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Irish Baby Names from Literature

  • Irish Baby Names from Literature: Names with Gaelic origins and lots of character 1 of 15
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  • Pronounced: ay + deen; Meaning: jealousy 2 of 15
    Aideen

    A female version of the popular Irish name, Aidan, this moniker is sure to leave your little girl's pals green with envy. Coming from the ancient Irish sun and horse goddess, Etain, it's a sweet pick for your modern chick who's bound to give off a heavenly vibe.

  • Pronounced: awn-ye; Meaning: joy, brilliance, wit, glory 3 of 15
    Aine

    Aine is the traditional spelling of Anne and also the Gaelic mythological goddess of love, growth, and healing. It's a quirky variation on a classic name, perfect for the little girl who's bound to stand out ever so elegantly.

  • Pronounced: ash-lin; Meaning: vision, dream 4 of 15
    Aislin

    C.S. Lewis used the name Aslan for his King of Beasts in The Chronicles of Narnia. Just as Aslan protected Narnia in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, this Gaelic interpretation of the name is perfect for that future female leader who can display grace under pressure.

  • Pronounced: ang-gus; Meaning: unique, one choice, exceptionally strong 5 of 15
    Angus

    Want to raise a lover, not a fighter? Look no further than Angus, the Gaelic god of love, youth, and poetry. Gracefully immortalized by W.B. Yeats in The Song of Wandering Aengus, this name holds powerful meanings for literary and mythology buffs everywhere.

  • Meaning: strong, virtuous, honorable 6 of 15
    Brian

    Give your little guy this super-popular Irish name, and he'll share the title of one of the most honored kings in Ireland, Brian Boru. As legend tells it, Boru battled against Vikings in the name of his homeland — meaning this is the perfect moniker for your mini macho man.

  • Pronounced: kah-tree-o-na; Meaning: pure, chaste 7 of 15
    Catriona

    The Irish variant of Cathleen, this name has inspired the creation of favorable protagonists in several literary works, such as Robert Lewis Steven's late 19th century crime thriller, Catriona. Despite its modest definition, this name is spot on for that little leading lady who is hard to ignore.

  • Pronounced: keer + awn or keer + in; Meaning: little black-haired one 8 of 15
    ciaran

    With this newly popular name, your son will share the honor of nearly 26 saints. (The moniker has been a hit in Ireland for more than 1,500 years!) Today, Irish soccer superstar Ciaran O'Brian and actor Ciaran Hinds share the name, making for a unique moniker with a touch of the old and the new — a win-win.

  • Pronounced: dor-ahn; Meaning: fist, stranger, exile 9 of 15
    Doran

    We cannot forget the beautifully soulless title character, Dorian, in Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray. Its Gaelic variant Doran is perfect if you're looking for a strong boy's name with more soul than his counterpart.

  • Meaning: the fair one 10 of 15
    fiona

    Made popular by the red-maned heroine in the Disney hit Shrek, this pretty name evokes visions of fairness and purity. Its origin actually lies in Scotland, but in recent years it has gained popularity in Ireland. With its sweet meaning, we can't question why.

  • Pronounced: gur-tee or gare-tee; Meaning: strength of the spear; spear maiden 11 of 15
    Gertie

    Gertie McDowell is a young, sassy Dublin lass that Leopold Bloom falls for in Ulysses. She's famous for her beauty — though it turns out she has a bum leg — and she fascinates Joyce's protagonist during a fireworks show. Short for Gertrude (of Germanic origin), Gertie is a lot more spunky and playful, just like the name's literary namesake.

  • Pronounced: mack-morris; Meaning: son of Morris; dark, swarthy 12 of 15
    Macmorris

    You can take the surname-for-a-first name trend to a very unique level with Macmorris — Shakespeare's only known Irish character, a quarreling hothead in Henry V.

  • Pronounced ree-gan or ray-gun; Meaning: impulsive, angry, queen 13 of 15
    Regan

    Don't let the demonized The Exorcist character, Regan MacNeil, stop you from using this striking name, which also made an appearance in Shakespeare's King Lear. Its grand and intimidating meaning almost guarantees your girl won't be a shrinking violet.

  • Pronounced: rah-der-ik; Meaning: red king 14 of 15
    Roderick

    Roderick has many meanings in different cultures. It's derived from the Gaelic name Ruairidh and is a good choice if you want an uncommon but traditional-sounding name. Though the mad, paranoid Roderick in Edgar Allen Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher may be the last person you'd want your kid to embody, there's no denying the phonetic punch or the powerful intercultural meanings of this name. Whether you go with Roderick, Rod, or Robert, all closely translating to "famed; shining; ruler," you've got yourself a standout.

  • Pronounced: shay-musl; Meaning: conqueror 15 of 15
    Seamus

    This authentic Irish version of the classical and masculine James secured a spot on the Social Security Administration's Top 1000 Baby Names list in 2009. Possible culprits: either the name of J.K. Rowling's Quidditch enthusiast Seamus Finnigan or the Irish poet laureate Seamus Heaney.

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