The Name of Prophet Nuh نوح alayhis-salaam.
His real name was عبد الغفار Abdul-Ghaffaar.
Nuh is a non-Arabic name but is mu’arrab (the last letter can accept kasra and tanween).
The origin of the name is Syriac and it means الشاكر “The Thankful”.
In Arabic نوح means to cry or weep.
He was given the name Nuh because of the abundant amount of times he cried over himself.
Source: al-Itqaan by as-Suyuti
A follow-up question asked in our Q&A groups,
“Where do they get his ‘real name’ when Allaah uses Nuh? What’s the daleel for this, is this from ahadeeth?
Jazaakallah khayran for your very important question.
The reality is that this is a science in Islam called genealogy. The salaf would memorize and learn lineages of others. It could be taken from directly the Prophet *peace be upon him* or it could have been knowledge that the Companions and others of that time preserved in their chests.
The narration that speaks about Nuh’s name and the reason why he was given the name Nuh is collected by Haakim in his Mustadrak of the “sahihayn”. Reference: 2/545.
The name Nuh was not his birth name and was given after his birth because of a certain attribute – crying a lot. You can say it is more of a لَقَب (title).
Just as Ibrahim is known as Khalilullah; Khalilullah isn’t his name but a title.
Likewise, as we saw in our post on Prophet Idrees. Idrees wasn’t his real name but Allah mentioned it in Surah Maryam. His real name was Akh-nookh, wallahu ‘alam.