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What does the name Pele (as in the Brazilian football legend) actually mean? Is there a Portuguese meaning at all?

Question #58250. Asked by doomed.
Last updated Aug 22 2016.

Related Trivia Topics: Sports   Name Game  
Answer has 10 votes
Currently Best Answer
24 year member
2371 replies avatar

Answer has 10 votes.

Currently voted the best answer.
According to this interview, it was a childhood rubbish nickname, which he didn't like.

Why Pelé?
It was not a nickname I wanted as a child. My family called me Dico, my mates in the street called me Edson. When they started to call me Pelé I didn’t want them to. I thought it was a rubbish name. Now you even see it in the Bible. In Hebrew Pele means miracle. A theologian discovered this, and then told us. Which means, its there in the Bible. Sometimes I ask Jesus, “Man, Explain to me.” I know I will die like everyone. We’re just waiting for the hour. These things,this lack of explanations, make us curious, often I don’t have the answer. Only God knows.


[Link updated on August 22, 2016 by shuehorn]

Response last updated by shuehorn on Aug 22 2016.
Jul 10 2005, 2:59 PM
Answer has 4 votes
19 year member
4407 replies avatar

Answer has 4 votes.
According to this site, it was a childhood nickname, and Pele himself has said that he has no idea what it means.


Jul 10 2005, 3:01 PM
Answer has 4 votes
20 year member
3273 replies

Answer has 4 votes.
As for the Portuguese meaning, it translates to the word for 'skin'. (But that's without the accent on the e...)

Jul 10 2005, 4:39 PM
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