Irish boy names are hugely inspired by native cultures and histories. Many stepped out from mythologies and tales, while others developed from old-age surnames of major clans or families. They have stood the test of time and are a great way to honor one’s Irish roots.
Yet, if the charm of Irish boy names draws you, there’s no need to be of Irish descent to pick one for your newborn. The US alone has a long-standing affection for Irish boy names. There are so many Brians, Seans, and Ryans in this country.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has recently also seen the resurgence of names like Liam, Aiden, Finn, or Declan. That’s enough for some quick mentions; let’s dive right into the details.
Top Classic Irish Boy Names
Classic names are always a good starting point for your baby name roster. They are well-loved, normally steeped in history, and come with inspiring associations. Whether you’re a traditional type or want to play it safe, these traditional masculine names will serve you well!
Alaois is an Irish version of “Aloysius” derived from the French name “Louis”. Meaning “famous in war”, this name choice will imbue strength and courage in your little bundle of joy. Alaois is of irregular use, so he will likely stand out.
Of Irish and Breton origin, Brian means “high”, “noble”, “strong”, or “exalted one”. The most notable bearer of this name is Brian Boru. He was the last High King of Ireland, who drove the Vikings out of the country.
Brian is no stranger in the US and other English-speaking countries thanks to its simple, lovely pronunciation. The name was the 288th most chosen in the states in 2021.
Translating to “sturdy shoe”, Brogan is flexible enough to go as a girl or boy name. The name projects strength and reliability, two amazing traits that many hope their offspring will grow up with.
Cormac is an ancient Irish name, interpreted as “son of the charioteer” or sometimes simply “charioteer”. It conjures up the images of a man skilfully controlling the chariot during the battles. In addition, Cormac means “crow” and “raven” in ancient Celtic.
The name is also rich in history. It was borne by the 3rd century High King of Ireland, Cormac Mac Airt, whose exploits are told in many Irish tales and stories.
Hailing from either the Gaelic or Irish language, Daithi indicates “swiftness” or “nimbleness”. If you envision your little boy running around, full of joy and energy, Daithi is a lovely choice.
Although not etymologically related to the Hebrew “David”, Daithi is sometimes used as its Irish equivalent.
This old-fashioned male title was originally a place name in Ireland. It points to Deas-mhhumhan and means “south Munster”.
It was also the name of an ancient kingdom in southwestern Ireland – the Kingdom of Desmond (flourishing between 1118 and 1596). As per the SSA chart, Desmond has been in the top 500 male names since the mid-1970s.
American-born Desmond Doss was the only conscious objector to earn the Medal of Honor for his service in World War II.
This masculine name means “free from envy”. Diarmuid boasts a romantic touch if that’s one thing you’re looking for in a name. It’s tied to the famous Irish love triangle story – the legend of Diarmuid, Gráinne, and Fionn.
Don’t let its unusual appearance fool you! Eoghan can be easily pronounced as “O-əwn”, pretty much in the same way as “Owen”.
Eoghan can be interpreted as “born of the yew tree”, “youth”, or “noble born”. This name is borne by one son of Niall of the Nine Hostages – a legendary Irish king. Famous Irish namesakes include pop singer/footballer Eoghan Quigg and former rugby player Eoghan Hickey.
“Evergood”, “constant”, and “beauty” are the popular definitions of this name. Felim was shared by many medieval kings in Ireland, one of whom was also a bishop. For a challenge, you might want to consider its variant, Feidlimid – the title of three ancient kings of Munster.
This Irish diminutive of “Fiontan” represents “little fair one” or “white fire”. Irish legend has it that a man called Fintan mac Bóchra was the only survivor of the Great Flood. So, it’s suitable for a baby who has fought for his life during hard labor.
Kevin rolls off the tongue and is not confusing for writing down. Derived from the Irish “Caoimhín”, it similarly means “handsome”. The first renowned Kevin is perhaps the 7th-century Saint Kevin. In the US, Kevin enjoyed a long run in the top 100 from 1949-2016.
Kevin Izod O’Doherty – politician and Young Irelander – was among the famous early bearers of this name. Later, Irish politician Kevin O’Higgins and footballer Kevin Doyle also share this name.
American actor Kevin McCarthy, who starred in iconic films such as “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and “Death of a Salesman”, also helped spread the name to the English-speaking world.
Oisin’s got the lovely meaning of “little deer”. Thus, it can be a nice way to evoke love for nature in your new boy. The name sits firmly in Irish mythology as Oisin was the son of the legendary Fionn mac Cumhaill. It is widely used in its homeland but rarely unheard of in the US.
Stemming from the Gaelic elements “os” for “deer” and “cara” for “friend”, Oscar means “friend of deer”. Besides this prevailing definition, Oscar can also translate to “God’s spear” and “champion warrior”.
Oscar was the son of the poet Oisin and the grandson of the illustrious warrior Fionn mac Cumhaill. So, it’s a nice way to honor your Irish heritage.
Owen is among the Irish names that successfully migrated to the US. It impressively nailed the 22nd place on the SSA’s chart in 2021. Yet, on this side of the pond, Owen is also a favorite in Wales, Scotland, and England.
This masculine name comes from the medieval name “Owain”, meaning “young warrior”, “noble”, and “well-born”. Back in the 6th century, Owain mab Urien, the son of Urien Rheged, fought alongside his father in the battles against the Angles of Bernicia.
A quintessentially Irish name, Patrick derives from the Latin “patricius”. It is commonly interpreted as “noble”, “patrician”, or “nobleman”.
Patrick takes on a huge Irish identity, as it was the name of the patron saint of Ireland. Saint Patrick was among the missionaries to bring Christianity to the nation. According to the SSA data, Patrick is also well-loved by US parents, ranking 214th in 2021.
Top Common Irish Boy Names
Irish boy names are having a moment on both sides of the Atlantic. In the US, Liam opened the way for more of its Irish fellows as the number one boy name on the SSA’s chart. If you’re someone fond of trending things, here are the most popular Irish monikers right now.
Aidan is a derivation of “Aodhán”, a pet form of “Aodh”. With the etymology connected to the Celtic God of the sun, the modern “Aidan” means “little fire” or “the fiery one”.
While its brother “Aiden” is more popular in the US, Irish parents like “Aidan” better. It was solidly in the top 100 most-used boy names in Ireland.
There are a couple of different meanings of this name, including “church”, “war strife”, and “bring-headed”. Cillian can be regarded as a spiritual name as it is the name of a 7th-century Irish saint.
It’s currently a popular name in its native Ireland. However, the name started to draw overseas attention, too. In America, it cracked into the top 1000 in 2020. It can be partially thanks to the versatile Irish actor Cillian Murphy.
This classic Irish name emerges from the Irish Gaelic name “Conchobhar”. It’s believed to root in “Conchobar mac Nessa” – the title of a legendary king of Ulster (who happens to be born on the same day as Christ).
Conor is interpreted as the “lover of hounds/wolves”. The name is commonly used in its homeland and gained notable traction in the US and Great Britain.
Declan has two widely-accepted meanings: “man of prayer” and “full of goodness”. The former is inspired by Saint Declan. This early Irish saint was one of the first missionaries to bring Christianity to Ireland, even before Saint Patrick.
Meanwhile, two Gaelic elements, “Deagh” for “good” or “excellence” and “lán” for “full”, led to the translation “full of goodness”.
Finn is a derivative of the Irish “Fionn”, meaning “fair” or “white”. Both belong to the intrepid Irish mythological hero, Fionn mac Cuumhaill, also known as Finn MacCool.
That said, the energetic and charming Finn performs better than its cousin in the US. It stands at number 184 on the popularity chart in 2021. Fionn, however, is hardly heard in the States.
Liam comes with mighty definitions – “protector” and “strong-willed warrior”. The name is thought to be a diminutive of “Uilliam” or the old Germanic “William”.
This short form of William is not only popular in Ireland and the UK, but it has earned enormous fame this side of the Atlantic. For five years straight from 2017, it was the number one choice of American parents.
Liam was once confined to Irish descent, but now it’s used inter-culturally. Some well-known Liams include One Direction’s Liam Payne, Oasis member Liam Gallagher, and Irish actor Liam Neeson.
Searching for something with a dash of regalness? Then, Rian, meaning “little king”, is worth considering.
Rian (its original form, “Rían”) won’t trip you up with its pronunciation like many Irish monikers. The name has yet to gain recognition in the US (much less common than its closest cousin, “Ryan”). Yet, it was the 5th most used name back in its motherland in 2021.
Tadhg boasts a bold Irish image and a somewhat baffling pronunciation that many Irish names come with. The name should be pronounced “tie-g” and means “poet” or “storyteller”.
Many Irish ancient kings and princes were given this name, so the name boasts a royal touch. At one point in the past, Tadhg was so common that it appeared in the phrases like “Tadhg a mhargaidh” (“Tadhg of the market”, meaning an average man).
In 2021, Tadhg ranked 10th in Ireland, a notable jump from the 18th in the previous year.
Pick These Strong Irish Boy Names For Your Babies!
Are you searching for a name that can remind your boy of their inner strength? Many Irish names directly indicate strength, while some others were proudly borne by legendary Kings and warriors of the country.
This friendly moniker comes from the Irish Gaelic Cathasaigh/Cathaiseach. It can mean “watchful”, “vigilant”, or “brave in battle”. The brave man Casey Jones has lived up to this name. This railroader sacrificed his own life to save his passengers by stopping a collision in 1900.
Cathal, pronounced as “caa-hill” without the “t”, means “battle rule”. The meaning signifies a great and mighty warrior and leader. It was also shared by an ancient Irish saint and is frequently used in modern Ireland.
Cathal is not something you commonly hear in the US. However, it has the potential to venture to the states, like its cousins Aidan or Declan did.
The Irish name Connell is an anglicized version of the Gaelic surname “O’Conaill”. The meaning is kept intact as the original, which is “strong as a wolf”.
Connell is a prominent name in ancient Irish history, borne by three distinct clans in Connacht, Munster, and Ulster. Your little one will also share this name with an ancient Irish king, Daniel O’Connell.
This Irish boy’s name is traced back to ancient roots. It supposedly comes from “Dumno-ualos” – a Proto-Celtic word. And guess what? The Proto-Celtic language existed even before the Irish language was built.
This classic name has a mighty definition – “ruler of the world”. Harry Potter fans might be familiar with the pure-blood wizard Bill Weasley. The character is portrayed by the down-to-earth Irish actor Domhnall Gleeson. He was in the Star Wars sequel cast, too.
This old-school name has recently enjoyed a rise in popularity. It was the 53rd most-used name in Ireland in 2021.
Donnacha comes with a hue like many traditional Irish names in this list. The interpretation is “brown-haired warrior”. Several kings and rulers in Ireland and Scotland were given this name.
The most notable one should be the High King of Ireland, Donnchad mac Briain. He was the son of Brian Boru and ruled in the 11th century.
Originating in Scotland, Ireland, and the Isle of Man, this quirky yet attractive name means “the strong one”, “man of force”, or “virility”.
In folklore, Prince Fergus Mac Eirc set sail from the Irish coast to found the kingdom of Argyll in Scotland. So, the name and this tale act as a bridge between Ireland and Scotland. Therefore, Fergus is a great choice for a family with both heritages.
There are two possible roots of Ferris. One is the Irish name “Fergus” for “strong man”; the other is the English surname “Ferrers” for “ironworkers”. Either way, “Ferris” is a name that comes with strength. You’ll love the retro vibe and the stylish S-ending, too.
As an Irish variation of “Gerard”, Garret can be interpreted as “spear strength” or “bold spear”. A spear is a weapon symbolizing determination and focus, too.
Gerald is a Germanic name brought to England during the Norman Conquest in the 11th century. It has developed many iterations, including Garret and Garrett.
Lorcan is meant for fearless and adventurous souls as it means “little fierce one”. It was also mentioned in Irish history as the name of the grandfather Brian Boru – the high king of Ireland. Lorcan is also a Harry Potter character name.
The name “Raymond” was carried to Ireland by the Norman invader Raymond Fitzgerald or Raymond Le Gros in the 12th century. Yet, it developed into several spelling iterations; Redmond is among them.
Interpreted as “wise protector”, this Irish name represents physical and intellectual strength.
Derived from the Irish “ruadh”, Rory means “red king” and gives off strength and determination.
There is also an Irish Gaelic spelling of this name – Ruaidhrí, which sounds even more Irish. Ruairí Ó Conchúir, also known as Rory O’Connor, was the last High King of Ireland in the 1100s.
This gender-neutral name comes from the surname “Ó Sluaghadháin”. Translating to “warrior” or “raider”, Sloan was shared by some of the greatest ancient warriors and nobles in Irish history.
Top Irish Boy Names Stepping Out Of Mythology
Mythologies are the building stones of Irish culture. Names that were inspired by them also contribute to part of the baby’s identity. Or, at least, your son will have interesting stories to tell others about his name.
This one hails from the Old Irish word “Oíngus” meaning “one choice”. Aengus was the god of youth and love. He overcame many obstacles, including becoming a swan, to win a girl’s heart. This tale was woven into Irish mythology and a poem by William Butler Yeats.
This neutral-gender Irish moniker can mean “noble”, “bright”, or “rock”. Whether you wish your kid to be as steadfast as a rock or never dim their inner light, Ailbhe can reflect both.
Interestingly, Ailbhe first started as the name of a female warrior – Ailbhe Gruadbrecc. Later, there was a sixth-century male saint sharing it. So, parents can use it for any of the sexes.
Aodh should be pronounced as “Ay” or “Ee”, depending on where you’re in Ireland. The name comes from Scottish Gaelic or Old Irish. Sharing the name with a Celtic sun god will likely excite and empower your kid.
The name means “fire” and was widely adopted in early Scotland. Aidan and Aiden are the modern variants of this name.
The meaning of Conall is “strong wolf”, so it’s a cool name representing one of the most majestic creatures in the wilderness.
If your boy bears this name, he’ll surely be inspired by Conall Cearnach, a 1st-century knight. He was constantly mentioned in the Fenian tales, lauded for having fought to avenge his foster brother’s death.
Conall gained marked traction abroad after the series Normal People by Sally Rooney was aired in 2020.
While Darragh is neutral-gender, it’s significantly more common for boys. This Irish title translates to “oak tree” and “dark oak”. It boasts a rugged charm that many nature-loving parents will love.
Darragh is supposedly linked to Dagda – a Celtic/Irish God of the underworld. This deity oversaw many aspects of humankind, from life, death, and seasons to agriculture.
Etymologically, Fionn is a spelling alternative to “Finn” and means “white”, “fair”, or “fair hair”.
This Irish boy’s name is tied to the legendary Irish warrior Fionn mac Cumhaill, a hero with wisdom and strength. Fionn built the Giant’s Causeway to reach Scotland so that he could confront his Scottish rival, Benandonner.
Modern Irish Boy Names That Are In Fashion
The roster of modern Irish boy names is constantly expanding. These monikers are usually more recognizable and easier to pronounce (compared to their older counterparts). Parents who want a name with contemporary touches will love the options below:
Aiden is the modern take on the Irish name “Aodh” (belonging to the Celtic God of sun and fire). Aiden, as a result, means “little fire”.
“Aiden” and “Aidan” are two common variants of “Aodh”. “Aiden” (with the “e”) was more frequently adopted by generations following the Great Irish Migration in the 19th century.
In 2021, it was the 26th most chosen name for boys in America, as opposed to the 286th ranking of “Aidan”.
Clancy is a crossover from an Irish surname to a given name. It translates to “Son of Fhlannchaidh” and “red-haired warrior”.
This energetic moniker is still more popular as a surname than a given name. Yet, parents can use it either way, especially for the little one with red locks, to embrace their honorable Irish heritage.
While Dillon is considered an alternative to the ultra-popular “Dylan”, it has an unrelated etymological origin. Dillion emerges from the 12th-century surname that arrived in Ireland at the time of the Anglo-Norman invasion. The definitions are “loyal” and “like a lion”.
Interestingly, Dillion is now also chosen to pay tribute to the legendary musician Bob Dylan (due to its similar sounds).
Farrell is another name steeped in Irish heritage. The name is rooted in “Ó Fearghail” – the family name of an 11th-century Irish nobility. Therefore, it took on the meanings of “Descendant of Fearghail” and “man of valor”.
This clan has lived up to the name’s spirits. It reclaimed complete control over the land from English invaders in the 15th century.
The casual, charming “Flynn” is an anglicized version of the Irish surname “O Floinn”. Therefore, it means “son of the red-haired one” or “one with a reddish complexion”.
Flynn is more common as a first name than a last name in the US (while it’s preferred as the last name in its homeland). It’s the choice of Victoria’s Secret model Miranda Kerr and actor Orlando Bloom for their son.
Hagen is the modern iteration of the surname “Dáithí Ó hÓgáin” and means “youthful one”. It also comes with a Scandinavian ring, as the name is rooted in Old Norse and translates to “high son”.
When traced back to Old German roots, Hagen is commonly interpreted as “enclosure”, emphasizing the value of safety and protection.
The best-known Lennon is perhaps John Lennon from the Beatles. So, this Irish name, meaning “lover”, “blackbird”, and “cloak”, can be a nod to one’s favorite band.
Lennon only sat at 670th on the SSA’s chart in 2021. So, this is good news for parents who want to stray a bit away from the beaten track.
Murphy can be used for both genders. It is the most common family name in Ireland and the 9th most popular in Northern Ireland. Yet, it’s equally striking as a first name.
It’s got a jaunty definition of “sea warrior” as a modern version of “O’Murchadha”. The name was spread by the female character Murphy Brown in the 1988 sitcom of the same name. Surprisingly, it still has strong preferences for boys.
Shane derives from “Seaghan” or “Sean”, both of which come from the classic Hebrew name “John”. It similarly means “graced by God” or “God is gracious”. With its Irish essence, Shane adopted some cowboy charm thanks to the 1953 Western movie of the same name.
Shay is among the few names that are vintage and modern simultaneously. It has two distinct origins. One is the Hebrew “Shai”, denoting “gift”. The other is Irish culture, from which Shay derived the meaning of “admirable” and “stately”.
How About These Top Unique Irish Boy Names?
These sublimely original names will fit the bill nicely for parents who want their kids to stand out. They come with meaningful interpretations, too, so any of these choices will age with your kid well.
“Little abbot” is the meaning behind this sweet, exotic moniker. If you go for it, your little one will share the name with a 6th-century Irish saint who reputedly lived for three centuries.
This common title hails from “Aherlowe”, an Irish spelling for “between two hills”. Meanwhile, in Spanish, the name also points to “barberry tree” – an eye-catching, hardy shrub. Either way, Arlo can encourage your boy to appreciate nature better.
While Barry has multiple roots, the most notable one is the Irish person name “Báire”, which gives it the meaning “fair-haired”. It was the nickname of American President Barack Obama when he was young.
Brody is distinctive with its definitions of “muddy place” or “ditch”. Supposedly arising sometime around the 14th or 15th century, Brody represented a medieval clan in Moray in Scotland. In 2021, it was in the top 100 choices in Ireland.
Once a very common name, Ceallach means “bright-headed”, “church”, and “war, strife”. Back centuries ago, several kings and bishops were given this name. Notably, the Archbishop Ceallach (Celsus) of Armagh was a highly revered Saint in the 12th century.
With Irish and Gaelic roots, Comhghall refers to “fellow hostage”. It belonged to the founder of the great monastery at Bangor back in the 6th century.
Choose Comhghall if you’re something unique that helps your kid stand out. Yet, you might want to consider “Cowall” for a less challenging spelling version.
In Irish folklore, Gobán Saor, also known as “Gobán the builder”, was the greatest smith or architect. Straightforwardly translating to “smith”, Gobán can help honor family generations of architects or builders before your little one.
This Irish masculine name can represent “prince”, “leader”, “ruler”, or “sovereign”. Its anglicized form, “Jarlath”, is a fantastic choice for something briefer.
This Irish name stems from the surname “Séaghdha”. This surname belonged to a family of Corca Dhuibhne in West Kerry. Séaghdha typically means “goodly”, “man of majesty”, or “hawk-like”.
The name also belongs to the league of surname-as-first-names. It shares the same root with “Tadhg” and means “poet” and “philosopher”. Yet, if you prefer simplicity, Teagan is easier to spell than its popular brother.
Tiernan is edgy and distinguished, with a charming Irish air. It evolved from the Old Irish “tigerna” and adorably means “little lord”. This masculine name has enjoyed popularity from early medieval to modern times. In 2021, it was in the top 100 most-used names in the nation.
Top Cute Irish Boy Names For Adorable Babies
Irish names are traditionally connected to saints, kings, and warriors. However, there are also sweet titles that parents might want to give to their kids.
Irish in origin, Alan translates to “little rock”, “handsome”, and “harmony”. So, the name packs many coveted qualities for its bearers. It is common in Ireland, but the name also spread its wings to Scotland, Wales, and England. Alan and Allan are two lovely alternatives to consider, too.
Don’t let the meaning of “salmon” drive you away; the tale behind it might strike you. In Irish mythology, Bradán Feasa, also known as the mythological Salmon of Knowledge, was strongly associated with the legendary Irish hero Fionn MacCumhaill.
Thus, the name is a choice if you seek something related to wisdom but in a less obvious way.
The familiar name “Kevin” is derived from this Irish boy’s name. Caoimhín boasts several favorable meanings: “handsome”, “kind”, “gentle”, or “beautiful at birth”. Choose this name if you want to forge beauty from inside your little kid.
Colm represents peace, as it’s interpreted as “dove”. In the sphere of art, the name is popularized by Irish novelist Colm Toibin and Irish actor Colm Meaney.
Don’t be discouraged by its somewhat unfavorable meaning – “unlucky”, as Delvin can positively mean “fierce courage”.
Instead of reflecting virtues or wishings, this Irish name teaches important life lessons for its bearers. Mishaps are part of life, and bravery is all it takes to overcome them.
Dating back to the 13th century as a surname, Devlin is now the stage name of a contemporary British rapper.
Wolves were depicted heavily in Irish folktales. Among them, the “faoladh” were Irish shape-shifting werewolves. They were guardians of children, the wounded, and the dead. The name “Faolan” evolved from these mythological wolves and means “little wolf”.
Rooted from the Gaelic surname “O’Ciarán”, Kieran means “little dark one” or “black-haired”. The original “Ciarán” is itself brimming with history. It dates back to 1500 years ago and is tied to Saint Ciarán of Clonmacnoise, the Twelve Apostles of the nation.
There are two possible theories regarding Niall’s origin. Arising from the old word “niadh”, this name primarily means “champion”. Meanwhile, it might come from “néall” for “cloud”.
There were two prominent Irish high kings bearing this name in medieval times: one in the 5th century AD and the other in the 9th century AD.
Nollaig is an Irish manifestation of the Latin name “Noel”, which was believed to be coined in the 20th century. Interpreted as “born on Christmas”, Nollaig is almost exclusive to little kids arriving on this date or season.
This male name means “little seal” in both Breton and Irish. It is a name steeped in legacy. Up to twelve Irish saints shared it throughout history.
With its melodious sound, Ronan is a rising star in the SSA’s chart. It consistently climbed from 861st in 2000 to 274th in 2021. Ronan also lends itself to various sweet nicknames. Your options include Roe, Rory, and Roan.
This moniker is another way to honor the many redheads in your family. Rowan, meaning “little redhead”, has been in circulation as a given name since the 16th century. Yet, the name is thought to exist even before that as a surname.
Nature-loving parents might be fond of Rowan, too. The name also denotes “rowan tree” – small deciduous trees bearing red berries. Bonus fact: People might be familiar with the famous and iconic Mr. Bean, whose real name is Rowan Atkinson.
This exotic moniker is traced back to the Scottish “Gaelic Somhairle”. People normally interpret it as “summer wanderer” or sometimes “summer sailor”. Sorley Boy MacDonnell was a Scoto-Irish chief famed for laying the foundation of the MacDonnell clan in Antrim, Ireland.
Other Beautiful Irish Boy Names To Consider
The last section is dedicated to beautiful Irish names that might tickle your fancy. Some of them are familiar and in frequent use inside and outside Ireland. However, there are also fantastic options that are still well under the radar. Let’s take a look:
Brandon is a name of diverse roots, all connected to the UK. In Old Irish, it means “chieftain”. This empowering definition will keep your kid’s confidence high, especially in trying times. Alternatively, nature lovers can lean towards “beacon hill” in Old English or “crown” in Old Welsh.
Brayden is a spelling variant of the Irish surname “Braden”. In turn, “Braden” comes from “Bradan”, a word for “salmon”, which symbolizes wisdom. With such a connection, Brayden is figuratively interpreted as “wise” or “broad”.
Brayden enjoys certain recognition abroad, along with names that end with “den” like Aiden. It ranked 131st in the US in 2021.
Carson is stylish and modern and has been comfortably standing in the top 100 in the US since 2006. It began as a surname that means “son of the marsh-dwellers”. The famous frontiersman Kit Carson also lent this Irish boy an old-western appeal.
Cian is a lovely-sounding name that means “ancient” or “enduring one”. Cian is also an ancient mythological name borne by the son of Dian Cécht – the Irish god of healing and medicine. While rarely heard in America, Cian was a widely-used name in Ireland.
Conan is visually similar to the ever-popular Connor/Conor, so it can be an alternative if you love these names, too. Formed by two elements: “nán” for “little” and “cú” for “wolf”, Conan has both a lovely and strong meaning – “little wolf”.
The name stretches from the seventh-century Irish saint Conan to the modern-day Arthur Conan Doyle, author of the Sherlock Holmes series.
Being Edward’s family name in the popular Twilight series, Cullen is an easily recognizable Irish name. This means people outside Ireland do not often mispronounce it.
This masculine name is of Irish and Gaelic origins meaning “son of the holy one”. Cullen Jenkins is a former football defensive end who played for the Green Bay Packers.
Daire is an Old Irish name that started to get back in vogue in the 18th century. It means “fruitful” and “fertile”. This masculine name, along with its close cousins Dara and Darragh, is among the favorites in Ireland in modern times.
As an Irish form of “Edmund”, “Eamon” also refers to “wealthy protector”. Éamon de Valera, the former president of Ireland, is one of the most famous people with this name.
Eamon has not cracked into the top 1000 most common boy names in the US. This means it’s a perfect choice if you love something unique.
As a masculinized form of the mega-popular “Emma”, Emmett refers to “whole” and “universal”. Originally invented for baby boys, Emmett is now popular for both genders.
Another common root of Emmett is the Hebrew word “emét” which gives it the meaning of “truth”.
Like “Shane”, Eoin also originates from the Hebrew male name “John”. It’s slightly more popular, however. The name ranked 83rd in Ireland in 2021, 5 spots away from its cousin.
This masculine name means “crown” or “raven”. This is one of the main characters in the famous Irish mythological legend Children of Lir. Fiachra was also shared by a seventh-century Irish abbot – Saint Fiacre.
This nature-evoking name means “valley” and comes from Scotland or Ireland. Starting as a surname, Glenn drew increasing popularity as a given name in the 19th century. The name is gender-neutral, so you might want to choose it for a girl, too.
The name Hugh can find its home in German, England, and Ireland. Pointing to “mind” and “intellect”, Hugh offers qualities parents hope their kid will possess.
Thanks to Hugh Jackman, this masculine name boasts a touch of a romantic hero. Nowadays, Hugh is not a name you occasionally hear in the US (with its 2021 spot being 746).
Kane allows for multiple interpretations. First, in Irish, it means “little battler”. Not far from Ireland, Kane took on an entirely different meaning of “beautiful” in Welsh.
The name feels luxurious and dazzling in Japanese, translated as “golden”. Still not convincing enough? The heavenly Hawaiian translation of “man of the Eastern sky” might amaze you.
Shared by many Irish saints, this name is very famous in Ulster as well as the northern counties of Monaghan and Fermanagh. The moniker means “ancient” in Irish.
Malachy is a gorgeous version of “Malachi” – a Hebrew name borne by a prophet in the Old Testament. With this root, Malachy bears the meaning of “messenger of God” or “angel”.
Malachy has a separate meaning in Ireland – “second”. It was famously tied to the High King Malachy, who fought bravely to defeat the Vikings in 980. The celebrity kid Malachy Murphy is the son of the Irish actor Cillian Murphy, who stars in Peaky Blinders.
Odhran is also a piece of Irish culture, as it served as the title of numerous Irish saints, the most famous of them was probably Saint Odhran of Iona. Despite the peculiar meaning “the little pale green one”, this name had a solid spot in Ireland’s top 100 most used names.
In early times, Oran earned high status as the title shared by seven Irish saints, including the patron saint of Waterford (one of Ireland’s oldest cities). As a Gaelic form of “Odhrán”, Oran means “little green one”.
Besides this out-of-ordinary definition, Oran also translates to “song” in Scottish Gaelic or “light” and “singing” in Hebrew. Thus, it’s a right fit for those born into a musical family.
Grady is another last-name-as-first-name from Ireland, meaning “noble”, “illustrious”, or “renowned”. The O’Gradys clan is among the greatest Dalcassian clans residing in modern-day County Clare of Ireland.
This cute little boy’s name carries the special meaning “son of”. This Scottish/Irish moniker can function as a surname prefix, such as Macgill and Macgregor. However, it can stand beautifully in its own right (as the 673rd ranking in 2021 shows).
Since 2010, Nolan has gained noticeable momentum in the US’s name pool. It was the 60th most-used boy name in the country that year.
Translating to “champion”, the name Nolan leaves a big mark in the world of sport. Some examples are Nolan Ryan and Nolan Arenado in baseball or Nolan Carroll in football. Nolan is also commonly heard in Belgium, Canada, and France.
Padraig is the Gaelic form of ever-green “Patrick”. So, it points to the same things as “noble” and “patrician”. Saint Pádraig was the 5th-century patron saint who converted thousands of Irish to Christianity.
Patrick is preferred among Irish Americans as it causes no trouble in pronunciation. However, if you want something that sounds more native to Irish, “Padraig” will do the trick. The appropriate pronunciation is “paw-rick”.
Like many Irish names, Quinn started as a surname in Ireland. It derives from “O’Cuinn”, meaning “descendent of Conn”. The word “Conn” itself represents “intelligence”, “chief leader”, and “head”. With such meanings, Quinn personifies smartness, knowledge, and leadership.
Originating from the surname “Ó Raighbheartaigh”, Rafferty is a classic and modern choice simultaneously. This auspicious name means “floodtide”, “abundance”, and “prosperity”. So, it can be an omen for your baby’s future.
Such a multi-syllable name calls for spunky nicknames, too. You can go for either Raff or Rafe.
In the US, Riley is a lovely neutral-gender option. There are two possible roots of this name, though.
One is from the Old English language, which gives Riley the meaning “rye clearing” or “rye meadow”. The other is the Irish surname “Reilly”, meaning “courageous” and “valiant”. Riley is a win-win if you love both nature and strong boy names!
In the Irish culture, Rooney means “descendent of the champion” and can be used for either sex. It’s a nice way to honor a family with generations of great men and women.
Pronounced “Shaymus”, this name is an Irish manifestation of the Hebrew name “James”. Similarly, it translates to “supplanter” or “one who grabs at the heel”.
This name is more familiar thanks to Seamus Finnegan in Harry Potter and Nobel prize winner Seamus Heaney. Therefore, your kid won’t likely run into many people who ask him how to pronounce the name.
Torin denotes “chief” in Irish culture. Meanwhile, there is a belief that the name emerges from the Gaelic “toirneach”, meaning “thunder”. The meanings and the beginning “T” make this Irish name effortlessly masculine.
Irish Names Speak Volumes About The People And Cultures!
Irish boy names perfectly reflect the culture and history of the people and the land. Therefore, they are a direct way for your little one to embrace his heritage heartily. Whether you want old-school, fashionable, powerful, or unusual names, this list offers anything to suit your preferences.
Yet, if you still need further consultation, I’m glad to discuss the potential choices with you. Just leave them in the comment box. Finally, if you think this Irish name list is useful, please spread it on your social platforms.