In recent times, calling your child something edgy like Harley, Grey or Phoenix is all the rage.
Where once you’d be looked at twice for uttering such nonsensical names at a newborn, it’s now seen as the cool route to take as your first steps into parenthood.
Cue traditional Irish boys names stepping back into the shadows. A shame we must admit, seeing as some of them not only boast unique qualities but nod to Irish roots whilst still retaining a ring to them.
Here’s our top 20 favourite Irish boy names that will never go out of style and that we could do with more of!
This Irish boys name can commonly be seen spelt as Aidan. This name is in reference to the Celtic God of the Sun, so is thought to represent “fire” or to mean “fiery”. Nowadays with gender bender names flying about left, right and centre, we love that this name is being given to girls, too!
Often spelt Aongus, this traditional name is not often seen in contemporary use. According to Old Irish mythology, Aengus was a member of the Tuatha Dé Danann (the spiritual race in Irish mythology) and commonly thought to be the God of love, poetic inspiration and youth. By illustration, he is depicted with singing birds circling his head.
The name Brendan (sometimes spelt Breandan) comes from the Irish Saint Brendan the Navigator (484AD – 577AD). On his early missions as a priest, he set off on long sea voyages in pursuit of the Garden of Eden. He is even said to have reached North America on his travels, many centuries before Christopher Columbus.
The medieval Irish boys name Cathall is broken into two parts. The first is “cath” which means “battle”, whilst “all” means “mightly”. Put together it is thought that this name signifies “a great warrior”. The English version of this name is Charles.
This Celtic boys name translates into English as “little dark one” or “little dark-haired one”. Several saints in Irish history held this popular boys name, which is still as prevalent as ever today.
This Irish boys name dates back to old Ireland and is still popular today. It comes from the Irish “corbmac” which translates to “son of the charioteer”.
This classic Irish boys name is not as common as it once was in Ireland, yet Dáithí’s are not yet extinct, either. When translated to English the name means “swiftness” or “nimbleness”. Dáithí was also the last pagan king of Ireland (405AD – 426 AD).
This Irish boys name can be spelt with or without a fada (e.g. Dónal or Donal) and also Domhnall. This name is often broken into two parts which mean “world” and “mighty”. This name is suggested to signify “ruler of the world”.
The translation of Eamon is “guardian”. It is the Irish version of the name Edmund.
This popular Irish boys name is still widely in use today. It can also be spelt Eoghan. The interpretation of this name is to mean “God’s gift”.
In traditional translations, this Irish boys name means “man of valour”. The name derived from an 8th-century king of Ireland and although is less popular today, is still seen from time-to-time.
This Irish boys name derives from the Irish word “fiach” which means “raven”, by translation. The name also has roots in Irish mythology and this was also the name of the patron Saint of Gardeners in the 7th century.
Gearóid was once an extremely popular Irish boys name and now is less prevalent. It is given to signify valour and means “brave with a spear” or “spear carrier”.
This name can be spelt with or without a fada (e.g. Lorcan or Lorcán). It translates into English to “little fierce one”, and the name has been making a comeback in recent years.
This name is considered to potentially mean “one strength”, “energy” or “force”. It is a strong male name in Ireland and is still widespread today. This is also the name of several Irish kings, giving it extra significance.
This name boggles at first sight, but it really isn’t too much of a tongue-twister. Often spelt with a fada (as in, Oisín) the name means “little deer”. According to Irish legend, Oisin was a poet and warrior hero.
This classic Irish name is the Gaelic version of Patrick. The name translates to mean “of the patrician class” (which means the noble class) and was introduced to Ireland by Saint Patrick.
This popular Irish boys name, which can also be spelt Ruaidhrí, means “red-haired king”. There are many English and Scottish variations of this common Celtic name.
Seamus is a common Irish boys name. It is considered to be a Gaelic version of James and is thought to mean “supplanter”, referring to a ruler of a country. This name was made most famous by Ireland’s 1995 Nobel Prize-winning, Irish poet Seamus Heaney.
This name can be spelt as both Tiarnán and Tiernan. In Gaelic origin, the name is to mean “high Lord” and has Biblical connotations.