Is the name "Manaf" permissible? What does it mean?
I haven't got any useful information anywhere till now . Was this the name of any Companion (may Allah be pleased with them)?
Jazaak Allah Khair
Manaf was a pre-Islamic idol which the Arabs believed was God and touched it for blessings. There's no actual meaning of the name.
I think it's not a good idea to name oneself after false deities.
 Tarikh at-Tabari, Volume 6 - Muhammad at Mekka, topic: Abd Manaf. Who was Abd Manaf and his lineage.
What our brother @Sayyid quoted is true: Manaaf مناف was a per-Islamic deity or Idol the people in Mekka were worshiping.
And according to the fatwas I'm adding as a reference it is not permissible to give anyone the name of ‘Abd Manaaf. so calling them Manaaf would be even worse if people had this deity in mind. Abdu Maanaf have been quoted in some ahadith like this one (version of sahih al-Bukahri).
On the other hand مَناف is an Arabic name for a male:
اسم مذكر (ولد)
اسم علم مذكر عربي، من الفعل نافَ الشيءُ: ارتفع وأشرفَ. والمناف: المرتَقى، قمة الجبل.
Manaaf is an Arabic noun -and masculine name-, from the verb naafa a-shay'o (the thing) نافَ الشيءُ: (the thing) has ascended or elevated or topped. al-Manaaf المناف: uphill, the top of the mountain ... (My own translation take it carefully)
From this meaning we can conclude that naming a child Manaaf is acceptable (according to my 2nd reference). I could even quote other likewise fatawa saying that -only- in connection with 'Abd/'Abdu عبد it is not allowed for naming somebody.
A better choice (because of the lacking -direct- connection to the deity) for a name with the same meaning would be** منيف Moneef**.
نافَ الشيءُ نوْفاً: ارتفع وأَشْرف، وفي حديث عائشة تصف أَباها رضي اللّه عنهما: ذاك طَوْد مُنيفٌ أَي عالٍ مُشْرِف، يقال نافَ الشيءُ ينُوف إذا طال وارتفع، وأَناف الشيءُ على غيره ارتفع وأَشرف، ويقال لكل مُشرف على غيره إنه لمُنيف.
And Allah knows best!
this might be an old post, but it's kinda personal to me too :). I am Manaf and I know what does my name means.
let's make it Simple, Manaf means something in Hight place (physically)or on top. exact meaning of Sami or Samy in Arabic language.
Old story, Arabs used to worship stuff and give them names, some of them use to make a statue from food and eat it after; anyways, they made a big one its like the biggest and give it the name Manaf; people worshiped that statue and give their sones names such as Abdul Manaf "The worshiper of Manaf".
Now, Islam came, we only worship god hence, Worshiper of X (where X is not equal to any of god names ) is forbidden.