There are multiple origins and translations for the hugely popular name Ali:
1. Arabic name (عَلَى) [aali] and name-forming nterpretation - "exalted, high, lofty, sublime, eminent, excellence, noble, nondurable; gallant", one of the names of Allah.
Ali ibn Abi Talib (598-661) was the cousin and son-in-law of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, Fatima`s husband one of the four Rightly-Guided Caliphs along with Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman. Ali ruled over the Islamic Caliphate from 656 to 661, and was the first male convert to Islam. Sunni Muslims consider Ali the fourth and final of the Rashidun, while Shi'a Muslims regard Ali as the first Imam and consider him and his descendants the rightful successors to Muhammad, all of which are members of the Ahl al-Bayt, the household of Muhammad. This disagreement split the Ummah into the Sunni and Shi'a branches.
After Battle of the Trench Prophet Muhammad gave Ali the name Asadullah - "the lion (Asad) of God".
2. Sanskrit (Hindu name अलि) which actually means - "honest; secure; bee; scorpion".
3. Shortened form of the name Alistair/Alastair/Alexander etc.
May also refer to Ali (male name ).