"the little hero"

Sweeney Origin and Meaning

The name Sweeney is both a boy's name and a girl's name of Irish origin meaning "the little hero".
The double 'e' gives this Celtic surname a genial sound. It derives from an old Irish name — Suibhne (SHEEV-ne) that was borne by several early saints and kings, including, unfortunately, one known as Mad Sweeney who spent his life living in trees and composing nature poetry. Another possible drawback is the association with Sweeney Todd, the bloodthirsty butcher of Sondheim stage-musical fame.

But if you can put all that aside, Sweeney makes a cheery choice.

20 Names Similar to Sweeney

These 20 names were selected by our users that were looking for other names like Sweeney.

Famous People Named Sweeney

  • Sweeney Jerome YoungAustralian actor
  • David "Sweeney" SchrinerRussian,Canadian ice hockey player

Sweeney in Pop Culture

  • Sweeney Toddthe Demon Barber of Fleet Street, British folk figure and subject of musical and film "Sweeney Todd"
  • Mad Sweeney aka Suibhne mac Colmainking of the Dál nAraidi, driven insane by St. Ronan's curse, subject of the Irish tale The Buile Shuibhne or Mad Sweeney
  • Sweeneymain character in "Sweeney Agonistes" by T.S. Eliot, based on Mad Sweeney
  • Sweeneycharacter in the novel At Swim,Two,Birds by Flann O'Brien, based on Mad Sweeney
  • "The Sweeney" TV series named after Sweeney Todd, Cockney rhyming slang for "flying squad"