Israel comes from Hebrew Yisra’el meaning “God contends”, composed of Hebrew sarar (to contend, to fight) and el (God).  This was a name later given to Jacob, the son of Isaac and Rebekah and the twin brother of Esau, because he wrestled with an angel. It’s also the name of the modern state of Israel.

Israel is also a Jewish surname originating from the given name.

Origin: Proto-Semitic



  • Yisra’el (Biblical Hebrew)
  • Yisrael (Hebrew)
  • Israhel (Biblical Latin)
  • Yisroel (Yiddish)
  • Iser (Yiddish)
  • Issur (Yiddish)



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