Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Gideon

Gideon is a Hebrew name from the Bible and means ‘he who cuts down’. The Hebrew “Gid’on” is also said to mean ‘mighty warrior, destroyer’. Like most Biblical characters, Gideon’s name is apropos for his particular story in the Bible (Judges 6-8). Gideon is one of the Major Judges (like Deborah and Samson) in the Book of Judges – he lived during a period of Israeli history when the people were decentralized and neglecting their God. As punishment, God brings about an onslaught of foreign oppression and so the Israelites repent and beg to be saved. Enter the Judges. This was pre-monarchy, and the judges were more representative of a president rather than a king. It was the job of the judge to lead and command the military and government in times of crisis. Gideon is the Judge selected to deliver the Israelis from the oppressive power of the Midianites and at first, Gideon resists this appointment fearing himself too weak and wimpy. But with all of God’s signs, assurances, instructions and help, Gideon does as he is told. The first order of business has to do with Gideon destroying (or ‘cutting down’) an alter to Baal, a pagan storm god, which greatly upsets the residents of his hometown. Next, Gideon assembles 300 men who surround the enemy camp. All the men do is reveal their fire-torches and blow their trumpets on queue and the Midianites flee in fear. Gideon’s men never even have to show their swords. Quite the mighty victory, indeed. Gideon has been a name used among Jewish people, but the Puritans also adopted Gideon at the time of the 16th century Protestant Reformation.

All About the Baby Name – Gideon

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME GIDEON

The number Nine personality represents the completion or ending of the cycle, and a need for perfection. This is the personality that moves from "self" to a greater understanding and compassion for the human condition and the world order. They want to make the world a better place. Nines are capable of great spiritual and humanitarian achievements. They are courageous and fearless, able to fight great battles on behalf of worthy causes. These personalities will not tolerate injustice. They are compassionate people with a strong sensitivity to others. They are able to both educate and inspire. Friendships and relationships are the lifeblood to the Nine, and they place a high value on love and affection. Nines are often exceptionally gifted artistically, and they have a keen imagination and enterprising mind.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME GIDEON

Given the name’s importance among Puritans, we suspect that Gideon has been around in America since the time of colonization. However, the U.S. government has only been tracking name data since the late 19th century. We can see that Gideon was modestly popular in the late 1800s, but by the turn of the 20th century, this was a name that fell out of favor and retreated into obscurity. He remained off the charts for just about 100 long years. Finally in the 21st century Gideon reappeared on the American male naming charts in the year 2000. Why the sudden reappearance? We believe this has something to do with a naming trend that seems to be favoring some of these lesser-known Biblical characters. Ethan, Caleb, and Elijah are other examples of such Biblical names. Gideon has not ascended the charts as high as these other names, but he has managed to climb over 500 positions to levels of respectable moderation. Gideon remains a non-trendy, original choice. It’s a handsome name and probably still most popular among Jewish people and Christian nonconformists.

Quick Facts

ON GIDEON

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

Hebrew

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

3

RANKING POPULARITY:

370

PRONUNCIATION:

GID-ee-әn

SIMPLE MEANING:

He who cuts down

Characteristics

OF GIDEON

Multi-talented

Intuitive

Oneness

Idealistic

Philanthropy

Independent

Perfection

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Gideon

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME GIDEON

We cannot find any significant literary characters by the name of Gideon

Popular Songs

ON GIDEON

Gideon
a song by Trouble

Famous People

NAMED GIDEON

Gideon Gartner (entreprenuer/philanthropist)
Gideon Mantell (geologist)
Gideon Kliger (Israeli Olympic sailor)

Children of Famous People

NAMED GIDEON

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME GIDEON

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