Scots Names


English has been spoken in Scotland for several centuries now. Because of this, it has become Scots, the form spoken in Scotland. As a result, many new names have been coined, not in Gaelic, but in English, but by Scots speakers.

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Women's Names

Name origin meaning notes/other forms
Aileen Germanic Hazlenut Evelyn, Avelina
Ailie Germanic noble Alice, Eilidh
Ailsa Norse Alfsigr's island modern Scottish place name.
Alison Germanic noble dim. of Alice
Alva Scots from a place name meaning 'rock plain" Its popularity may be because of an association with the Latin name Alma meaning "nourishing"-- popularized after the Crimean war to commemorate the Battle of Alma (1854)
Andrina Greek feminine forms of Andrew, from Greek meaning 'Man" Andrewina
Annabel Latin probably from Latin, amabilis, meaning "lovable" Anapul, Anabal
Arabella Latin yielding to prayer? from 'orabilis' could also be an alteration of Annabel(la)
Arline Gaelic? pledge?- name coined by Michael W. Balfe for a 1843 opera Arlene
Bethia Hebrew oath of God derivative of Elizabeth, influenced by the Gaelic Beathag
Bonnie Scots pretty, fine from a Scots vocab word, Bonnie was not used in Scotland until recently, but popular in the USA
Brenda Norse sword, brand this name originated in the Shetland Isles.
Catriona Greek traditionally associated with the word 'pure' Catherine- please pronounce this name like Katrina!
Cathella Scots a blend of Catherine + -ella  
Colina Gaelic young hound- modern fem. of Colin -
Davina Hebrew beloved feminine form of David, originating in Scotland
Dolina Gaelic world-mighty feminine form of Donald
Dona Gaelic world-mighty feminine form of Donald
Donaldina, Donalda Gaelic world-mighty feminine form of Donald
Edana Gaelic ? an Irish saint who came to Scotland. Edinburgh was originally called Dun Edana (Edana's fortress)
Effie Greek I speak well short form of Euphemia
Elspeth Hebrew oath of God Elizabeth
Ena Scots possibly derived from names ending in -ina, or a form of the name Eithne meaning "kernal." Ina
Fenella Gaelic fair shoulders Fionnghuala
Fiona Gaelic white/wine This name was invented in the 16th century by Scottish writer James MacPherson. It is mentioned once in his Ossianic poems, in Fingal- Book 1. However, it is only mentioned once in passing. It was brought into the public spotlight by the 19th century by Scottish author William Sharp, who used "Fiona McLeod" as his pen name. The name probably represents a Latinate feminization of Fionn, meaning "white." However, the word fiona in Gaelic means "wine." It is pronounced FEE uh na, though, not like the name, which is generally pronounced fee-OH-na.
Gillian Gaelic/Hebrew servant of St. John Giolla Iain. This name is pronounced with a hard "g" (as in "goat"), not like Jillian.
Greer Greek watchful originally a surname, from a Gaelic form of Gregory. It was brought into the spotlight as a name by the American movie actress Greer Garson.
Heather English the heather plant often used in the USA after a predominant Scottish landscape feature. It's fairly popular in Scotland as well.
Ina Scots various originally a pet form of -ina names (Donaldina etc) which became a name on its own
Iona Gaelic ? name of a monastic Scottish island
Isla ? ? Name of a Scottish island. This name is pronounced EYE-la. 
Janet Hebrew God is gracious feminine form of John
Jean Hebrew God is gracious This fem of John was limited to Scotland until about the 1800s
Jinty Hebrew God is gracious Nickname for Janet
Kenna Celtic/Pictish? fair one? Ceana, feminine form of Kenneth
Kentigerna Gaelic head lord a saint's name. Also used in honor of St. Kentigern, patron of Glasgow. Kentigern is a Saxon name, which was used as an anglicization of Caointeorn. 
Kirsty Latin via Scandinavian Kirsten, Christine
Lilias Latin the lily flower Lileas
Lorna Gaelic? ? name invented by the Scottish author RD Blackmore. Probably a feminization of Lorne, a Scottish place name. 
Mairi Hebrew fullness, complete Mary, Miriam
Malvina ? ? name invented by Scottish writer James MacPherson
Mariota Hebrew full; complete dim. of Mary
Marsali Latin from the Roman god of war Marcella
Morna Gaelic beloved Muirne
Morven Gaelic big peak? mountains in NW Scotland
Nessa Gaelic/Latin holy An old Irish name. Popularized as a Also a diminutive of Agnes
Nessie Latin holy nick name for Agnes, made famous by the Loch Ness Monster
Osla Norse God-consecrated Island name
Rhona, Rona Norse rough island Island name
Selma ? ? invented by the Scottish writer James MacPherson. This name caught on in Scandinavia, favored by a king who was a fan of MacPherson's Ossianic poems. Because it was used often in Scandinavia, it is often thought to be a Nordic name. 
Senga Gaelic/Latin? slender/holy from an Gaelic word, but its popularity derives from the fact it is Agnes spelled backwards
Sheena Hebrew God is gracious anglicization of Sine, Scottish feminine of John, cognate with Jane.
Shona Hebrew God is gracious anglicization of Seonaid, Scottish fem. Of John, cognate with Joan.

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