Biblical name meaning ‘dove’ in Hebrew; it is borne by a prophet whose adventures are the subject of one of the shorter books of the Bible. God appeared to Jonah and ordered him to go and preach in Nineveh. When Jonah disobeyed, God caused a storm to threaten the ship in which Jonah was travelling. His shipmates, realizing that Jonah was the cause of their peril, threw him overboard, whereupon the storm subsided. A ‘great fish’ swallowed Jonah and delivered him, willy-nilly, to the coasts of Nineveh. This story was immensely popular in the Middle Ages, and a favourite subject of miracle plays. There has been a recent modest revival in the name's popularity.