Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Efrain

Efraín is the Spanish form of the Hebrew masculine name Ephraim (אֶפְרָיִם) from “’Efrayim”meaning “fruitful”. Ephraim is a biblical name appearing in Genesis as the second son of Joseph with his Egyptian wife Asenath. Genesis 41:52says: “The name of the second (son) [Joseph] called Ephraim, ‘For God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.’” This land of affliction was, of course, Egypt where Joseph has been sold into slavery by his jealous brothers (jealous because their father Jacob favored Joseph the most). In Egypt Joseph was at first a slave and then a prisoner but soon afterwards was called upon by Pharaoh to interpret a couple dreams. After giving Pharaoh some sound advice (i.e., stockpile the grain!) by foretelling the impending seven year famine, Joseph rose to great power and prominence in Egypt. Pharaoh also gave Joseph the daughter of an Egyptian priest for a wife, Asenath, and she bore Joseph two sons in Egypt, Manasseh and Ephraim. Manasseh means “causing to forget” because God helped Joseph forget his hardship and Ephraim means “fruitful” because God made Joseph fruitful while in Egypt. Later in Genesis Joseph is reunited and reconciled with his brothers and Jacob is informed that his favorite son Joseph is alive. After Jacob comes to Egypt to see his beloved Joseph there’s a long passage in Genesis describing Jacob’s duel-blessing on his grandsons Manasseh and Ephraim. As first born, Manasseh should have been given the greater blessing with the right hand vs. the left hand but Jacob switched them because he preferred Ephraim (for whatever reason, we’re not told exactly). So the younger born got the greatest blessing – and later in Israel’s history we do indeed learn that Ephraim’s descendents proved him out to be the greater of the two tribes. For instance, Joshua is descended from the tribe of Ephraim. Joshua succeeded Moses as leader of the Israelites whom he finally returned to the Promised Land. Ephraim has always been considered a Jewish name, but the Puritans adopted it during the Reformation (as they did with so many other Hebrew names) and brought it to the New World in the 17th century. It’s unclear when the Spanish embraced their form of Efraín but we’re guessing they adopted it from their close neighbors in America.

All About the Baby Name – Efrain

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME EFRAIN

The number Eight personality has everything to do with power, wealth and abundance. Somehow, this personality has been blessed on the material plane, but their authoritative and problem-solving traits provide evidence that their good fortunes are not just the luck of the lottery. They are well earned. This is the personality of CEOs and high-ranking military personnel. Eights are intensely active, hard-driving individuals. Success is only meaningful to them after a job well-done.  They are remarkable in their ability to see the larger picture right down to the smallest details, and organize a strategy around success. They then have the ability to direct a group around them toward any goal, and realize individual potential to get the most out of their team.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME EFRAIN

Efraín is name used exclusively among Hispanic-Americans in the United States, but even within this population group it’s relatively rare. The name first appeared on the naming charts in 1950 and it rose in usage as the decades progressed. The modest rise in popularity seen by Efraín is mainly due to the ever-rising Hispanic-American population. Although even among Spanish speakers in the United States, Efraín is not exactly a top favorite. Since the turn of the 21st century the name has dropped even more significantly and doesn’t appear to be on anyone’s radar anymore. That makes Efraín quite a unique choice by today’s naming standards. Same with Ephraim for that matter.

Quick Facts

ON EFRAIN

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

Spanish

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

3

RANKING POPULARITY:

925

PRONUNCIATION:

eh-fra-EEN

SIMPLE MEANING:

Fruitful

Characteristics

OF EFRAIN

Authoritative

Powerful

Tough

Tenacious

Wealthy

Problem-solver

Achiever

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Efrain

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME EFRAIN

Popular Songs

ON EFRAIN

We cannot find any popular or well-known songs with the name of Efrain


Famous People

NAMED EFRAIN

We cannot find any famous people with the first name Efrain.

Children of Famous People

NAMED EFRAIN

We cannot find any children of famous people with the first name Efrain

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME EFRAIN

We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Efrain