Backround on Vadim

Background on Vadim (pronounced vuh-DEEM)

The name Vadim is reasonably common in the ex-Soviet republics, and most Vadims tend to be from there. Vadim is a unique name, not a truncation of Vladimir or expansion of Dima, though it changes to localized forms such as Vadimas in Lithuanian and Wadim in Poland.

The history of where the name Vadim originates, and what exactly it means is fuzzy. Several sources that I have heard of so far have come up with the following:

  • Vadim has a root in Slavic vedet or vadit or wiedziec, which means “to know” – as the old magicians in pagan Slavic beliefs were called veduny – “the knowing ones”. “Vedet” still exists in Czech and Polish today (wadzic means “to argue” though).
  • “The Dictionary of Russian Names” says that Vadim came from Scandanavia, probably Norway or Finland. In Old Norse, vedjung means “the secret spirit of the forest”. The name migrated to Russia through the North, likely Novgorod, for it has the closest of all Slavic cities connection with Scandanavia.
  • One of the first Dukes of Nogorod was named Vadim. Vadim Novgorodsky was a leader of a popular uprising in Novgorod (in what is now Russia) in 882 A.D., and he got the nickname “Vadim the Brave” for his great courage in battles.
  • In the Torah, there is a name Obadia (Ovadia) there and it was supposedly transformed into Ovadim, “Vadim” in Russia when Jews migrated there.
  • Saint Vadim was reputed to live in Russia during the 4th century A.D. Bademas is a translation of Vadim, so Saint Bademus of Persia was probably really Saint Vadim. St. Bademus (Vadim) of Persia (+376), now Iran, is celebrated on April 22 – the mane’s or commemoration day. In old Russian calendar, it is April 9.
  • Vadim comes from some old Russian word vaditi which means “to cheat” or “scandal maker”
  • Vadim, a shortened form of the Slav personal name Vadimir, composed of the elements vad (to tame) + mir (peace) or mer (great). This name was not accepted by the Orthodox church as a baptismal name, but it was commonly used in the Middle Ages as a familiar name borne in addition to an official given name.
  • Vadim comes from the Russian ancient Voda, Vodit’, i.e. being a leader.
  • The Dictionary of Russian Names in Art and Literature says that Vadim became popular in modern Russia at the beginning of the 19th century, with the rise of Romanticism.
  • Zhukovsky has a famous ballad entitled “Vadim”
  • Vadim Roshin is a hero in Alexey Tosltoy’s novel “Hojdenie po mukam”
  • Novalis, a famous German poet has a long poem, an imitation of the anciant German saga, the protagonist of which is called Vadim.
  • A common usage in Russia is that of “scandal maker”
  • Check out Vadim according to the Kalabanianas
  • Vadim is originally a Greek name meaning “a person who creates trouble” (This one must be right 🙂 or possibly “unpredictable”
  • Vadim is the name of a story by the 1800’s Russian author Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov. The text in Russian is available here.
  • Sometimes, Vadim is spelled with a “W” as “Wadim”, especially by Germans, and there is at least one Wadim on the list.
  • Prince Vadim Wolkonsky, grandson of Tolstoy, lived in Rome and appeared in Fellini movies of the 60’s.
  • Vadim comes from the sanskrit word ‘vadinah’ which means ‘to protect’.
  • Vadim has the form in it of the Latin “vadere” which means “to go, to go on, to go for it,” etc.
  • “aVadim” is the plural of “slave” in Hebrew and is found in the Torah, prominently featured in the key Passover formula “avadim hainu bamizraim” (“slaves were we in Egypt”), though this may be a coincidence of language. Here’s how to write Vadim in Hebrew (and another).
  • Also in Hebrew, “Ovadyah” (pronounced like a dimunitive form of Vadim) is a compound of the root ‘-B-D and Y-H.
    – The first root has to do with “labor”, be it forced or voluntary. Its first letter is an Ayin, which can be vocalized as A, E, or O indifferently, just as the second letter (Bet) can be read both as B and as V.
    – YaH is a theophoric suffix, hence the name Ovadyah means “servant (Eved – plur. Avadim) of God”
  • The element Vanadium could have been named after a Vadim. It wasn’t, but that’s besides the point. 😉
  • Vadim comes from the Greek name Didymus (twin) – in the Bible, one of disciples of Jesus, Thomas changed his name to Didymus
  • Vadim consists of two Slavic roots – “vad, vaditi” using the meaning of “attraction” in words like “privaditi”, “povaditsya” etc; “ima, imati” using the meaning of “to have” yielding “one who has attraction”

There are many nicknames for Vadim – probably more than there are Vadims. The more common ones includes Vadyk, Dima, with some less commonly used ones such as Vad and the Russian derivatives of the previous including Dimka, Vadia and Vadimka, Vadyusha, Vadyushka, etc.

**** All this information was pulled from vadim.com thanks to Vadim Akselrod ****

He also has a page on all the Vadim’s on the net.

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One Comment on “Backround on Vadim”

  1. ken Says:

    i now know way too much information about your g’damn name.


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