How do Muslims choose a child’s name?

There are two traditions about the time a child is named.

There are hadiths where it is said that a child should be given a name on the day he was born. According to the testimony of Anas (may Allah be pleased with him), who told us that the Messenger of Allah (sas) said:

“I had a boy born tonight, and I called him Ibrahim.”

However, the statements of the Prophet (sas) also reached us, where he advises giving the child a name on the seventh day after his birth:

“Each child – in anticipation of his Akika, who was sacrificed on the seventh day, then he gets his name, and he shaves his head.”

From this, we can conclude that the baby can be given a name, the same day that he was born, and postponed until the seventh day (after his birth). However, the best day when they give a name, however, remains the seventh day. , since the Prophet (sas) advised us to do this on this day (this is said in the second hadith). As for the first, it still does not contain instruction, but permission. In it, the Prophet (sas) shows us that it is allowed, but does not recommend doing so.

Who gives the child a name?

The child is given the name of mother and father. If the mother and father do not agree on the name for the child, in this case, the father has the right to give the name to the child. If he (the father) wants to transfer this right to the mother, then there is nothing reprehensible.

“On the Day of Judgment, you will be called according to your names and the names of your fathers. Therefore, take good names for yourself.”

(Narrated by Ahmad, Abu Daoud)

Parents are also allowed to transfer the right to give the name of the child to someone else. It can be a grandfather, grandmother, or some other person. It’s just enough to say: “Call him (her) such and such, or:” His name will be such and such. “The Prophet (sas) gave names to some of the children of his associates, as described above.

Naming a child died immediately after birth or born dead

It happens that a newborn dies before he is given a name. In this case, the child should be given a name, just like other children, this is done so that in prayers (during the funeral), the name of a particular person (deceased) is given. The baby was born as a result of premature birth, at a gestational age of at least six months (6 months is considered the term when the baby can survive), the Shafiites and Hanbalits recommend that in this case, give the baby a name if it is impossible or difficult to determine the gender in the newborn, this case Tea should be given a name suitable for both girls and boys. Such names include Talha, Raja, Hind, Tarafa. They motivate this by saying that on Resurrection Day, everyone will be called in their own name.

Decent names

All names are divided into four categories:

FIRST: The child is called a name indicating belonging to the slaves of Allah. These are the names starting with ‘Abd (slave …), then it is added to Allah, or to one of the popular names of Allah.

“The names of Abdullah and Abdarrahman are most pleasing to Allah, the Most Gracious, Most Merciful.”

(Muslim, Abu Daud)

SECOND: The child is called by the name of one of the Prophets or the messengers of Allah (as).

The Prophet (sas) said: “You can give my name”


The Messenger of Allah called his own son by the name of the Prophet Ibrahim (as).

“That night, my son was born, and I called him by the name of my ancestor, Ibrahim.”

(Muslim, Abu Dawood)

THIRD: Names are belonging to worthy people, associates of the Messenger of Allah (sas), both men and women.

FOUR: good names that do not fall into any of the above categories

This category includes names whose meaning corresponds to the requirements of Sharia and indicates worthy qualities of the owner, for example, such as courage, honesty, cleanliness, etc. They should not resemble the names of infidels.

Unwanted Names

Unwanted names fall into two categories.


  1. Names are indicating that their owner is a slave or servant of someone other than Allah, for example, Abd-annabi (servant of the Prophet), Abd-arrasul (slave of the Messenger), Abd al-Muttalib and the like.
  2. You can not take any of the names of Allah.
  3. Names of infidels.
  4. The names of tyrants and despots, as well as enemies of Islam, for example, Firaun (Pharaoh), Abu Jahl, etc.


  1. Names that have an unfavorable meaning for their owners, such as Harb (war), Himar (donkey), Kalb (dog), and the like, since their value negatively affects the personality of the person wearing them.
  2. Indiscreet names such as Khayyam (passionate in love), Nuhad (girl with full breasts), Saham (summer heat), Gada (tender girl), Shadiya (songwriter), etc.
  3. Names are indicating pity or regret, for example, Barra and the like. The Messenger of Allah (sas) changed the name of one of his wives, whose name was Barra, to the name of Zaynab.
  4. Names of Angels, especially for women, as it imitates pagans practicing the appropriation of Angel’s names to women.
  5. Name the surahs from the Holy Quran, such as Ta Ha, Yasin, etc.
  6. Names such as Yasar (lightness), Rabba (profit), Nadzhih (lucky), Afla (prosperous), Yala, Barak (blessing) should not be given. The Prophet (sas) forbade naming children by such names:

Do not call your sons by the names Yasar, Slave, Nadzhih, Afl, because if someone asks “Is he here?”, The answer may be “No” … “(Muslim, Abu Daud, Tirmidi)

The prohibition of the other two names was reflected in another hadith.

Customs and rules for taking cunyas

  1. You can take a cunny before a person has a baby.
  2. A person who has children takes sesame by the name of the eldest of the children.

The Prophet (sas) answered this to the question about his sons, which one person asked him.

The man said: “I have three sons, Shuraya, Maslama, and Abdullah.” Allah’s Messenger (sas) asked: “Which of them is the eldest?” The man replied: “Shuraya” The Prophet (sas) answered him: “Then you will be Abu Shurai “.

(Bukhari, Muslim)

However, it’s okay if a person takes sesame by the name of the middle or youngest of the sons.

  1. For those who have children, you can also take kunya not necessarily associated with the names of children, as was the case with Abu Bakr, Abu Darr, Abu Suleiman, none of them had children with the names Bakr, Darr or Suleiman.
  2. For men, also for women, it is possible to take cues by the name of their daughters — for example, Abu Darda, Abu Zuhra, Umm Zuhra, Um Darda, etc.
  3. It is not necessary that the kunya necessarily contains a name; it can be quality or some other name (proper) or the like — for example, Abu al-Fadl, Abu Huraira, Abu Hafs, etc.

Kunya can actually be a name in itself and start with Abu … and Umm … but this is very rare.