According to the Talmud, the lion is “the king of beasts”. The Bible has over one hundred references to the lion, whether they be metaphors, word-images, or poems and/or stories. The Lion of Judah is an extremely strong and important symbol, and can be found on many synagogue Arks, as part of the design.
Years ago, while researching my ancestry, I found that the name “Judah” belonged to one of my Great, Great, Great Grandfathers. That name is taken from the Hebrew “Yehudah” and is associated with the lion. Yehudah was one of the twelve sons of Jacob.
The names “Aryeh”, “Ari”, “Ariel” are derivatives. The Yiddish of “Judah” and “Aryeh” is commonly known as “Judah Aryeh”, “Judah Leib”, and “Aryeh Leib”. Also, “Yidel and Yudel” are common Yiddish offshoots. The English “Jude” stems from “Judah”. There are so many variants, and each child that is named, is done so for of personal reasons.
The above names are male versions, and there are female versions, as well, such as both “Ari and Ariel”, (which are also male names) and so on. “Arielle and Areilla” are female versions.
The list goes on and on for both male and female derivatives.
I find that name meanings are important within the familial fold. They can often tell a lot about time and place, and history. Names can be illuminating forces throughout generations, carried on as given names or middle names. For me, names are fascinating. They tell their own ancestral stories.