Does the verb "to rob" come from the famous robber "Robin Hood", was that name created after the verb, or is it simply a fun coincidence?

  • The first name Robin is a bird, there are many even traditional names based on nature phenomenons. Think plants (Hazel, Rose, Daisy, Poppy, Willow...) seasons and similar (Dawn, Autumn, Summer), or, as in this case, birds. – Stephie Nov 4 '17 at 7:51
  • @Stephie, it's interesting that while most nature-based names are almost exclusively applied to women, Robin is both the only common bird-derived name, and commonly male – Chris H Nov 4 '17 at 8:08
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    @ChrisH while Robin Wright might disagree, you are mostly correct. In Germanic traditions, there is also "Falk" (= "Falcon") known since the middle ages for men, or the non-bird "Wolf / Wulf". "Leo" (Latin for lion) is also still very popular today, in many languages. – Stephie Nov 4 '17 at 8:17
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    The name Robin does not come from the bird, it's the other way round. Robin used to be a common nickname for men named Robert. In the Middle Ages many familiar birds were given human nicknames (e.g. Jenny Wren, Jack Daw) and in the case of 'Robin Redbreast', it's the human name that has stuck. – Kate Bunting Nov 4 '17 at 9:01
  • Please include the research you’ve done. Questions that can be answered using commonly-available references are off-topic. – Edwin Ashworth Nov 4 '17 at 12:20

The Merriam-Webster's Collegiate® Dictionary

Etymology: Middle English robben, from Anglo-French rober, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German roubōn to rob ― more at REAVE

Date: 13th century

So I do not think it has anything to do with Robin Hood the outlaw.

  • Looking up and quoting references the OP is expected to have checked is not what is required on ELU. – Edwin Ashworth Nov 4 '17 at 12:19

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