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Gender: Male Meaning of Bruce: "from the brushwood thicket" Origin of Bruce: Scottish and English from French Bruce's Popularity in 2017: #431

The name Bruce is a boy's name of French, Scottish, English origin meaning "from the brushwood thicket". Bruce is ranked #431 on our popularity charts and is often added to lists like Scottish Baby Names and discussed in our forums with posts like "Generation CAF #53 (w / occupations)".

From the experts:

Bruce is a Norman place name made famous by the Scottish king Robert the Bruce, who won Scotland's independence from England in the fourteenth century. It's perennially popular in Scotland, but has been rarely used here for a generation -- though the impact of Bruces Lee, Springsteen, Dern and Willis, as well as Batman's Bruce Wayne -- still lingers. At one time Bruce was so widespread in Australia, it became a nickname for any Ozzie man. An interesting alternative is Brix, the Normandy place name where the Bruce family originated.

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

Famous People Named Bruce

(Walter) Bruce Willis, American actor
Bruce Timm, American artist, character designer, animator, writer, producer and actor
Bruce Frederick Joseph Springsteen, American musician
Bruce Lee (Jun-fan), American actor and martial artist
Bruce MacLeish Dern, American actor
(William) Bruce Jenner, birth name of Caitlyn Marie Jenner, American decathlete and TV personality
Bruce Raymond Gradkowski, American football player
Bruce William Miller III, American football player
Bruce Lorne Campbell, American actor
Bruce Greenwood, Canadian actor and producer
Bruce Joseph Forsyth-Johnson, British TV presenter
Bruce Dickinson, British lead singer of band Iron Maiden
Bruce Leslie McLaren, New Zealand race car designer and driver
Bruce Smith, American NFL Hall of Fame football player
Bruce Seldon, American boxer
Bruce William Boxleitner, American actor
Bruce Beresford, Australian film director
Bruce Cockburn, Canadian folk/rock guitarist and singer-songwriter
Bruce Hornsby, American pianist
Bruce Kulick, American musician of KISS and Grand Funk Railroad
Bruce Arians, American NFL head coach
Bruce Bochy, American baseball manager
Robert the Bruce aka Robert I, King of Scots

Pop Culture References for the name Bruce

Bruce Wayne aka Batman, DC Comics superhero
Bruce Banner aka The Incredible Hulk, Marvel Comics superhero
Bruce the Shark, character in "Finding Nemo"
Bruce Nolan, main character in 2004 film "Bruce Almighty"
Bruce Patman, character in "Sweet Valley High"
Bruce Picard, character in "Sims" series
Bruce, character on TV's "Grandfathered"
Bruce Goodman, character in video game 'Ace Attorney'
Bruce, minor character on TV's Family Guy
Bruce, one of the Delightful Children From Down The Lane on animated series "Codename: Kids Next Door"
The Bruces Sketch, Monty Python's Flying Circus
Bruce Bogtrotter, character in "Matilda"

Brucey, Brucie


ohbaby72 Says:


MadeleineClare (beautiful name btw), I think you were a bit harsh and incorrect in that reply to Bruce. This may be regional, but I remember the 80s and can tell you that the name Bruce was used in gay jokes and was thought of as effeminate. I completely understand what bruceoren was trying to communicate. He was indeed bullied because of his name, simple as that.

However, having said this, I will also agree with the other posts here that Bruce is a cool name for a boy **in our time today**. A lot has changed since the 70s and 80s and Bruce is becoming a popular name now. It's considered handsome and strong. I know of two baby Bruce's so far.

I think bruceoren was trying to spare any boys the taunting he suffered, and his good intent is what I see here. He doesn't realize how (thankfully) the perception today is completely different. I can also see how his posts could make others defensive, as they can only see Bruce in it's current context, which is positive. No one likes being told they are a bad parent for their name choice.

Bruce, I'm sorry you took so much sh*t for your name and people were such aholes. I agree about sparing kids silly names, but your name, go figure, has become cool and popular now. 40 years too late, sorry.

zsazsa00 Says:


I am recently loving the name Bruce. It seems to suit an older generation better, but I think the soft syllables would be well worn on a child as well. Classic names were never my style before but I am falling in love them now and this is on the top of my list for a little boy. Mostly because other then being a classic/traditional name it check all my other boxes like having nature ties, Celtic roots, historical context and good modern role models.
Batman definitely plays a role in getting my partner to love this name as he loves Batman, but I am also a huge DC fan (for many years now) and it's weird cause I never liked it before despite hearing it in use so much. I bet a little boy would love to share a name with Batman too. My sibs are named after historical figures and I always felt a little left out not having a fun namesake.

orenbrian Says:


I think deep-seated is the term you’re looking for. Yes, you successfully analyzed my life and I need to talk to someone. Thank you for that.
Well, it doesn't really matter if you think it is a masculine sounding name because you are not named Bruce. You are not in a position to make this call.

What about disrespect as an adult? I bet I need to talk to someone about that also?
Bruce did not have the same stigma in the past. I'm sure it was fine for your grandfather. But in the USA, in the 1980's, among native English speakers Bruce was considered effeminate.

I think that someone close to you, besides you grandfather is named Bruce or perhaps you are a wanna-be psychologist. That is fine, I didn't write the note for you, I wrote it for any young woman thinking of giving their infant son a soft sounding name like Bruce.

Also, Nameberry has banned my orenbruce account so I won't answer any more of these posts. If I saved just one boy from being named Bruce, then it was worthwhile. People: do your infant son a favor, don't give him a silly name.

MadeleineClaire Says:


It sounds like the issue isn’t with your name, it sounds like deep seeded insecurities about being picked on. I’m sorry to say your name isn’t what made you a target for horrible bullying, kids will just find anything to pick on you for. Bruce is one of the most masculine sounding names I know, it oozes with testosterone.
Honestly mate, you should talk to someone. I bet if you dig a little deeper you will realise there is some serious pain that goes beyond your name, which is my grandfather’s name too.
All the best.

cat dad Says:


Yes, amazing. Bruce is a soft pretty-sounding name which is a different issue from all the superstars that you just listed (you forgot Bruce Jenner) I never said I thought it was "pretty-boy" or feminine, just repeating what I hear in the popular media, specifically talk radio in Los Angeles and Johnny Carson to name a few.

Also, If I were Bruce Springsteen, Willis, Lee or Dickinson or any of the others I would wear the name proudly. If you are rich enough, tough enough or famous then it doesn't matter what your name is. Do a google search, what name did Frank Zappa choose for his girl? What about Sonny and Cher. If you are rich enough then it doesn't matter what your name is!

Obviously you are a better man than I am. Do you plan to name your son Bruce??

Bruce77 Says:


So let me see if I have this straight; you have Bruce Willis, Bruce Springsteen, Bruce Lee, Bruce Dickinson (lead singer of heavy metal group Iron Maiden), Bruce Seldon (American WBA heavyweight champion of 1995), Bruce Arians, (NFL head coach), Bruce Smith (American NFL Hall of Fame football player), Bruce Wayne aka Batman, Bruce Banner aka The Hulk, and Bruce the shark in “Finding Nemo," and you think Bruce is a pretty-boy feminine name? Absolutely amazing!

bruce oren Says:


I’m not an actor, stuntman or famous musician so that isn't helpful, it never was helpful.
A very popular AM talk show host in Los Angeles periodically repeats a phrase when he talks about gay couples: he refers to a guy with a “wife named Bruce”
I love my parents so I’ll be nice about the way I phrase this: If you want to be a clueless parent then give your child a stupid name that invites the other kids to tease him and invites disrespect as an adult.

eveyalecia Says:


I'm not trying to discount what you're saying, and I'm sorry you've had such an awful experience with your name, but this absolutely blows me away! I mean, my first connotations with the name Bruce are Batman and Bruce Willis, plus I always connect Bruce to the word 'brute.' I just can't imagine anyone considering this a soft or pretty-boy name, at least not overwhelmingly. I also agree with some of the other commenters-- I picture this on a grown man much easier than a little boy. (Also, maybe I'm too young for the gay references, because I've never heard them?) I'm shocked (and, again, sorry to hear) that you've been teased for your name!

Carol Says:


i am surprised that all the comments say it is not a name for a grown man. i feel the exact opposite, i have a hard time imagining a little boy bruce, i think of very manly men, scottish kings and bruce willis. My husband has an uncle Bruce, so we probably won't use it, but i have always loved this name.

peace, love, and nutella Says:


I know two guys named Bruce who have brothers named Chris. Do you think it would be fun to introduce them to each other?

Zelliew Says:


I understand where you are coming from. Parents choose the name but they don't have to live with it.

Map-DORK Says:


If you name your kid Bruce , you are asking to get shot while exiting a theater on a dark rainy night .

The upside though is that your kid will become a billionaire and vigilante.

SunKissedChild Says:


Bruce is the ultimate tough guy name. I find it harsh, and rather unappealing, and it reminds me of the shark named Bruce from "Finding Nemo". It also makes me imagine the stereotypical middle aged Australian man, saying "G'day, I'm Bruce".

bruce oren Says:


Bruce is a soft pretty-sounding name. I've been teased all my life, Brucie, Bruuth, and such. These variations on Bruce are gay references. Don't you think I get tired of hearing about some guy with a "wife named Bruce" If you are not named Bruce you can't understand it. If you are named Bruce and like to talk about actors, rock stars and stuntmen, then you are working hard to prop-up the name. Why would you give your child a name that needs to be built-up?? I've been named Bruce for 54 years, PLEASE don't name your boy Bruce. Give him a boys name like John, Mark, Peter, Bill- these are names that are appropriate for a boy and a grown man. I know my mom thought it was pretty, I just wish my dad had spoken up.

ShannonLim Says:


To me Bruce seems more suitable for a grown man than a little boy. It's a very masculine name for a tough guy :)

emekct Says:


What is the problem with the name Bruce? I think it's perfectly wearable on an adult. Why don't you like it?

bruce oren Says:


You may think it is OK to give your little baby boy a pretty-sounding
name like Bruce, but he won't always be a little baby. Please think
about that. A name like Bruce may be OK if you are a billionaire but most
of us are not. Please do NOT name your child Bruce! It is not appropriate for a grown-up man.