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Israel is a Biblical given name.The patriarch Jacob was given the name Israel (Hebrew: יִשְׂרָאֵל, Standard  Tiberian  ; "Struggled with God") after he wrestled with the angel ( )The name already occurs in Eblaite and Ugaritic texts as a common name. Commentators differ on the original literal meaning. Some say the name comes from the verb śarar ("to rule, be strong, have authority over"), thereby making the name mean "God rules" or "God judges". Other possible meanings include "the prince of God" (from the King James Version) or "El fights/struggles".Jacob's descendants came to be known as the Israelites, eventually forming the tribes of Israel and ultimately the kingdom of Israel, from whence the name of modern day Israelmarker.

In Israel the name "Israel Israeli" is sometimes used to mean someone whose name is unknown or unspecified.

List of people named Israel

As a surname:


  1. Michael G. Hasel, Domination and Resistance: Egyptian Military Activity in the Southern Levant, Brill, 1998

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