What Does the Name James Mean?


The Origin of James

James comes from the Hebrew name Jacob, which is Ya’aqov. It means supplanter, or one who follows. The name grew in popularity in the 17th century when the Scottish King inherited the English throne, thereby becoming the first King of Britain.

While the number of children named James has declined since that time, that is mostly due to the rise in the diversity of names. James is still in the top 10 of baby names according to most charts.  

It is the name of two Biblical apostles from the New Testament. The first being James, the Greater, the brother of the apostle John. James was beheaded by Herod in the Book of Acts. The second was James the Lesser.

He was the son of Alphaeus, and also called James the lesser. James the Just is also the brother of Jesus, and is thought the be the author of the Epistle of James in the New Testament. 

James is one of the few names that you’ll find in the dictionary, which speaks to its popularity and importance over a long period of time.

It’s dictionary definition, is an apostle, the son of Zebedee, and brother to the apostle John according the the accounts of the Gospel.

The name has been popular in England since the 13th century, however it has been the name of several Scottish Kings, making it extremely popular there.

The name appears multiple times in Shakespearean plays.  King John James Journey, who is described as a servant to Lady Faulconbridge in the play King John.

In Richard III, there is a Sir James Tyrrell and a Sir James Blount. As Shakespeare’s plays have been popular for centuries any name mentioned in these players will receive a boost in popularity.

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Characteristics of  Someone Named James

People named James tend to be creative, and express themselves very well. They enjoy life, and are drawn to the arts. They have a strong desire for family, community, and stability.

They like the limelight, and tend to choose careers where they will be the center of attention. They are often involved in many activities, and can be reckless with money and where they put their energy.

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Famous People Named James

There have been six American Presidents named James. England has had two King’s named James, while Scotland has had six.

Captain James Cook
Was a British explorer, navigator, cartographer, and captain of the Royal Navy. He made detailed maps of Newfoundland before making three voyages to the Pacific Ocean.

He was the first European to make contact with the eastern coastline of Australia and the Hawaiian islands and the first recorded circumnavigation of the island of New Zealand.

James Patterson
Is in American author and philanthropist. Some of his most famous book series include Alex Cross, Michael Bennett, Women’s Murder Club, Maximum Ride, Daniel  X, NYPD read, Witch and Wizard, and Private.

In addition to this he has had many successful standalone novels. According to Forbes magazine he is at the top of the highest paid authors, a feat that he has accomplish for four years in a row. His total income over a decade is estimated to be over $700 million.

James Watt
Was a Scottish inventor, mechanical engineer, and chemist who improved upon Thomas Newcomen’s Newcomen steam engine. This improvement was fundamental to the industrial revolution in both great Britain and the rest of the world.

James Joyce
Is an Irish novelist, short story writer, and poet. He was a modern Avant Garde writer and is regarded as one of the most influential and important authors of the 20th century.

He is best known for Ulysses which parallels Homer’s Odyssey. He also wrote a short story collection entitled Dubliners and A Portrait of the Young Artist as a Man, and Finnegans Wake.

James Bond
Is a fictional character who is an agent with the British Secret Service. He was created in 1953 by writer Ian Fleming who wrote about him in 12 novels and short story collections.

Since Flemings death eight other authors have written authorized novels. The character has been featured in television, radio, comic strip, video games, and film.

James Bond movies are the longest continually running film series of all time, And have grossed over $7 billion which is the fourth highest grossing film series to date.

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