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Gender: Female Meaning of Rachel: "ewe" Origin of Rachel: Hebrew Rachel's Popularity in 2017: #195

The name Rachel is a girl's name of Hebrew origin meaning "ewe". Rachel is ranked #195 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Bible Names for Girls and discussed in our forums with posts like "Pick 5 (GIRLS)".

From the experts:

Delicacy, softness, and Old Testament importance made Rachel a top biblical choice from the seventies on. At a much earlier time Rachel was considered characteristically Jewish—it wasn't used as a Christian name until after the Reformation—but the fact that it has reached as high as the Top 10 in this country demonstrates that it has been fully embraced by all ethnic groups. While off its peak, Rachel is still one of the most popular girls' names starting with R as well as one of the most classic names for girls.

In the Bible, Rachel was the beautiful and cherished wife of Jacob, and mother of Joseph and Benjamin. It was a US First Lady name, via the wife of Andrew Jackson, and current prominent bearers include Rachels Weisz, Dratch, McAdams, Griffiths, Maddow, Roy, and Zoe. A major influence on the name was Jennifer Aniston's iconic character on Friends; other fictional Rachels were found in the Anne of Green Gables and Percy Jackson series, and on Glee.

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

Famous People Named Rachel

Rachel, Biblical second wife of Jacob
Rachel Donelson Robards Jackson, wife of U.S. President Andrew Jackson
Rachel Leah Bloom, American actress and comedienne
Rachel Sarah Bilson, American actress
Rachel Hannah Weisz, English actress
Rachel Susan Dratch, American comedian and actress
Rachel Held Evans, American author, blogger, and columnist
Rachel Louise Carson, American environmentalist and scientist
Rachel Marie Parsons, American ice dancer
Rachel Lauren Stevens, English pop singer of group S Club
Rachel Kelly Crow, American pop singer
Rachel Anne McAdams, Canadian actress
Rachel Anne Griffiths, Australian actress
Rachel Anne Maddow, American TV journalist
Rachel Emily Nichols, American actress
Rachel Michele Nichols, American TV journalist
(Rachel) Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, former American actress
Rachel Ticotin, American actress
Rachel Anna Korine, American actress
Rachel Khoo, English celebrity chef
Rachel McQuillan, Australian tennis player
Rachel Vincent, American novelist
Rachel India True, American actress
Rachel York, American actress and singer
Rachel Amanda Harris, Australian Olympic swimmer
Rachel Kushner, American novelist
Rachel Hunter, New Zealand model
Rachel Clare Hurd-Wood, English actress
Rachel Renee Smith, Miss USA 2007
Rachel Williams, American model
Rachel Claire Ward, English actress
Rachel Lindsey Potter, American actress/singer
Rachel Platten, American singer-songwriter
Rachel Isadora, American children's author
Rachel Irene Roy, American fashion designer
Rachel Uchitel, mistress of golfer Tiger Woods
Rachel Mary Berkeley Portman, English composer
Rachel Gibson, American novelist
Rachel Feinstein, American actress/comedian
Rachel Reynolds, American TV model
Rachel Hunt, Australian author
Rachel Elizabeth Boston, American actress
Rachel Zoe (Rosenzweig), American fashion stylist and designer
Rachel Ashwell, English author
Rachel Skarsten, Canadian actress
Rachel Shelley, English actress
Rachel Riley, English television presenter
Rachel Sutherland, sister of Canadian actor Kiefer Sutherland
Evan Rachel Wood, American actress
Rachel Louise Corsie, Scottish football player
Rachel House, New Zealand actress and acting coach
Rachel "Bunny" Meyer, American YouTuber of grav3yardgirl
Rachel Yoshizuki, American YouTuber of "Rachel and Jun"

Pop Culture References for the name Rachel

Rachel Karen Green, character on TV's "Friends"
Rachel Watson, main character in book/film "The Girl on the Train"
Rachel Zane, character on TV's "Suits"
Rachel Berry, main character TV's "Glee"
Rachel Dawes, character in the Batman series
Rachel Phantomhive, character in anime/manga "Kuroshitsuji/Black Butler"
Rachel Kinski, character on Australian soap "Neighbours"
Rachel Virginia Gatina, character on TV's "One Tree Hill"
Rachel Lynde, character in the Anne of Green Gables series
Rachel Elizabeth Dare, character in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians and Heroes of Olympus series
Rachel Witchburn, character in "Sydney White"
Rachel Anne Summers aka Marvel Girl, Marvel Comics character
Rachel, character in "Rainbow Magic" children's book series
Rachel Adams, character in "Defiance", from C. J. Redwine
Lady Rachel Rougedragon, "a meagre old Scotch lady" in Sir Walter Scott's 1824 novel "Redgauntlet"
Rachel Tice, character in the YouTube series "Most Popular Girls in School"
Rachel Pirzad, character on TV's "Alphas"
Rachel Sangalletti Ashley, main character in "My Cousin Rachel" by Daphne du Maurier and 1952 movie
Rachel Noyes, main character "The Rachel Papers" by Martin Amis and 1989 movie
Rachel Cameron, main character in 1968 movie "Rachel, Rachel"
Rachel Joy Cuddy, a character on "House, M.D."
Rachel Roth, alias to DC Comic superhero Raven from the "Teen Titans"
Rachel Keller, character from horror movie "The Ring"
Rachel Duncan, character on TV's "Orphan Black"
Rachel Denman, character in the "St Clare" book series by Enid Blyton
Rachel T. McKenzie aka Numbuh 362, a character on animated series "Codename: Kids Next Door"
Rachel Diaz, character on TV's "Stuck in the Middle"
Rachel Murray, a character on MTV's "Scream"
Rachel, a main character from the film "Imagine Me and You"
Rachel Pidgley, a character from webcomic "The Glass Scientists"
Rachel Davis, character on TV's "Famous in Love"
Rachel Alvi, character in "Sims" series
"Rachel Getting Married," 2008 movie
Rachel Goldberg, character on TV's UnREAL
Rachel, a Reuben sandwich with turkey
Rachel Ferrier, character in 2005 film "War of the Worlds"

Rachel's International Variations

Rachele (Italian) Rechell, Rashka, Rashke (Israeli) Rakhila, Rahil, Rashel, Rakhil (Russian) Raghnailt, Ráichéal (Irish Gaelic) Rahela (Hawaiian) Rahel (Hebrew) Rakel (Swedish) Ruchel (Yiddish) Rachelle (French) Rachela (Polish) Raquel (Spanish)


josephinedagnall Says:


I realised I liked this name when I was 8 years old, but I didn't start to love it until I watched Friends as a teen. It's now one of my all-time favourite names!

eve Says:


not in 2018 please

meekshouse Says:


This is my name. The only complaint I would have is that growing up in the 90's there were a ton of Rachel's but now that its popularity has tapered off, I highly recommend. My husband and family call me Rae.

Carolinekalmes Says:


Despite growing up with a ton, I still think this is a pretty name. My sister had a beautiful friend named Rachel when I was really little and that's still the impression I get with this name.

Daiseymae Says:


I have always really liked this name. I love the sound of it, and it is a family name too.

briarblossom Says:


I think Rachel works for pretty much any culture or era and for any age . Timeless.

danirose01 Says:


I grew up in a sea of Rachels. There were always more than 5 of them no matter where I went. Never met one who went by Rae either, they were always something unflattering like Rach or Rachie. Not a fan at all, I don't see the attraction.

paulapuddephatt Says:


Lovely, classic name

Fluffykitten101 Says:


Unpopular opinion: I don't like the name Rachel at all. It sounds incredibly 80's and I can't picture it on someone younger than 40. The -ach sound is also rather harsh sounding.

TheNymphGarden Says:


Rachel is a name that is thought by many to be dated, but I find it so timeless, beautiful, and delicate. One of the rare names that can be used over and over and it still retains that soft, sweet sound.

r13martin Says:


To me Rachel is the most universal name of all, you can look at any girl and say they "look like" a Rachel.

foreverharriet Says:


I think this is one of those rare names that won't ever go out of style.

TheSlothPrincess Says:


Rachel is a very beautiful name. I see it as being traditional, not dated or trendy. It is a fairly common, but not mega-popular name in my region. I would consider naming my own daughter this.

cricketbell Says:


That's my middle name and I love it so much.

headintheclouds Says:


The ultimate friendly girl-next-door 90's name. I don't really find Rachel dated though, the same way I'd find Jessica or Jennifer, since I know plenty of people who have little Rachels under the age of ten. I think it's more of a modern-classic biblical girl's name, one that to me, sounds gentle, sweet, and brimming with intelligence and creativity.

yvonne_virginia Says:


I love this name! At first I thought that the meaning was 'eww' which outraged me momentarily. Glad it isn't!

Momof2Davisgirls Says:


I luv the name Rachel. I also like the nickname Rae.

gabbygrace1915 Says:


What does this even mean? How can a name be ugly for one race but pretty for another? It's just a name, it doesn't change with race

indiefendi2 Says:


That is the worst comment you could ever make.

CupcakeGirl13 Says:


So beautiful, I know it is such in old name, but it sounds sorta modern to me. Is that weird?

Lucia Says:


My friends name is Rachel, a nice name!

ladybug99 Says:


Rachel is a name that can easily transfer from childhood to adulthood and still be just as cute! Benefit of the nickname Rae, which is also super cute and popular style right now!

MissMarshall Says:


I will say...being born in 1990 with this name, I was always in a class or on a team FULL of Rachels. I never hear it on little girls now, though. A lot of people call me Rach for short.

csd267 Says:


I have an odd attraction to "out-dated" names that to me, don't sound dated at all. Rachel is one of them. I think it sounds refreshing and sweet.

Leah3456 Says:


This name is so pretty and soft-sounding. It has an 80s/90s vibe to it.

Netta5187 Says:


Yes, it's 80's and it doesn't matter if it's biblical or not. Not everyone is Christian! It has a soft sound however and it's a classic, although an overused one.

lesliemarion Says:


80's? Dated? It's Biblical for heaven's sake!

MissusAytch Says:


Dated, but in a weirdly attractive way. This seems like the name of a beautiful girl.

Eva Thyssen Says:


I don't like this name, sorry.

Rush1986 Says:


this is so 80's to me.

sophiesilly Says:


This would make a really nice middle name.