NEW YORK – Nothing was normal about the birth of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's child, so naturally, neither was their baby's name.
The child -- whose pending arrival created a frenzy of hyperbole making it for some the most awaited baby since Jesus -- was named Shiloh, which fittingly means "Messiah" or "Peaceful One."
Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt was born Saturday evening -- via Caesarean section, according to People magazine -- in Namibia where her famous parents had withdrawn for the birth, aided by considerable protection from the African country's government.
As of Tuesday, the baby was reportedly in good health, though the family was yet to make a public appearance. The couple also have two adopted children, 4-year-old Maddox and 16-month-old Zahara.
In a statement to People magazine, Jolie thanked the staff of Cottage Medi-Clinic Hospital. Jolie's obstetrician from Los Angeles, Dr. Jason Rothbart, told People that he delivered the child, weighing seven pounds, by Caesarean section "due to breech presentation."
Pitt, he said, "was with Angelina in the operating room the entire time and cut the umbilical cord of his daughter. The surgery and the birth went flawlessly."
A Hebrew name, Shiloh is "generally understood as denoting the Messiah, `the peaceful one,"' according to Easton's Bible Dictionary, the 1897 work of biblical definitions.
The Web site http://www.babynames.com lists Shiloh as a name that can apply to either a boy or girl. It also points out the famous Battle of Shiloh in 1862, a pivotal battle in the Civil War fought in southwestern Tennessee near a church named Shiloh.
The child's middle name, Nouvel, most obviously translates from the French, meaning "new." If one were to take a literal approach to analyzing the entire name, Jolie and Pitt could appear exceedingly bold in dubbing their daughter the "new Messiah."
Bruce Lansky, a self-described "baby name guru" and author of "100,000-plus Baby Names," says the name is "unusual without being silly."
"What is interesting is Brad and Angelina went all the way to Namibia to have their baby girl and rather than choose a traditional African name to signify the birth -- like many thought they would -- they chose Shiloh, also meaning 'God is great' in Hebrew," says Lansky.
Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt is only the latest instance of a unique name bestowed on a celebrity child. Lately, names rooted in Hebrew are all the rage.
Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes' baby, who was preceded by nearly as much anticipation as Jolie and Pitt's, was famously named Suri, which the couple claimed means "princess" in Hebrew (or "red rose" in Persian). Some doubted the Hebrew origin, instead suggesting the more accurate meaning was "pointy nose" from Todas, a language spoken by a Southern India tribe.
Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin named their second child Moses, born in April. Their first child, Apple, remains one of the most renown examples of esoteric names given to celebrity babies.
Right now, a truly original name for a celebrity's child might simply be Jack, or Jill.