Gender: Male Meaning of Ian: "the Lord is gracious" Origin of Ian: Scottish version of John Ian's Popularity in 2019: #81

Ian Origin and Meaning

The name Ian is a boy's name of Scottish origin meaning "the Lord is gracious".

Ian is Scottish form of John, derived from the Hebrew name Yohanan. It is an Anglicization of the Scottish Gaelic Iain, which is also a viable spelling. Ian was introduced to Americans by Ian Fleming, creator of James Bond.

Ian was rather late making inroads on our shores—it was already the seventh most popular name in England in 1975. It’s been on a steady path in the Top 100 ever since the introduction of James Bond, thanks to its jaunty charm. Today, Ian flies in formation with fellow classic British RAF pilot names, like Derek and Miles and Colin, all now certified U.S. citizens, packing considerable punch and panache into its three short letters. So though it may not be the newest name on the block, it's still a recommended choice.

Notable namesakes include actor Ian McKellan and novelist Ian McEwan. Actor Ian Ziering pronounces his name EYE-an, rather than the traditional EE-an.

16 names similar to Ian

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Rank in US: #81

- this week

Famous People Named Ian

Pop Culture References for the name Ian

Iann, Iaian, Ean, Eann, Eion, Eon, Iaian, Iain, Iann, Ion


ParanoidAndroid Says:


A lot of people loathe Ian, but I honestly don’t understand why. Ian reminds me of an elderly Irish or Scottish man who spends his day reading literature and going to the pub once in a while.

TechnoKitten Says:


my favorite 3 letter names after Lea and Ria.

paulapuddephatt Says:


I say it the first way. I think most people do, but could be wrong.

paulapuddephatt Says:


Quite nice, was overused for my own generation but doesn't seem as popular nowadays for babies and children, at least not here in the UK, sounds better now that it is less common

maibritt Says:


is it pronounced Ee-yin or Ai-yen? I have heard Ee-yin a lot of times, ,but I swear that someone I used to know was called Ai-yen (like with the beginning of Ivy).

hufflepuff Says:


Even though this name was popular in 1975, something about it feels distinctly modern. I really like Ian.

EleanorAll1 Says:


I loved this name when I was in elementary school and I still really like it.

Becca Fäye Says:


My 6 month old son's name 😊 I call him ianny meany for a nickname. I think it's such a beautiful, romantic yet handsome and masculine name, kind of sing-songy the way the syllables fluctuate.

Zelliew Says:


Simple & straight forward name

itsybitsyspider Says:


This is my name and my favorite part of it is that it is practically impossible to coin a nickname off of it, so I can go around giving people nicknames without fear of getting one back.

sarah Says:


I know an Ian. He hates it, everybody always called him "peein Ian"

onlythingbetterthanhairspray Says:


Ian is my brother Daniel's middle name and I love it. I'd probably use it if my parents hadn't used it for him.

rabia_chrisden Says:


although this name is super popular I still like it. I usually don't care too much for really popular names but this one is great.