Gender: Male Meaning of Arthur: " bear" Origin of Arthur: Celtic Arthur's Popularity in 2019: #178

Arthur Origin and Meaning

The name Arthur is a boy's name of Celtic origin meaning " bear".

Arthur, once the shining head of the Knights of the Round Table, is, after decades of neglect, now being polished up and restored by some stylish parents, emerging as a top contender among names for the new royal prince.

In addition to its leading role in the Arthurian legends, Arthurs figure prominently in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, Edgar Allan Poe's The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket and George Eliot's Adam Bede. There are also countless Arthurs in children's literature, movies, and TV -- including The Fonz of Happy Days fame. More recently, Arthur was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Santa in the eponymous movie Arthur Christmas.

Arthur has many notable namesakes, including playwright Arthur Miller; writer/astronomer Arthur C. Clarke; writers Arthur Conan Doyle, Arthur Rimbaud and Arthur Koestler; philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer; conductor Arthur Fiedler; and tennis great Arthur Ashe, the first African American to win the U.S. Open. Queen Victoria's seventh child was Prince Arthur.

Arthur was a Top 20 name from at least 1880 through 1926. And in 2011, actress Selma Blair named her son Arthur Saint.

16 names similar to Arthur

These 16 names were selected by our users that were looking for other names like Arthur. If you didn't find an alternative name that you like better than Arthur, try our name generator. It allows you to go beyond the similarities of a name, which can provide a lot of inspiration!

Find other names based on Arthur using our baby name generator.


Rank in US: #178

- this week

Famous People Named Arthur

Pop Culture References for the name Arthur

Arthor, Artie, Arte, Authur, Art, Arty, Arther

Arthur's International Variations

Artur (Irish) Artek, Arto (Finnish) Artus (French) Artis (Czech) Artair (Scottish Gaelic) Arturek (Polish) Thanos, Anthanasios (Greek) Arturo (Italian)


TechnoKitten Says:


It reminds me of that cartoon where the mean character is called Arthur

RainstreamofSpiritClan Says:


That's funny to me because I got my mom to watch the BBC's Merlin and she kept calling Prince/King Arthur "Author" I think in her case it was due to the British accents of the characters, since it becomes something like "Authuh"

RainstreamofSpiritClan Says:


I didn't really like the name Arthur until I watched Merlin. Now, though, I wouldn't say it's one of my absolute favorites it has definitely jumped up a lot in my estimation.

I'm really hoping that if Prince William and Kate Middleton have another boy they name him Arthur, so there'll be a Prince Arthur...

BayleighWelch23 Says:


Well, i really love the name. It's my brother's name he's 13, so yeah. It's also my dad's name, and his grandfather's name. I never met him, but he was in the U.S. military and he was at the Pearl Harbor, and everyone tells me he was a really good man. I know he is very well loved, he has left a strong impact on my family so yeah, there's that:) I'm from the south, Tennessee, and i like a lot of classic English names, and i don't let my family's opinion waver mine. If they love the name, then that's all that matters.

eveyalecia Says:


Curious what your source is for that meaning? I've never seen it listed as anything other than bear, king, or bear king.

paulapuddephatt Says:


I'm liking this lately. It's good to see it coming back into style, along with other vintage names.

cabosanmucus Says:


something told me the meaning of Arthur was bear because in Welsh "arth" means bear. I'm getting kinda good at this

MiloChan55 Says:


It actually means noble and Courageous.

LittleMiss79 Says:


If I named a son Arthur it would mostly be because of the wonderful Arthur Lowe (Captain Mainwaring from Dad's Army)!

Amber Renee Says:


This name has started to grow on me since someone suggested the nn Thor.

Impwood Says:


I really liked this name but at the moment my thoughts are too full of Arthur Donnithorne from "Adam Bede", which I've just finished reading. A foolish man with a pitiable fate.

EleanorAll1 Says:


I don't really like the name itself but there are so many Arthurs in fiction and in real life that I absolutely love so I wish I liked this name better.

JH Says:


I really like Arthur. It's very classic and classy.

headintheclouds Says:


This is one of my favorite boys' names. While it's never been one of my absolute favorite ones, Arthur's consistently been on the list for years, and I think it's so strong and handsome, classic yet not too common, grounded yet also romantic- overall a wonderful choice.

Leah3456 Says:


I love the association to the King Arthur legend. I wish it were real!

Sarah Jomaa Says:


Ugh, yes, BBC's Arthur Pendragon completely turned me onto the name. Love his character so much

Theodora_Phoenix Says:


Drives me insane when th is pronounced as f. They're intended to be two completely different sounds, and I had thought people outgrew that kind of talk as kids.

indiefendi2 Says:


Heard a British girl say ar-fuh and that ruined it.

sarahjames0774 Says:


Good middle name to go with Arther? I like Arther Reily but my husband isn't a fan.

jasminegarden Says:


this was my grandfather's name & I really hope I get to honour him by naming my son Arthur one day, or to at least use it as a middle name :)

eveyalecia Says:


One of my favorite names! It was never really on my radar before, but a couple recent pop culture references like BBC Merlin and Inception really turned me on to it.

Renee5322 Says:


This is one of my absolute favorite boys names ever! The nickname Artie is pretty cute.

Guest Says:


I always hear "author" when I hear this name.

Theodora_Phoenix Says:


I don't like Arthur too much. I definitely don't hate it. It's just very common in my area, and I really like uncommon names more.

AnonymousPerson Says:


I do really like this name. It's among my favourite boys' names, actually.

freddiethepink Says:


Arthur is one of my favourite names! He is classic, handsome and kingly. As if King Arthur wasn't enough of a namesake, there's also Sherlock Holmes creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and playwright Arthur Miller. Nicknames Art, Artie or Arto are cute, though my personal favourite is Hart!

GranmaH Says:


My Grandson will be named Arthur. I am finding people want to talk the parents out of the name. I think it is a lovely old fashioned name and would like to get some opinions that would encourage the parents.