Why are Irish names written so crazy?

Irish names - meaning & origin

Irish names sound like the proud Celtic past, like Celtic legends and myths that are still alive today on the Emerald Isle. And here in Central Europe, Irish names like Saoirse or Aiofe are anything but easy to think of, as the spelling has little in common with the pronunciation in our eyes. Nevertheless, or perhaps because of this, we are fascinated by these strange names. Here we have put together beautiful Irish boy names and girl names and also tell you what they mean.

The most popular Irish first names

With the Irish themselves, these first names have been particularly popular for girls and boys in the past year.

  1. Emily & Jack
  2. Emma & James
  3. Amelia & Daniel
  4. Grace & Conor
  5. Sophie & Sean

Beautiful Irish boy names and their meanings

Irish names for boys

Conor (spoken: konna)

Translated, “Conor” means “dog lover”. The name probably goes back to Conchobhar MacNessa, who was once King of Ulster.

Oisin (spoken: oschin)

Means “little deer”. In Celtic mythology, Oisin was the son of the goddess Sive and the famous warrior Fionn MacCool. A dark magician turned the goddess into a doe. As such, she raised her son in the forest for seven years. When the father, Fionn, found him while hunting, he recognized his son and gave him his name.

Sean (spoken: schoon - with an open "o")

Sean means “God is gracious”. At the same time, the name also means “old” or “wise”.

Padraig (spoken: porous - with an open "o")

Padraig is the Irish version of the Latin name "Patrizius". This means: “born nobly”.

Liam (spoken: lijam)

Liam is the short version of the Irish name Uilliam. This in turn probably comes from the Franconian name Willahelm. This and also Liam mean “brave warrior” or “determined protector”.

Cian (spoken: kijan)

Cian means “old” or “permanent”. According to legend, Cian was the son-in-law of Brian Boru - the legendary Irish high king. He and Cian were killed in the Battle of Clontarf. Today Clontarf is part of Dublin.

Cillian (spoken: kiljan)

Cillian has several meanings. The name stands for “war” or “dispute”, but also for a “clever, level-headed person”. The word “cille” found in Cillian also means “associated with the Church”. That is why the name is often associated with “monastery” or “church”.

Rian (spoken: rijan)

Rian means “little king”. The Irish name for the king is “rí”. Rian is thus the diminutive of it.

Fionn or Finn (spoken: fjonn or finn)

The meanings of these two names are “clear”, “bright” or “prudent”. Properties that also apply to the mythical Fionn MacCool who plays a central role in Irish mythology. He was the leader of the warrior group called “The Fianna”. He was widely known for being brave, wise, generous, and handsome.

Eoin (spoken: owen with a soft “w”)

Eoin means “young”.

Callum (spoken: kalum with an open "u")

Callum is the Gaelic version of the Latin “columba”. That means “pigeon”.

Aodhán (spoken: ajdan)

Or Aidan, which is the English version of the name, means “little fiery one”. In the name is the old Irish word for “fire” “aed”.

Oscar (spoken: oska)

Oscar means “friend of the stag”. In the name are the two Gaelic words “o”, which means “deer” and “cara”, which means “friend”. In Irish mythology there is a well-known name representative: Oscar was the son of the poet Oisin and the grandson of the famous hero Finn MacCools.

Ronan (spoken: ronan)

Ronan appears to have been a very popular name in Irish history. A total of 12 saints bore this name, as well as a former king of Leinster. The name has its origin in the Gaelic word “ron”, which means “seal”. Ronan is the diminutive and therefore means “little seal”.

Tadhg (spoken: tige)

The meaning of this Irish name is 'poet' or 'bard'. A King of Connacht bore this name in the 11th century.

Cathal (spoken: kahal)

Cathal means "strong and mighty in battle". The name is made up of the two Gaelic words “cath” (fight or battle) and “val” (rule).

Beautiful Irish girl names and their meanings

Irish names for girls

Aoife (spoken: ie-fa)

The name Aoife has its origin in the Gaelic word “aoibh”. This means “beauty” or “joy”. So the name stands for a beautiful, radiant, happy woman. In Irish mythology, Aoife is known as the strongest female warrior in the world.

Eimear (spoken: ie-mur)

Eimear means "nimble" or "quick". This name is the wife of the legendary warrior Cuchulainn in Irish mythology.

Saoirse (spoken: ser-scha)

This name means "freedom" or "independence". This name is quite young and has only been given to girls in Ireland since the 1920s. A well-known representative is the Irish actress Saoirse Ronan.

Caoimhe (spoken: kie-wa)

The name comes from the Gaelic word “caomh”. This has the meaning of “valuable”, “beautiful” or “gentle”.

Ciara (spoken: kie-ra)

Ciara is the feminine form of the Gaelic name “Ciaran”. This has its origin from the Gaelic word “ciar”. This means “dark” and refers to dark hair or eyes, for example.

Roisin (spoken: ro-seemed)

Roisin is a popular Irish girl name known in Ireland since the 16th century. It means “little rose”.

Aisling (spoken: asch-ling)

This name means “dream” or “vision” in Gaelic. It comes from the word “aislinge” and is also the name for a certain type of Irish poetry of the 17th century.

Cara (spoken: kara)

Cara means “friend” in Gaelic.

Niamh (spoken: niev)

The name Niamh has several meanings. It stands for “brightness” or “shine”. There is also a well-known representative of this name in Irish mythology - Niamh, the daughter of the sea god and lover of the poet Oisin. She lived in Tir-na-nOg - the land of eternal youth and beauty.

Eabha (spoken: ey-wa)

This name is the Irish form of "Eve". Eabha means “life” or “mother of all life”.

Aoibhinn (spoken: ie-wan)

This name means "shine" or "radiant beauty". Aoibhinn was a very popular name for Irish princesses.

Sadhbh (spoken: seiv)

Sadhbh means “wise”, “lovely” or “sweet”.

Aine (spoken: anje)

This Irish name has its origin in the word “aine”. This means “splendor” or “charisma”. According to an Irish legend, Aine was the queen of the fairies and mistress of the Irish hero Fionn MacCool.

Fiadh (spoken: fieja)

Fiadh is an old Irish word and means “wild” and “free”.