- Meaning: Santiago means “Saint Jacob” as a tribute to Saint James the Great.
- Gender: Santiago has traditionally been used as a masculine name.
- Origin: Santiago is a Spanish name that initially comes from the Hebrew name Jacob in the bible.
- Pronunciation: “sahn-TEE-ah-goh”
- Popularity: Santiago is currently a very popular name, breaking into the top 100 most popular names in 2017. In 2021, the name remained in the top 100 at rank #63.
- Nicknames: Ago, Iago, San, Santi, Santo, Ti, Tigo, Yago.
- Variations: Dídac, Didacus, Diego, Iago, Santi, Thiago, Tiago.
- Namesakes: Santiago Bernabéu,Santiago Cabrera,Santiago de Murcia.
- What Does Santiago Mean?
- What Is the Origin of the Name Santiago?
- How Popular Is the Name Santiago?
- How Do I Pronounce Santiago?
- Is Santiago a Boy or Girl Name?
- Variations of Santiago
- Nicknames for Santiago
- Similar Names to Santiago
- Middle Names for Santiago
- Sibling Names for Santiago
- Famous People Named Santiago
- Santiago in Popular Culture
- Santiago FAQs
What Does Santiago Mean?
Santiago means “Saint Jacob” as a tribute to Saint James the Great, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus in the Christian and Jewish religions. The beginning of the name “Sant” means saint, and “Iago” is a Spanish variant of the name Jacob.
Jacob is a Hebrew boy’s name that, in Spanish-speaking countries, has become a modern version of the traditional name “James.” This is how Saint Iago, which technically means Saint Jacob, is used to represent Saint James from the bible (1).
Along with Santiago as Sant Iago for Saint Jacob, the names Sant Yago, Santo Iago, and Santo Yago all also translate to Saint Jacob or Saint James.
What Is the Origin of the Name Santiago?
Santiago is a Spanish male name that initially comes from the Hebrew name Jacob in the bible. The name was popularized as masculine to give tribute to either Saint James, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus, or Jacob from the Book of Genesis (2).
The patriarch Jacob is described in the Book of Genesis as the father and creator of the Twelve Tribes of Israel. The Twelve Tribes of Israel comprise the entirety of the Israelite nation in traditional stories, so Jacob is often considered the nation’s creator.
Saint James, often referred to as “James the Great,” was one of the twelve apostles in the bible and is the patron saint of the country Spain.
Because James is the patron saint of Spain, the Spanish variations on James, such as Jacob, Iago, and Santiago, became popular masculine names in many Spanish-speaking countries.
How Popular Is the Name Santiago?
Santiago has been used frequently in the United States since 1880, when the earliest records show the name was in the top 1000 most popular names for boys in the United States.
The name Santiago has seen steady popularity for the last century, gradually going up and down in the ranks but rarely falling out of the top 1000.
From 1921 to 1995, Santiago stayed within the 400 to 600 range of ranking. The name began to rise in popularity in the mid-2000s (hitting rank 278 in 2005), then exploded in popularity in recent years.
Santiago is currently a very popular name, breaking into the top 100 most popular names in 2017. In 2021, the name remained in the top 100 at rank 63 (3).
How Do I Pronounce Santiago?
The name Santiago is pronounced “sahn-TEE-ah-goh.”
Is Santiago a Boy or Girl Name?
Santiago has traditionally been used as a masculine name. The name is a tribute to the apostle Saint James, who was male.
Variations of Santiago
Santiago has primarily been adapted to Central and South American languages.
- Dídac (Catalan)
- Didacus (Medieval Spanish)
- Diego (Spanish)
- Iago (Portuguese)
- Santi (Spanish)
- Thiago (Brazilian Portuguese)
- Tiago (Portuguese)
Nicknames for Santiago
Since Santiago is a longer name, many people use these popular nicknames instead.
Similar Names to Santiago
Many of these similar names share an origin with the name Santiago.
Middle Names for Santiago
The best middle names for Santiago share its Spanish roots.
Sibling Names for Santiago
These sibling names take inspiration from the Spanish origin of Santiago.
Famous People Named Santiago
Many famous people named Santiago have seen great success in the sports world.
- Santiago Bernabéu: Spanish soccer player and former president for Real Madrid.
- Santiago Cabrera: Chilean actor well-known for his role in the TV series Merlin.
- Santiago Cazorla: Spanish soccer player for the club Al Sadd.
- Santiago de Murcia: guitar player and composer from the Baroque music period.
- Santiago Solari: Argentine soccer player who played for Real Madrid and Inter Milan.
Santiago in Popular Culture
Santiago has been used in many TV shows and books as a name for fictional characters.
- Santiago: a character in the novel Interview With A Vampire.
- Santiago: the main character in the novel The Alchemist.
- Santiago: the main character in the book The Old Man and the Sea.
- Santiago: a character in the TV series Friday Night Lights.
- Santiago Hernandez: a character in the television series Bump.
- Santiago Vega: the main character in the TV series Penny Dreadful: City of Angels.
Here are some frequently asked questions regarding the name Santiago.
Where Does the Name Santiago Come From?
Santiago is a name originating in Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries. The name was first found in written records in Galicia, Spain. It was originally a surname, though it rose in popularity as a first name in later years.