ling, ASH leeng
word for 'dream, vision'. It is also a type of poem where Ireland
is portrayed as a beautiful girl in peril. ssIt's first use as a name came in Gaelic Revival (late
|Aislynn, Azlin, Acelin, Icelynn etc.
||Variety of ways, usually AZE lin, ACE lin or ICE lin
||In the USA, this name has been cropping up since the dawn of the 21st century. It is a phonetic mispronunciation of the name Aislinn /ASH lin/. The spellings are determined by how the person interpreted Aislinn to be pronounced in English.
the Irish term of affection a leanbh ('my child'), this name
is also used as a feminine form of Alan.
||an na LIV ee a
||coined by author James Joyce, this name is based on Abha Life, the Irish name of the River Liffey that runs through Dublin.
a blend of the popular name Ashley and popular suffix -lyn. Some regard
this as an anglicization of Aislinn/Aisling (see also), but it is
probably an independent coinage.
Anglicization used for Breandán sometimes, this name actually comes
from the English meaning "beacon-fire hill."
feminine of the name surname Brennan, used as a first name.
ON a, Bree AN a
invention as a feminine of Brian. Used mainly in the USA. The name
Briana, pronounced BREE uh na, was coined by Edmund Spenser for his
16th century book the Faerie Queen.
English phonetic pronunciation of the Irish name Caitlín, this name
is extremely popular in the USA and Australia.
ul, CASH lin, CASH leen
Caiseal and Caislín in Irish, these are place names in Ireland meaning
"Castle" and "little castle."
a, CARE a
Irish word for 'friend,' this name has been gaining in popularity.
It's also the Italian word for 'dear.'
||The Irish vocabulary word for "music," this was used as a name by Edele Lynch a musician in the band B*Witched.
feminine of the name Ciarán. Elaboration of the name Ciar. In the
USA, it is also sometimes an alternate spelling of Sierra, or pronounced
see-ARE-a, a name of a popular fragrance of perfume. The name of the
fragrance was coined after Ceres, the Roman goddess of the harvest.
name of a river in Tipperary, 1st used as a name by the Marquis of
Waterford for his daughter. Popular in Ireland ever since.
the Irish word cailín meaning 'girl,' this word was coined
as a name for an American film star in the 1920's. It is not used
in Ireland today, but was very popular in the USA in past decades.
It is also the slang term for an Irish woman in Britain, and used
as a slang term sometimes for a country woman in Ireland.
a (not Day-na-that's a whole different name)
modern form of the name of the Celtic goddess Anu. This name has been
popularized recently by the Northern Irish singer Dana (b. Rosemary
||This is an English name that came to Ireland in the 16th century. It became associated with Ireland thanks to the 1959 Disney film Darby O'Gill and the Little People and the books it was based on by British author Herminie Templeton Kavanagh (1861-1933)
is a form of the Irish word duan, meaning "poem" or "song."
is a recent coinage based on the word ean, meaning "bird".
Ean+ ín makes this name mean "little bird."
name is probably just a more "Irish" spelling of the Greek name Irene,
meaning "peace." However, it could also be thought to be a compound
of Éire ("Ireland") and the suffix ín ("een", a diminutive
name for Ireland. Used mostly in the USA, Canada and Australia, however,
it is gaining popularity in Ireland and other English-speaking countries.
word for 'ring,' used after Gaelic Revival. A circular brooch was
traditionally worn during this period to show the wearer was an active
Irish speaker. This gave the name an extra dimension.
is probably the name I get e-mails about the most! Many consider this
name "quintessentially Irish." However, it was actually the invention
of the 18th-century Scottish author, James MacPherson. He coined this
name as a feminine form of the legendary name Fionn. To do this, he
stuck the common Latinate ending -a onto the name Fionn, and dropped
one "n". In Gaelic, unlike Latin (and other European languages), names
do not become feminine simply by adding "a." In fact, there were already
in existence a few feminine forms of Fionn: Fionnseach, Fionnait and
Fionnacht. Coincidentally, the word fiona, pronounced FEE uh
na, is the modern Scottish Gaelic word for "wine" (coming from the
Latin vineus, meaning "vine") Fiona became popular in Scotland
and England in the late 19th century as a result of the author William
Sharpe using the pen name Fiona MacLeod.
the Irish word for 'truth,' this name was also coined during the Gaelic
||Probably a spelling of Gale/Gail that was influenced by the word Gael, the Celtic tribe from which the irish are descended, according to legend.
is the Latin vocabulary word for 'glory.' It was first used as a name
in 1898 by the Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw for his play You
Never Can Tell.
name was coined by William Shakespeare, for his play Cymbaline.
It is a misspelling, or misrepresentation of a Celtic name, recorded
as Innogen. Perhaps it comes from the Irish Gaelic word inighean
||Juno was used as an anglicization of Úna at one point; was used by Sean O'Casey for his play Juno and the Paycock.
||joo VER na, yoo VER na
||from a Latin name for Ireland, this name was used sparingly after the Gaelic Revival in the late 1800s.
||Kayla is not actually an Irish name, but a lot of baby name books and websites list it as such. It is sometimes listed as a short form of McKayla, which is reported to be "the Irish form of Michaela"-- as someone who has been researching names for 3+ decades, this makes me really sad. Kayla is a 20th century invention. Though it has been around since at least the 1940s, it didn't gain popularity until the 1980s with the character of Kayla Brady on the US soap opera Days of Our Lives. Kayla is most likely a modern invention, adding -la to the name Kay. McKayla is a respelling of Michaela that popped up in the late 20th century following the popularity of the names Mackenzie and Kayla.
is not derived from the Irish word céilí, as some people think,
although this assumption has probably contributed to the name's popularity.
It is more likely a modern combination of the names Kay and Lee, based
on popular names like Hayley and Kayla. You can also find the spellings
Kayleigh, Cailey, Caeli, Keighli...we've counted about 57 different
possible spellings for this name.
|Kaylin, Kailyn, Calen, Caelon etc.
This name was coined in the mid-late 20th century, probably as a variant of Katelyn. Baby name books often list it as Irish, but it's basically a made-up name. Although the Irish word for "girl" (see Colleen) is cailín, that probably is more a coincidence that has contributed to the popularity of the name, rather than the origin. In spellings like Kaylon, Kaelan etc. it is often found on boys, probably as a variant of Jaylin, Kaden etc... 2-syllable names ending with -n with a long A sound are very "in" right now.
||from an Irish surname meaning "slender."
ree, KAIR ee
comes from Ciarraí, the name of an Irish county. The original name
comes from ciar, the Irish word for "black."
though to be an anglicization of the man's name Cadhla, this name
is more likely to have been coined as a feminine form of Kyle, based
on the popularity of other K sounding names such as Kayla and Kylie.
or KY ull
could come either from the Gaelic coill meaning "woods", or
a Scottish place name meaning "narrow." This name is more common in
Scotland, where is is also a place name and a surname, than in Ireland.
||Australians will tell you this is from an aboriginal word meaning "boomerang." Others swear this is an Irish name. It can be thought of as a feminine form of Kyle, or a form of the Irish surname Ó Cadhla, which comes from a name meaning "graceful." It usually is anglicized Kiely or Kiley in that context, though.
||the use of the Irish word liath meaning "grey" as a name.
Irish vocabulary word for 'brightness, radiance,' Róisín McAliskey
used this name for her daughter.
| McKenna, Kenna
name is common in the USA. It's popularity stems from the fact that
it sounds a bit like the popular Hebrew derived name Michaela, often
misspelled McKayla, and the popular Scottish surname name Mackenzie.
McKenna is a surname meaning 'son of Cionnaith' [name of disputed origin]. This also
helps it catch the trend of giving children surnames as first names.
Also spelled Makenna, Mckenna, Mackenna etc.
|McKinley, Kinley, McKenley, Kenley
||muh KIN lee, KEN lee etc.
||Like McKenna, this name came to popularity in the late 20th century, following on the heels of names like Mackenzie and Michaela. McKinley is usually a Scottish anglicization of Mac Fhionnlaoich, but can also be an anglicization of the Irish Mac an Leagha ("doctor"). (Mc)Kenley can be a form of this, but also may be a form of Ó Cinnfhaolaidh (ceann "head" + faol "wolf), Ó Conghaile ("brave or fierce as a hound/wolf") or Ó Coingheallaigh ("faithful to pledges/hostages").
in, MAY gun, MEE gun
name Megan is originally a Welsh pet form of Margaret. It has been
mistaken as an Irish name ever since the Australian author Colleen
McCullough used Meghann for her Irish main character in the novel The
Thorn Birds. Megan is sometimes 'Irishized' with the spellings
Meaghan, Meeghan etc. For those who insist that Megan is Irish, and
there are many militant pro-Irish-Megan Irish-Americans out there,
There is an obscure Irish surname, Meegan. However, this name
has usually been found as Meehan in this century. Megan and friends
have been very popular in the USA since the 1970s, and are gaining popularity in the UK, Australia & Ireland.
da, NEE la
feminine forms of the name Neil
word for 'daisy.' It was sometimes used as a pet form of Nora.
Because of this, Nora is sometimes anglicized "Daisy."
word for "Christmas." This name has been very popular in this century
for Irish girls and boys. It is often translated as Noel.
IN thee a
name invented by George Bernard Shaw for his 1929 play the Apple
tawn, RAYL teen
coinage based on réal, the Irish word for 'star.' This name
would mean 'little star.' Equivalent of the Latin Stella.
|Riley, Rylee, Reilly
||This is confusing two surnames; the English Riley, which means "rye field" and the Irish Ó Raghaillaigh, which has an unknown meaning. The latter is more often anglicized Reilly.
sha, sometimes SAYR sha
word for 'freedom.' This has become popular in Ireland in recent years.
Shauna, Shawna, Shanna
a, SHAUN a
feminine forms of Seán. Shauna is the most popular spelling in Ireland.
of the name Seán.
river in SW Ireland and a surname, as well as Ireland's international
airport, this name has been popular for both boys and girls in the
USA, Britain and Canada for some time. It's been getting very popular
in Ireland in recent years for both girls and boys.
is a vocabulary word meaning "sprite", "changeling" and is also the
term for a precocious child. It has been used in recent years for
girls in Ireland.
in, STEH rin
name was created by the novelist Beatrice Coogan in her novel The
Big Wind. It is a shortened form of the phrase "Blawna Stherrim,"
(In Irish, Bláthna Shteirm ) which means 'flower of the storm.'
Thanks to J.F. Klein of the Netherlands for bringing this name to
||TAR a, TARE a
||Although the Hill of Tara is the traditional Seat of Kings in Ireland, Tara was not widely used as a name until the 20th century. It was occasionally found on men in Ireland. In the 1940s it became more popular for girls in the USA with the rise of the movie Gone With The Wind in which the plantation is named Tara.
name invented by actors Tyrone Power and Linda Christian for their
daughter. This name is also thought of as an American elaboration
of the name Tara.
name invented by Irish satirist Jonathan Swift in honor of Esther
Vanhomrigh, a woman with whom his connection is not entirely clear.