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Gender: Female Meaning of Mara: "bitter" Origin of Mara: Hebrew Mara's Popularity in 2017: #670

The name Mara is a girl's name of Hebrew, Czech origin meaning "bitter". Mara is ranked #670 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:

Mara is the evocative ancient root of Mary, appearing in the Book of Ruth, in which Naomi, devastated after the birth of her two sons, says "Call me not Naomi, call me Mara." It's one of the girl names starting with M that both fits in and stands out.

Mara is a multicultural name, also a Kiswahili word meaning "a time," and could be conceived as a geographical name, being a river flowing through Kenya and Tanzania.

As a child actress, Mara Wilson played leading roles in Matilda and Mrs. Doubtfire.

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

Famous People Named Mara

Mara Elizabeth Wilson, American actress
Mara Schiavocampo, American news correspondent
Mara Hoffman, American fashion designer
Mara Branković, daughter of Serbian monarch Đurađ (George) Branković, member of the harem of Sultan Murad II of the Ottoman Empire
Mara Liasson, American journalist
La Mara, pen name of German writer Marie Lipsius
Kate Mara, American actress
(Patricia) Rooney Mara, American actress

Pop Culture References for the name Mara

Mara aka Marzanna, Slavic goddess of winter, death, and harvest
Mara Jade Skywalker, character in the "Star Wars Extended Universe" series
Mara, a goddess of love and compassion from "The Elder Scrolls" videogames
"Mara: Daughter of the Nile," novel by Eloise McGraw
Mara Jaffray, a character on TV's "House of Anubis"
Mara, antagonist of "The Clockwork Forest," by Doug Macleod
Mara Aramov, character in the "Syphon Filter" video game series
Mara Wade, character in 1965 movie "Mara of the Wilderness"
Mara Amrita Dyer, title character in Michelle Hodkin's novel series
Mara, one of seven Gods in David Eddings' series "The Belgariad"
Mara Carlyle, main character in novel "Spontaneous" by Aaron Starmer
A mara is an animal.
Mara, a tempter figure in Buddhism

Marae, Mahra, Mar, Maralina, Marra, Maraline, Marah


TechnoKitten Says:


Idk what's with me but I really hate -ara ending names.

bordercollie Says:


Mara's a very interesting name to me. It's warm, soft, and gentle, but also mysterious, evocative, and a little bit dark. A beautiful name.

welshm4 Says:


Happens to be my fav :)
~Mara Welsh

paudachar Says:


I know someone called Mara, she is very bitter and mean

Heart_in_SD Says:


Mar means "Sea" in Spanish, so if you're bothered by the "bitter" translation you could make it a nod to Spanish rather than Hebrew.

capri22 Says:


beautiful, simple and sophisticated

aedunn2 Says:


The description should state that Naomi was devastated after the DEATH of her two sons.

sistergoldenhair Says:


Mara is also very dark slavic goddess - of death and rebirth

LcLauver Says:


You could spell it Marah (still hebrew) or Maura (I think gaelic or irish version of the name) That way you'd still get the lovely sound of the name but not necessarily any unwanted translations

Hydra Says:


A really pretty sound, but I can't help to think about the fact one of it's Japanese translations is penis.....truly a shame, as it's beautiful.

claradede11 Says:


Love this name, it's so beautiful!