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Irish names: The best celebrity imports for St. Patrick’s Day

Irish names have been making the trans-Atlantic crossing for centuries, beginning with easily assimilated ones like Patrick and Kathleen, Kevin and Brian and Ryan. But recently, thanks to a few high-profile celebs in both the entertainment and literary worlds, we’ve been introduced to some intriguingly authentic Irish names we hadn’t met up with before. Here, to commemorate  St. Paddy’s Day, are some of the best.

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Malachy McCourt

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There’s Malachi and then there’s Malachy . Malachi (pronounced with an eye sound at the end) is the Hebrew name of an Old Testament prophet that now ranks at #163 in the popularity charts. Malachy (ending in an ee sound) was the name of two famous high kings of Ireland, and came to our attention via Angela’s Ashes as the name of author Frank McCourt’s father and brother. Brother Malachy wrote a best-seller of his own.

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