Esther Marjorie Hill, Canadian architect
Esther Jones aka Baby Esther, American jazz singer; inspiration for Betty Boop
Esther 'Essie' Davis, Australian actress
Esther Grace Earl, American cancer activist; dedicatee of "The Fault in Our Stars"
Esther Edwards Burr, diarist and mother of U.S. Vice President Aaron Burr
Esther Lofgren, American rower
Esther de Lange, Dutch MEP
Esther Cardoso, Cuban actress
Esther Ouwehand, Dutch MP
Esther Eggertsen Peterson, American consumer advocate
Esther Ralston, American silent-film actress
Esther Louise Rantzen, English TV journalist
Esther Ofarim, Israeli pop singer
Esther Ople Rueher, American author
Esther Sittler, French senator
Esther Povitsky, American comedian of duo Esther & Benji
Esther Schmucker, daughter of TV personalities Chester and Mary Schmucker of "Breaking Amish"
Esther Rose McGregor (b. 2001), daughter of Ewan McGregor
Esther Malone (b. 2010), daughter of choirmaster and TV personality Gareth Malone
Esther Testud (b. 2011), daughter of actress Sylvie Testud
Esther Ballantine Hawkins (b. 2015), daughter of singer Sophie B. Hawkins

Pop Culture References for the name Esther

Esther, twelfth book in the Bible
Esther Drummond, character on TV's "Torchwood"
Esther Summerson, character in Charles Dickens' "Bleak "House"
Esther Smith, character in movie "Meet Me in St. Louis
Esther, AKA Leena Klammer, character in movie "Orphan"
Esther Mikaelson, witch on TV's "Vampire Diaries" & "The Originals"
Esther Blodgett, character in "A Star is Born" who becomes Vicki Lester
Esther Greenwood, main character in "The Bell Jar" by Sylvia Plath
Esther Clavin, Cliff's mother on TV's "Cheers"
Esther Bloom, character British soap "Hollyoaks"
Esther, character in "Star of Babylon" by Barbara Wood
Esther Litt Edelstein, character on "Suits"
Esther Walker; Addy's sister in the "American Girl" books
Esther, character in the "Lights Out" movies
Porpentina Esther "Tina" Goldstein, character in "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" by J.K. Rowling
Esther Walton, Grandma on TV show "The Waltons"

Hesther, Essa, Hettie, Essy, Etti, Esti, Etty, Essey, Esta, Hittie, Ettie, Estee, Ettey, Essie, Esthur, Hetty

Esther's International Variations

Estée (French) Estzer, Ester, Eszter, Eszti (Slavic) Eistir (Irish)


fromtheocean12 Says:


Esther is pretty different from what I usually like, but is the only "old-lady" name that I truly love. It's just so pretty <3

Tora Says:


Love the meaning and the biblical story behind it. Don't love the sound, but its growing on me.

Ella Says:


I can picture this on a boy.I knew a male Esther.

headintheclouds Says:


I've always been torn on my opinion of Esther. The spelling and sound of it honestly is unappealing to me, with the pairing of the -s sound and lisping -th in the middle. And if you pronounce it as Ester, it just makes me think of chemical compounds and Easter.

But I love the feel of the name and associations that come with Esther-- its meaning of star is beautiful, the biblical story of the Queen Esther is empowering and inspiring, and I've always thought this seemed like an impactful name, where the bearer would be highly accomplished in a regal serene sort of way (I get the same vibe with Irene). Ultimately, it's not for me, but I'd always love to see real life Esther name sightings!

paulapuddephatt Says:


Not a fan, even though Sylvia Plath used it for the protagonist in her, heavily autobiographical, novel

TheSlothPrincess Says:


A pretty, soft sounding name. I've never met an Esther, but the name makes me think of a kind, gentle soul. A lovely choice for a daughter.

shelbynh Says:


Love this! Sophisticated, strong name...and nickname 'Essie' is so cute!

EW314 Says:


Esther is gorrrrrrgeous! Such an understated, elegant, classy choice.

EW314 Says:


Love the idea of Etta for Esther!

ashleyrams Says:


I used to love the name Esther because it was one of my favorite books in the bible...then the movie Orphan came along and had to ruin the name for me.

Impwood Says:


I like this name with the diminutives Essie, Essa, Ettie and Etta.

esmith0326 Says:


I used to hate my name when I was younger, I always went by nicknames. But now I LOVE my name, especially because of Meet Me In St. Louis because Judy Garland's character and I have the same first and last names. (How cool is that ?!)

NaomiNY Says:


There's a character named Esther in one of my favorite anime.

Esther Rogers Says:


I pronounce my name Es-star, I think it was meant to be pronounce Es-T-er but I like the star in my name therefore I introduce myself Es-star

Essi Anna Eliisa Paasikivi Says:


Here in Finland name Essi is abbreviation of name Esther.

indiefendi2 Says:


Esther is quite underrated. I rarely hear it. I love it. When I think of Esther I think of a Supreme Court Justice.

eveyalecia Says:


I know how it's pronounced, but it still feels lispy when I say it. I think it's the "st" sound... anyway, that's just why I personally wouldn't use it, but it's still a beautiful name that I'd love to see someone else use!

ashbee Says:


It's pronounced ES-ter. The "h" is silent. It was my great-grandmother's name. I also think it's pretty and has a rich history.

auntanne1122 Says:


This is one of my favorite vintage, biblical and classic girl's names.

idkjustbrowsing Says:


Like Esst-err

Zoey_Artemisia Says:


Oh ok thanks.

Analia Says:


The way I've heard it pronounced is Es-ter, the "h" is silent

Zoey_Artemisia Says:


Hows it pronounced?

idkjustbrowsing Says:


I really like the name Esther, it's pretty and has style.

eveyalecia Says:


I think this name is so pretty, and I love the biblical story of Esther. But it feels so lispy when I say it aloud :(