Ireland Names

A comprehensive guide to Irish Names. All you need to know about the names commonly associated with Ireland.

Discover the origins and meanings of Irish baby names. Traditional, Old, Celtic first, surnames and family names. Find out about the origins of your family surname or use the dictionary to discover a cool, traditional, unusual or unique Celtic or Irish name for your baby!

Do you know that it is traditional in Ireland to name the first born son after their paternal grandfather (father's father) or that the first born daughter is named after their maternal grandmother (motherís mother)? Discover a huge range of facts about Irish names.

Irish - Surnames
Irish surnames are usually Patronymic in etymology. Patronymic means that the name is derived from the given name of the persons parent or ancestor, usually their father or grandfather but sometimes the name can be derived from the mother or grandmother. Etymology is defined as the science which relates to the history of words. It involves the significance of words, tracing out their origin and how the meaning and form of words have changed over time.

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Female Irish Naming Conventions
Traditionally the following protocol was used to name female members of the family but more often nowadays, the name is used as a middle name instead of a first name:

  • The First born daughter is named after the maternal grandmother (motherís mother)

  • The Second daughter is named after the paternal grandmother (fatherís mother)

  • The Third daughter is named after the mother

  • The Fourth daughter is named after her motherís oldest sister (Aunt)

  • Subsequent female children can be named as the parent pleases!

 

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Male Irish Naming Conventions
Traditionally the following protocol was used to name male members of the family but more often nowadays, the name is used as a middle name instead of a first name:

  • The First born son is named after the paternal grandfather (father's father)

  • The Second son is named after the maternal grandfather (mother's father)

  • The Third son is named after the father

  • The Fourth son is named after her father's oldest brother (Uncle)

  • Subsequent male children can be named as the parent pleases!

Irish Names that start with....
We have provided a huge selection of Irish names for boys and girls. Perhaps you are looking for a name that starts with a particular letter? Check out our baby name dictionary, lots of ideas for an unusual and unique name for the new addition to your family. Remember the name you choose is for life! A huge decision to make so think carefully. Will the name be shortened? How does it sound with your surname? Does the initial letter spell something? It is vital to check this, how does the initial letter read next to the surname? This naming format is often used for email addresses?

Irish Names - Pronunciation
Can you pronounce the name properly? Will the child's teacher be able to read it? Think of all those occasions in your life where your name is called out, doctors surgeries, dentists etc. Will people struggle to pronounce the name? Will your child spend their entire life trying to explain how their name is pronounced?

Consider the beautiful and popular Irish girls name Caoimhe for example. It is pronounced 'Kee-Va', how many people will be able to guess that outside of Ireland? Many people choose traditional Irish names such as Caitlin, pronounced 'Kate Lyn' and use the more universally understood spelling of Katelyn? A great way to choose a traditional Irish name but make it easier for people to read and save your child the embarrassment of explaining how the name is pronounced.

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