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Gender: Feminine
: English, Hebrew
Sarai comes from a Hebrew name probably meaning “Contentious” (although the term “my princess” like the name Sarah “princess” has also been suggested).

The Biblical Sarai, wife of Abram, was renamed by God as Sarah (her husband became Abraham).

The Puritans, with their propensity for obscure Biblical names, probably revived the name Sarai, although it was far, far eclipsed by its replacement, Sarah.

Sarai has been revived again in recent years, probably as an alternative to the popular Sarah.

Pronunciation: say-rai.

Famous Bearers:
Religious Figures:
Wife of Abram in the Bible.

Percentage from the 1990 U.S. Census:
0.001 % of females Sarai

Popularity of Sarai
Popularity (for newborns):
In the United States...
1880-1986: N/A
1987: 961st most popular.
1988: N/A
1989: 974th most popular.
1990: 773rd most popular.
1991: 746th most popular.
1992: 759th most popular.
1993: 711th most popular.
1994: 680th most popular.
1995: 620th most popular.
1996: 577th most popular.
1997: 601st most popular.
1998: 608th most popular.
1999: 558th most popular.
2000: 558th most popular.
2001: 539th most popular.
2002: 505th most popular.
2003: 464th most popular.
2004: 471st most popular.

Selected Sources:
The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names, Withycombe, 1977, 3rd ed.
A Dictionary of First Names, Hanks and Hodges, 1990
The Penguin Dictionary of First Names, Pickering, 1999
The Social Security Administration Actuarial Note 139 ( - For popularity stats 1880-Present
The 1880 U.S. Census- For popularity stats 1850-1880, and other information (it is available on-line at

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