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Gender: Male Meaning of Brian: "strong, virtuous, and honorable" Origin of Brian: Irish Brian's Popularity in 2017: #217

The name Brian is a boy's name of Irish origin meaning "strong, virtuous, and honorable". Brian is ranked #217 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Names That Mean Strong, Brave or Powerful and discussed in our forums with posts like "Name Association Game".

From the experts:

Brian has long been among the most popular of the Irish imports for boys. It landed on the US popularity list in 1925, entered the Top 100 where it remained for 60+ years, and reached the Top 10 in the 1970s. 2016 marked the first year since before World War II that Brian finished outside the Top 200 boys' names.

In Ireland its claim to fame was tied to Brian Boru, the most famous of all Irish warrior-kings, credited with driving the Vikings out of Ireland. In the modern world, Brian has some pretty diverse associations--to newscaster Williams, the movie Monty Python's Life of Brian and as Marilyn Manson's real name.

Bryan is a common alternative spelling.

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

Famous People Named Brian

Brian Boru, King of Ireland
Brian Douglas Williams, American broadcast journalist
Brian Eno (aka Peter George St. John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno), English musician
(Martin) Brian Mulroney, 18th prime minister of Canada
Brian Russell de Palma, American film director
Brian Manion Dennehy, American actor
Brian Anthony Boitano, American figure skater
Brian McKnight, American singer
Brian Austin Green, American actor
Brian Samuel Epstein, English manager of The Beatles
Brian Edward Gottfried, American tennis player
Brian Holden, American actor, singer, writer
Brian Minchin, British TV producer
Brian Douglas Wilson, American musician of The Beach Boys
(Louis) Brian Piccolo, American NFL football player, subject of film "Brian's Song"
Brian Howard Clough, English footballer and manager
Brian de la Puente, American football player
Brian Kerwin, American actor
Brian Urlacher, American football player
Brian Denis Cox, Scottish actor
Brian Regan, American comedian
Brian Justin Crum, American musician
Brian Rosenthal, American actor and singer
Brian Thomas "B-Rok" Littrell, American singer of the Backstreet Boys
Brian Logan Dales, lead singer of American band The Summer Set
Brian Leo Bianchini, American model/actor
Brian May, guitarist for British band Queen
Brian Hallisay, American actor
Brian Howe, American actor
Brian Phillip "Head" Welch, guitarist for American band Korn
Brian 'Astro' Bradley, American actor and Rapper
Brian 'Q' Quinn, American comedian from The Tenderloins and Impractical Jokers
Brian Awadis aka FaZe Rug, American YouTuber
Brian Sean O'Connor (b. 2007), son of American television personality Kevin O'Connor
Brian Jones, Multi-instrumentalist and rhythm guitarist for The Rolling Stones
Brian Ross Weitz, musician and founding member of the band Animal Collective
Brian Johnson, lead singer of AC/DC
Brian Kang/Kang Yonghyun, bassist, singer, songwriter, and rapper of the South Korean band Day6; more popularly known by his stage name Young K
Brian Firkus, American musician, TV personality, and drag queen
Brian Timothy Geraghty, American actor

Pop Culture References for the name Brian

Sir Brian de Bois-Guilbert, character in "Ivanhoe" by Sir Walter Scott
Brian Griffin, dog character on "Family Guy"
Brian Cohen, main character in 1979 film "Monty Python's Life of Brian"
Brian Kinney, character on "Queer as Folk"
Brian Finn, character in "Keeping the Faith"
Brian O'Conner, character in "Fast and the Furious" series
Brian Johnson, character in film "The Breakfast Club"
Brian Johnson character on British TV series "My Parents Are Aliens"
Brian Shelby, character in film "Vanilla Sky"
Brian Harding, character in videogame "Dream Daddy"
Brian Davis, main character on TV series "What About Brian?"
Brian Dufford, character in webcomic "Camp Weedonwantcha"
Brian Marsh, character in "Prince of Darkness"
Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, character in Harry Potter series
Brian "Otis" Zvonecek, character on TV's "Chicago Fire"
Brian / Green, character in "Monster Prom"

Bryant, Briant, Bryon, Bryan, Briano, Brien, Bryen, Brion, Bryent


_mamabears Says:


my beloved grandad’s name was Brian and even though my partner doesn’t wish to have this as a first name I would defiantly included this as a middle name. My grandparents mean the world to me!!❤️💙

NameLover 11 Says:


I love this name!! Such a great alternative to Liam and Aidan/Aiden. The meaning is amazing. Definitely plan on using as either a first or middle name.

Hailey Says:


My brother's best friend was Brian, he passed away just a year ago. <3