Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Hank

Most people know that Hank is short for Henry or Harry but it actually started out as a medieval diminutive of John. Hank essentially developed from Hankin where by “Han” was short for Johan (a German and Scandinavian form of John) and “-kin” was a Middle English diminutive suffix. So Hankin was basically a pet form meaning “little John”. It eventually got truncated to just “Hank” in England. Separately, the Dutch brought “Henk” to the New World colonies in the 17th century; Henk being a diminutive of Hendrick (Dutch equivalent of Henry). This is how Hank developed as a short-form for Henry in the United States. For the most part Hank has been widely used as a nickname but hasn’t seen much success as an independently given name.

All About the Baby Name – Hank

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME HANK

The number Seven personality is deeply mystical and highly in tune with their spirituality. They operate on a different wavelength than the average joe. Spending time alone comes easily to Sevens, as it gives them time to contemplate philosophical, religious and spiritual ideas in an effort to find "real truth".  Sevens are wise, but often exude mystery as if they are tapped into something the rest of us don't understand. They love the outdoors and are fed by nature. Sevens are constantly seeking to understand human nature, our place in the universe, and the mystery of life in general. This makes them quite artistic and poetic, but they are also keen observers with high intellect - so they are equally scientific-minded. Sevens are charitable and care deeply about the human condition.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME HANK

Hank first appeared on the American male naming charts in 1946, rose to levels of so-so moderation in the mid 1960s and then retreated into obscurity in the 80s and 90s. Hank took a hiatus for a while as he completely disappeared from the Top 1000 list for 20 years (1989-2009). This name only recently returned to the charts in 2010 and has jumped into position #692 in 2011. Obviously something influenced this sudden return to the charts for Hank, and it’s probably the popular series “Royal Pains” on the USA Network featuring a likable character named Dr. Hank Lawson. This Hamptons doctor gives Hank some much need white-collar (or should we say “white-coat”) pride to counter-balance the redneck-hillbilly association many people have with Hank (such as the character Hank Hill from “King of the Hill”). Country music lovers think of the three generations of Hank Williams who have been entertaining audiences for over 70 years. Still we think Hank is better left as a nickname rather than a legally given first name.

Quick Facts

ON HANK

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

English

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

1

RANKING POPULARITY:

626

PRONUNCIATION:

HANK

SIMPLE MEANING:

John or Henry

Characteristics

OF HANK

Mystical

Wise

Eccentric

Intuitive

Imaginative

Philosophical

Solitary

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Hank

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME HANK

Hank Rearden is the male protagonist of Ayn Rand’s 1957 novel of individualism and objectivism, Atlas Shrugged. Hank is an impossibly good, self-made man. He is innovative and risk-taking, strong and independent. He is the antithesis of the sorry creatures who expect to live off of the labor and earnings of the creators in society, a group who are subsidized by a proletarian government. Somehow, Hank is surrounded by such people, as represented by his wife, his mother and his younger brother. Only when he meets Dagny Taggart and, finally, John Galt, does he come to find the soul’s kinship that only such exalted beings may enjoy. In spite of all this, Hank truly is likeable. His devotion to the honest pride he finds in his labors, as well as his struggle to reconcile his obligations with his conscience, make him very appealing and somehow comfortable to us. He is one of us (whether or not Ms. Rand intended him to be).

Popular Songs

ON HANK

From Hank to Hendrix
a song by Neil Young

There's A Little Bit of Hank in Me
a song by Charley Pride

The Night Hank Williams Came to Town
a song by Johnny Cash

The Great Hank
a song by Robert Earl Keen

The Ghost of Hank Williams
a song by David Allen Coe

Talking to Hank
a song by Mark Chesnutt

Straw Hat and Old Dirty Hank
a song by Barenaked Ladies

Mission from Hank
a song by Aaron Tippin

Me & Hank & Jumpin' Jack Flash
a song by Stuart Marty

If You Don't Like Hank Williams (Kiss My Ass)
Kris Kristofferson

I Feel Like Hank Williams Tonight
a song by Jerry Jeff Walker

Here's To Hank
a song by Stonewall Jackson

Has Anybody Here Seen Hank
a song by The Waterboys

Hank Williams, You Wrote My Life
a song by Moe Bandy

Hank Williams' Guitar
a song by Freddie Hart

Hank Williams Said It Best
a song by Guy Clark

Hank Don't Fail Me Now
a song by Keith Urban

Hank And Joe and Me
a song by Johnny Cash

Ballad of Hank Williams
a song by Hank Williams, Jr.

Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way
a song by Waylon Jennings

Hank and Joe and Me
a song by Johnny Cash

Famous People

NAMED HANK

Henry "Hank" Aaron (baseball player)
Henry "Hank" Azaria (actor)
Henry "Hank" Baskett (baseball player)
Hank Blalock (baseball player)
Garland "Hank" Cochran (country music singer/songwriter)
Henry "Hank" Greenberg (baseball player)
Henry "Hank" Jones (jazz musician)
Clarence "Hank" Snow (country musician)
Henry "Hank" Stram (football coach)
Hiram "Hank" Williams, Sr. (country musician)
Randall “Hank” Williams, Jr. (country musician)
Shelton "Hank" Williams III (country musician)

Children of Famous People

NAMED HANK

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

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME HANK

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