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Alternative forms[edit]


From Hebrew אַחְאָב ‎(Ach'av, father’s brother); from אַח ‎(ach, brother) + אָב ‎(av, father).

Proper noun[edit]


  1. A king of Israel, mentioned in the Bible.
  2. A male given name, very rarely used.


  • 1851 Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, Chapter 16:
    Oh! he ain’t Captain Bildad; no, and he ain’t Captain Peleg; he’s Ahab, boy; and Ahab of old, thou knowest, was a crowned king!"
    "And a very vile one. When that wicked king was slain, the dogs, did they not lick his blood?"
    "Come hither to me—hither, hither," said Peleg, with a significance in his eye that almost startled me. "Look ye, lad; never say that on board the Pequod. Never say it anywhere. Captain Ahab did not name himself .'Twas a foolish, ignorant whim of his crazy, widowed mother, who died when he was only a twelvemonth old. And yet the old squaw Tistig, at Gayhead, said that the name would somehow prove prophetic.