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Irish Gaelic Names for Boys

DonovanHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "dark"
  • Description:

    One of the first of the appealing Irish surnames to take off in this country, this boys’ name has long outgrown its "Mellow Yellow" association, which came via the single from a sixties singer-songwriter named Donovan.

CaelHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "slender"
  • Description:

    Cael is the name of the angel of the zodiac sign of Cancer and also of a warrior of Irish mythology. Its ascendance to the Top 1000 over the past decade probably has to do with its similarity to Cale and Kale (and Kyle and Cayden etcetera).

EoghanHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish Gaelic
  • Meaning:

    "born of the yew tree"
  • Description:

    Pronounced like Owen, this was the name of several early Irish kings and saints, as well as a celebrated Ulster hero. Often spelled with two 'n's in Scotland, it has been Anglicized as Ewan, Ewen, Euan, Owen, Hugh, or Eugene.

FionnHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "fair or white"
  • Description:

    Fionn, the modern Irish form of Finn, is more popular in Ireland these days than Finn, which is rising fast in the U.S. where Fionn is virtually unknown. Though some sources list the pronunciation as finn, others say fee-UN or fee-ON. It's the namesake of a great hero from Irish mythology, Fionn MacCumhaill, who acquired divine wisdom by eating an enchanted salmon of knowledge.

BrickHeart

  • Origin:

    Word name, various origins
  • Description:

    This is an Anglicized form of various names; the Irish Gaelic O Bruic; German, Bruck or Breck, meaning "swamp" or "wood"; Yiddish, Brik, "bridge"; and Slovenian, Bric, "dweller from a hilly place." Gosh, and we thought it was just a macho word name invented by Tennessee Williams for the hero of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

GuthrieHeart

  • Origin:

    Scottish
  • Meaning:

    "windy place"
  • Description:

    Guthrie, one of the most attractive Scottish names that's also a surname, has a particularly romantic, windswept aura, with a touch of the buckaroo thrown in.

RuadhanHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "red-haired"
  • Description:

    Ruadhan (sometimes spelt with a fada: Ruadhán) is a fashionable name in its native Ireland. Borne one of the Twelve Irish Apostles, it originated as a diminutive of Ruadh, meaning "red-haired". It has sometimes been Anglicized as Rowan.

KeaneHeart

  • Origin:

    Gaelic
  • Meaning:

    "ancient"
  • Description:

    Has a sharp investigative quality that's not a bad thing to impart to a child.

CiananHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish, diminutive of Cian
  • Description:

    This original spelling may present its challenges outside of Ireland, but it certainly has a more poetic look to it. Those daunted by the pronunciation obstacles may wish to consider Keenan.

DaithiHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish Gaelic variation of David
  • Meaning:

    "beloved"
  • Description:

    Irish form of David

CaolánHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish Gaelic
  • Meaning:

    "slender lad"
  • Description:

    A Top 100 choice in Northern Ireland, Caolán shares many fashionable sounds with names like Cayden and Callan, but remains virtually unknown in the US.

OisínHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish Gaelic
  • Meaning:

    "little deer"
  • Description:

    The name of the son of the legendary Finn McCool is often Anglicized to Ossian, but the original has recently been revived in Ireland and is currently among the most popular boys' names there.

FingalHeart

  • Origin:

    Gaelic
  • Meaning:

    "fair stranger"
  • Description:

    Originally a nickname for Viking invaders, it gained fresh impetus in the 18th century when James Macpherson made Fingal the central character in his Ossianic poems. An offbeat addition to the Fin- family of names.

AoibheannHeart

  • Origin:

    Irish
  • Meaning:

    "beautiful sheen"
  • Description:

    Pronounced like the word "even," this was a common name among the ancient royal families of Ireland, and has now become popular again.