National Rebecca Day is celebrated on August 9 annually. Rebecca or Rebekah ‘Rivkah’ in Hebrew, is a feminine given name that originates from the Hebrew language. The name comes from the verb ‘ribbqah,’ meaning ‘to tie firmly.’ Both “Jones’ Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names” and the “N.O.B.S. Study Bible Name List” suggest that Rebecca means captivating beauty, or ‘to bind’ or ‘to tie.’ W. F. Albright — American archaeologist and biblical scholar believed that it meant soil or earth. In the Bible, the matriarch Rebecca was the wife of Isaac and the mother of Jacob and Esau. In the Authorized Version — an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England — of the 1600s, the spelling Rebekah is used in Genesis, and the Latin Rebecca was retained in the New Testament. So the earlier western spelling is ‘Rebecca,’ but the influential “King James Version” uses both spellings, Rebecca and Rebekah. Both are currently in use in the English-speaking world.
History of National Rebecca Day
In the United Kingdom, a resurgence of Biblical names led to Rebecca being ranked among the top 100 female names during the 1960s, the top 20 during the 1970s, and the top 10 during the 1980s. It became the most popular female name in 1994. After that, it decreased in popularity. Rebecca moved out of the top 10 in 2000 and by 2009 had fallen to 77th place. In 2013, it was ranked 120th.
Rebecca was used in the United States beginning with the colonization of the Puritans in New England in the 17th century. Since that time, the name Rebecca has gone up and down in the popularity rankings. However, it has consistently ranked in the top 200 most popular names for girls since 1880 — the first year for which the Social Security Administration documented the popularity of baby names.
In 2011, the Social Security Administration ranked Rebecca 148th in popularity and 178th in 2013. The name has several variations in spelling such as Rebeca (Galician, Portuguese, Spanish, Welsh), Rébecca, Rebeque (French), Rebeccah, Rebekkah, Rebeckah (English), Rebecka (Swedish), Rebeka (Albanian, Bulgarian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Serbian, Slovenian, Yoruba), Rebekah (Hebrew), and Rebekka (Danish, Finnish, German, Icelandic, Norwegian, Russian, Ukrainian).
In entertainment, three of the most popular adaptations featuring the name are a novel by English author Daphne du Maurier and two films. For the latter, the 1940 one was directed by Alfred Hitchcock while the 2020 remake was directed by Ben Wheatley for Netflix. All three pieces depict an unnamed young woman who rashly marries a wealthy widower, only to discover that he and his household are haunted by the memory of his deceased first wife, the title character.
National Rebecca Day timeline
The novel “Rebecca” sells 2.8 million copies.
Writer Maureen Freely publishes “The Other Rebecca.”
Stephen King alludes to the character of Mrs. Danvers in his thriller “Bag of Bones.”
Rebeca is the 27th most popular name for baby girls in Romania.
National Rebecca Day FAQs
Is the movie “Rebecca” based on a true story?
No, “Rebecca,” the movie is not based on true events.
Has the novel “Rebecca” won any awards?
In 1938, Daphne du Maurier won the National Book Award for the favorite novel of that year, voted by members of the American Booksellers Association.
How long did du Maurier take to write “Rebecca?”
Du Maurier finished her manuscript in less than four months.
National Rebecca Day Activities
Read the novel
“Rebecca” the novel is a gripping psychological thriller that will have you glued with every page. This is the perfect day to curl up on the couch with a copy.
Watch the films
Both versions of the “Rebecca” films are highly acclaimed. Have a movie night with your pals and compare notes on the two.
Hug a Becca
Rebeccas deserve all the love in the world! Hug them and let them know that you value them.
5 Interesting Facts About “Rebecca”
Rebecca in films
There are two films by the name “Rebecca,” one released in 1940 and the other in 2020.
Rebecca in novels
The 1938 novel “Rebecca” by Daphne du Maurier inspired the 2020 film “Rebecca.”
Highly rated movie
“Rebecca” (1940) won the Academy Award for Best Picture.
Novel influences pop culture
Taylor Swift's song "Tolerate It" is inspired by the novel “Rebecca.”
Du Maurier Watches, founded by the grandson of Daphne du Maurier, released a limited-edition collection of two watches in 2013 based on characters from the novel “The Rebecca” and “The Maxim.”
Why We Love National Rebecca Day
We celebrate prominent people
From actors to singers, visual artists, poets, radio presenters, chemists, to writers named Rebecca, this day acknowledges them. We celebrate their lives and achievements.
We learn history
The name Rebecca has a rich history. We learn more about it today, from its beginnings to the present.
It's celebration time
National Rebecca Day is a time to party. We eat cake and raise a glass in honor of all Rebeccas around the world.
National Rebecca Day dates