100 Cool Irish Names for Boys

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Traditional, powerful, and awesome Irish male names for your new little warrior!

Choosing the perfect Irish boy name can be difficult. After all, you want the name to suit your son perfectly while still being an honorable nod to the country and culture you love. So, we have listed 100 of the most strong, powerful, traditional, and modern Irish names for boys we could find and have given you all you need to know about their meanings, origins, pronunciations, and more!


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100 Powerful Irish Names for Boys

Read on to find your new favorite Irish boy name, alongside its pronunciation, meaning, history, and more.

Ailbhe

Ailbhe is a sweet, unisex name derived from the Old Irish word “albho,” meaning “white.” There lived a Saint Ailbe in the 6th-century, in County Tipperary, Ireland, so the name has strong roots in that region. Ailbhe is a unique name, soft-sounding and attractive, whether it’s used as an Irish name for a boy or a girl.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: White
  • Pronunciation: al-va
  • Variations: Ailbe, Albert
  • Namesakes: Saint Ailbe, a 6th-century Irish saint. Ailbhe Smyth, an Irish feminist and LGBTQ activist.
Nature-inspired, Unique

Ailill

One of the most magical Irish male names you will find is Ailill. Meaning “elf,” the name already has spiritual and enchanting qualities, sounding as though it belongs to someone often found frolicking in a mystical forest somewhere. However, the name is further enlightened by the fact that it has been borne by many kings of Irish legend throughout medieval times. For instance, Ailill mac Mata was a legendary king of Connacht, the husband of Queen Maebh. Also on the list of High Kings of Ireland named Ailill are Finn, mac Slanuill, Caisfhiaclach, and Inbanda, amongst others. A beautiful name with a magical meaning, consider Ailill for your majestic new arrival.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Elf
  • Pronunciation: al-yill
Mythological, Unique, Pure

Alaois

Alaois is a beautiful name to consider for your baby boy. Although uncommon, Alaois is feisty and stylish in nature, holding the meaning of “warrior.” The unusual grouping of vowels in Alaois makes the name look particularly appealing on paper, and after all, A- names are always considered cool, aren’t they? Alaois is the Irish form of Aloysius, which also sounds positively regal and all-powerful.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Warrior
  • Variations: Aloysius
Strong, Unique

Aodhan

If you like the name Aidan but are hoping for your child’s name to carry more of a traditional Irish Gaelic flair, Aodhan might just be the name for you. Aodhan derives from “aodh,” which means “fiery,” leading to the feisty, self-certain name meanings of “born of fire” or “little fiery one.”

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Born of fire, little fiery one
  • Variations: Aidan, Aeddan
Strong, Cool

Aonghus

The traditional form of Aonghus is Oíngus which, composed of the elements “óen” (one) and “gus” (strength, force), gives the name and all its derivatives the united meaning of “one strength.” Although the variant Angus may seem much more anglicized, Aonghus maintains a traditional Irish spelling. Also, Aonghus was the name of the Irish god of love and youth, a beautifully romantic sentiment to hold on to indeed.

  • Origin: Irish, Scottish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: One strength
  • Variations: Angus, Oíngus, Aonghas
Strong, Pure, Mythological

Ardan

Ardan is a stylish, unique, and modern-sounding name of Irish origin. Meaning “high aspiration,” Ardan encourages big dreams and a big personality, so a great message to pass on to your little boy. There are two townships in Ireland named Ardan, as well as an Irish-language Sunday night chat show. Other than that, Ardan isn’t a commonly-heard name at all, but it still somehow seems to sound like one of those names you’ve heard many times before.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: High aspiration
Cool, Strong

Beckett

Beckett is a surname of English origin, which could mean either “by the little brook” or “beehive.” The name was brought over to Ireland by English settlers and is significant in that country thanks to the famous namesake Samuel Beckett. Beckett was a novelist, playwright, and poet who won the 1969 Nobel Prize for Literature and was elected as Saoi of Aosdána, the highest honor bestowed by the Irish association of artists, in 1984.

  • Origin: English, Irish
  • Meaning: Little brook, or beehive
  • Namesakes: Samuel Beckett, an Irish novelist and playwright.
Cool, Strong

Berach

Berach is a unique but cool Irish name, most known for being borne by the 6th-century Irish saint, best celebrated today in County Roscommon. Meaning “sharp,” Berach could signify having a quick wit or bountiful wisdom. Berach is likely to be shortened to Barry, but we’d recommend you keep hold of this attractive, earthy name in its full form in order to best appreciate it for all its glory.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Sharp
  • Pronunciation: bahr-akh
  • Variations: Barry, Bearach
  • Namesakes: Saint Berach, a 6th-century Irish saint.
Unique, Stylish

Brady

Brady originated as the Irish surname Ó Brádaigh, which means “spirited.” Presumably, thanks to its short-but-sweet nature and stylish lilt, it has evolved into a fairly popular masculine given name in the US. Brady, of course, reminds us of the cult classic television sitcom The Brady Bunch, perhaps a great tv show to watch together with little Brady as he gets older!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Spirited
  • Variations: Bradach, Bradie
  • Popularity: Brady peaked in popularity in the US between 2007 and 2008, in both years entering the top 100 baby boy names at ranks 93 and 94. It is a fairly common and popular name.
Popular, Joyful

Brendan

What better way to name your new little prince than with a name that literally means just that? Brendan is a popular and sweet name and evokes majesty and hope. Saint Brendan the Navigator was a 6th-century monastery founder and adventurer, who has a mythical island named after him, said to exist somewhere unknown in the Atlantic ocean. Brendan has a simple but soft pronunciation and would make a lovely name for your new little voyager.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Prince
  • Variations: Breandán
  • Namesakes: Saint Brendan of Clonfert, an Irish monastic saint.
Popular, Regal, Strong
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Brion

Brion is a lesser-heard variation on the popular Irish name Brian. Switching the ‘a’ to an ‘o’ somehow breathes fresh life into the name, and we think this would make a brilliant choice for a modern little boy. Both names have regal meanings of nobility and virtue, so all-around positive traits for Brion to aspire to as he grows up. There are also quite a few places named Brion throughout France, which may be another deciding factor in choosing this name if you’re from one of those regions?

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: High, noble, brave
  • Variations: Brian
Unique, Stylish

Brogan

Brogan is a common Irish surname, which can also be used as a cool given name for boys. The nephew of Saint Patrick was named Brogan, and there was even an ancient King Breogan, whose name is easily linkable to Brogan. With the vague meaning of “shoe,” Brogan is one of those names you can choose to interpret as you like, whatever way is best to suit your little treasure.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Shoe
  • Variations: Broccan, Bracan
  • Namesakes: Saint Broccán Clóen, a 6th-century Irish cleric and saint.
Cool, Stylish

Brynn

Brynn, or Bryn, is a sweet, summery name for both boys and girls, derived from Celtic origins. In Welsh, Bryn means “hill,” and we love how you can use this meaning to interpret the name as you please. Do you live on a hill, or did you have to overcome a challenge to get to where you are today? Choose Brynn for a delightful, short, and stylish Celtic name for your new arrival.

  • Origin: Celtic, Irish, Welsh
  • Meaning: Hill
  • Variations: Bryn
Nature-inspired, Short

Cabhan

Cabhan is a lesser-heard name of Irish origin. Its pronunciation is “kav-an,” similar to the name of the Irish county, Cavan, located in the province of Ulster. Cabhan is said to mean “hollow” or “grassy hill,” so a beautifully outdoorsy, airy name for a bright boy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Grassy hill, hollow
  • Pronunciation: kav-an
  • Variations: Cavan
Nature-inspired, Unique, Locational

Cairbre

Cairbre is a strong, earthy name, deeply rooted in Irish legend. According to mythology, the ancient Irish god of speech and language Ogma bore a son named Cairbre. Cairbre also connotes majesty, having been the name borne by two legendary High Kings of Ireland, including the usurper Cairbre Cinnchait. Cairbre is an uncommon name with a unique pronunciation but a true and powerful honor to bestow upon your baby boy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Charioteer
  • Pronunciation: KAHR-bra
  • Namesakes: Cairbre Cinnchait, a legendary 1st-century High King of Ireland. Cairbre Lifechair, a 3rd-century High King of Ireland. Cairbre, son of mythological Irish god Ogma.
Mythological, Regal

Calhoun

A variant of the Scottish Colquhoun, Calhoun is an Irish surname and given name, rich with earthy, adventurous undertones. Its popularity as a family name – including for the 7th Vice President of the United States – has led to its evolution into a given name, but not one you’ll commonly hear. There are townships named Calhoun in a number of states across the US, so it could make a sweet locational name for a baby born in one of these regions, too.

  • Origin: Irish, Scottish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Corner, narrow woods
  • Pronunciation: kal-hoon
  • Variations: Colquhoun
  • Namesakes: John C. Calhoun, the 7th Vice President of the United States.
Unique, Strong

Canice

Canice is a unique, delightful name of Irish Gaelic origin. Meaning “handsome,” you’ll no doubt agree that it makes the perfect name for your new little stunner of a son, as well as offering friendly, confident, and charming connotations. Saint Cainnech of Aghaboe was an early Irish monastic founder and one of the Twelve Apostles of Ireland, making this noble name deeply rooted in Irish culture. The name may sound and look similar to the feminine Candice, but Canice is likely to be more user-friendly than the more traditionally-spelled Coinneach.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Handsome, pleasant
  • Pronunciation: can-iss
  • Variations: Coinneach, Cainnech
  • Namesakes: Saint Cainnech of Aghaboe, an early Irish saint
Unique, Strong

Cathal

Meaning “strong in battle,” Cathal is a powerful, rich name for your new little warrior. A powerful name, Cathal dates right back to medieval Ireland, with several kings having borne the name, as well as the 7th-century Irish saint Cathal of Taranto. Although the silent ‘t’ in Cathal may cause confusion for some, we think it is much more preferable to keep the spelling nice and traditional. But, if you’d rather opt for a more anglicized alternative, consider Cahal or Cahill as alternative spellings.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Strong in battle
  • Pronunciation: ka-haal
  • Variations: Cahal, Cahill
  • Namesakes: Cathal Ó Searcaigh, an Irish language poet. Saint Cathal of Taranto, a 7th-century Irish monk and patron saint of the Sicilian Normans.
  • Popularity: Cathal is a very popular name in modern Ireland, although it is yet to become commonly known in the US.
Strong, Popular, Stylish

Cearul

A feisty name indeed, Cearul is a unique but powerful name to bless upon a baby boy. Meaning “fierce in battle,” the name comes from the Irish word “cearbhall.” Cearul sounds fiery but fair, with a pronunciation most similar to the English Carroll.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Fierce in battle
  • Pronunciation: kar-ul
  • Variations: Carroll
Unique, Strong

Cianán

Cianán is a cool, modern masculine name of Irish origin. It is actually a variant of the very popular given name Cian, which means “ancient” in Irish Gaelic. Adding the “án” suffix softens the name and adds a more hipster feel, as well as making it that bit more unique. “Ancient” may not be the word you’d use to describe your newborn, but this meaning could easily be interpreted to encompass connotations such as tradition, love, and strength in your son’s name.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Ancient
  • Variations: Cian, Keenan
Stylish, Cool
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Colm

Colm is a beautiful and traditional masculine name of Irish origin. Meaning “dove,” the name holds connotations of purity, peace, and freedom while being sweet and soft-sounding. If you are unfamiliar with the name, it is worth pointing out that it is actually pronounced with two syllables, like “col-lum.”

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dove
  • Pronunciation: col-lum
  • Variations: Colum
  • Namesakes: Colm Wilkinson, an Irish actor and singer. Colm Meaney, an Irish actor.
Animals, Pure

Conan

Conan is a brilliantly strong and powerful boy name of Irish origin, with plenty of cool namesakes to credit behind him. Meaning “little wolf,” Conan sounds sweet but rugged, an adorable choice for an autumn-born baby. As well as being the name of a handful of Dukes of Brittany, there was also an early Saint Conan of the Isle of Man. Conan was the middle name of the legendary British writer who created the character of Sherlock Holmes and, for a particularly feisty namesake, there’s also the fictional Conan the Barbarian, a hero who features in all kinds of fantasy media.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little wolf
  • Namesakes: Conan O’Brien, an American talk show host. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes. Conan the Barbarian, a fictional fantasy hero.
Animals, Strong

Conchobhar

Conchobhar is a powerful, fiery name and the source which brought us the popular variation Connor. Meaning “lover of hounds,” Conchobhar sounds rugged and playful, but its links to a line of legendary High Kings and Irish aristocracy encompass the name in majesty and power. You will no doubt enjoy learning all these legends with Conchobhar as he grows up to ask about his traditional name but, if you’d prefer a name a little less exaggerated, you may prefer to opt for Connor.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Lover of hounds
  • Variations: Conchobar, Connor, Conn
  • Namesakes: Conchobar Abradruad, a legendary 1st-century High King of Ireland. Conchobar mac Donnchada, a legendary High King of Ireland.
Animals, Regal, Unique

Cormac

Cormac is an especially impressive masculine name of Irish Gaelic origin. Its meaning is hazy, but it is perhaps most commonly recognized to mean “charioteer” or “raven.” So, the connotations may be either sporty and gladiator-style or dark, mysterious, and flighty for this name!

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Charioteer, raven
  • Variations: Cormag
  • Namesakes: Cormac McCarthy, an American writer. Cormac Mac Airt, an ancient High King of Ireland.
Unique, Regal

Daithi

Daithi is an Old Irish name, which is sleek, stylish, and smart. Perfectly summed up, in fact, by its meaning – which is “swift” or “nimbleness.” Daithi is a unique name which some argue to be the Irish form of David. Acquaintances unfamiliar with the Irish language may struggle with pronunciation on this one, but we think it’s worth the explanations.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Swift
  • Pronunciation: dah-hee
  • Variations: Dahy, David
Unique, Joyful

Daly

The Irish masculine given name Daly is derived from the traditional Irish Gaelic surname Ó Dálaigh. This evolved into the surname Daly, but we think it would also make an adorable and joyous given name for a baby boy too. Its meaning of “counselor” offers the name an air of responsibility, but otherwise, the name sounds breezy, friendly, and open to adventure.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Counsellor, frequenter of gatherings or meetings
  • Variations: Dálaigh, Dale, Dawley
  • Popularity: Daly is an uncommon name in the US, and has never ranked in the top 1000 baby names.
Short, Pure, Joyful

Dara

With the dual meaning of “oak tree” and “wise,” Dara has such majestic, admirable connotations for a name so short. We have listed it here as an Irish name, but Dara also has origins in Persian, Hebrew, Slavic and Indonesian cultures, amongst others. So if you’re looking for a name with a multicultural heritage, then the simple-but-mighty Dara might be the one for you. Dara can be used for both males and females and makes for a cool, unique alternative to the popular options Sara, Tara, or Kara.

  • Origin: Irish, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Oak tree, wise
  • Variations: Daire, Darra
  • Namesakes: Dara O Briain, an Irish comedian. Dara Torres, an American Olympic swimmer.
Nature-inspired, Regal, Unique

Declan

It simply must be said that Declan is a beautiful name with a beautiful meaning. Declan is the anglicized product of the traditional Irish Gaelic name Deaglán, made up of the elements “deagh” and “lán,” both delightfully full of positivity and giving the name the pure meaning of “full of goodness.” You can’t wish more upon your son than for him to bring joy, light, and excellence into the world, so Declan is a particularly magical name to choose.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Full of goodness
  • Variations: Deaglán
  • Namesakes: Declan of Ardmore, a 5th-century Irish saint. Declan Donnelly, a British television personality and half of the duo Ant and Dec. Declan Rice, an English footballer.
  • Popularity: Declan is a recently popular name in the US, entering the SSA top 1000 most popular names list just before the new millennium. To date, its peak was in 2019, as the 95th most popular boys name that year.
Popular, Pure

Derry

As well as being a joyful nickname derived from traditional Irish names such as Dermot or Diarmuid, Derry is also the name of a city in Northern Ireland. The name of the city comes from the Old Irish Daire, and its simple, sweet-sounding, and upbeat form have led to it becoming known as a unisex given name. If you hail from Derry or County Derry, this name would make a lovely tribute to your roots.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Like an oak
  • Variations: Daire, Dermot, Diarmuid, Derrie
  • Namesakes: Derry O’Sullivan, an Irish poet. Derry Clarke, an Irish celebrity chef. Derry Grehan, a Canadian guitarist.
Locational, Joyful

Desmond

The name Desmond originated as Deasmhumhain, which, let’s face it, is quite a mouthful of a name to even consider today for a baby boy. Thankfully, Desmond is much more accessible and recognizable as a name whilst still keeping that traditional Irish charm we know and love. The name is actually a marker of place, meaning “a person from South Munster,” which is a region in Ireland. So, if you’re from South Munster, consider Desmond as a great local landmark of a name for your new baby boy!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: From South Munster, Ireland
  • Variations: Desi
  • Namesakes: Desmond Tutu, a South African civil rights activist and archbishop. Desmond Elliot, a Nigerian actor and politician. Desmond Morris, an English zoologist, painter, and author.
Locational, Popular
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Devin

Devin is a hip and stylish given name, somehow romanticized by its meaning of “poet.” Devin can be used for both males and females (being more popular for boys in the US) and is derived from the Irish Gaelic surname Ó Damháin. “Damh” means “poet” in Irish, hence the sweet, literary-related meaning. Forget Kevin, choose Devin!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Poet
  • Variations: Dev, Devyn
  • Popularity: Devin is a popular masculine name in the US, entering the top 1000 name charts in the 1950s and spending the period between 1987 and 2007 comfortably in the top 100 most popular names.
Cool, Popular

Diarmaid

Diarmaid is a strong and traditional Irish name borne by many middle Irish kings and noblemen. It is in Irish mythology, however, that the name Diarmaid truly shines and makes it such an interesting and worthwhile choice to consider for your baby boy. According to legend, Diarmuid was a demigod whose love for Grainne was the topic of a romantic folk tale. One of Diarmuid’s most-known traits was his famous “love spot” – a magical mark placed under his eye, which caused any woman he met to fall deeply in love with him.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Without envy
  • Pronunciation: deer-mid
  • Variations: Diarmuid, Dermot
  • Namesakes: Diarmuid, an Irish mythological warrior and lover. Diarmaid MacCulloch, a British historian.
Unique, Mythological

Dillon

Dillon is an Irish given name and surname, meaning “faithful one.” It is soft-sounding and modern, and many consider it a common variant on the given name Dylan. Although Dillon and Dylan sound identical, the two are not to be confused in the way of meanings and origins. Dillon is Irish and Dylan is a name of Welsh origin, meaning “son of the sea.” Whether you’re choosing a name based on heritage or meaning, make sure you differentiate the two correctly. If you’re just a fan of the sound of the name and aren’t really bothered about the spelling, at least you have a couple of beautiful meanings to choose between!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Faithful one, loyal one
  • Popularity: In the US, Dillon peaked in popularity in the 1990s, reaching the top 200 most popular male names throughout. It is a fairly popular name and has featured in the top 1000 since the 1980s.
Popular, Cool, Stylish

Dolan

Dolan is a shortened-down and anglicized form of the traditional Irish sept name Dobhailen. It is a fairly common surname in Ireland and beyond, and this, of course, makes it eligible to transition over into the pool of stylish surnames-turned-first names! Meaning “dark” or “defiant,” Dolan is especially feisty and mysterious, but that only makes us want to meet him more. For a dark-haired baby – or one born during the black of night, perhaps – Dolan would make a bold, confident, and intriguing name.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dark, defiant
  • Variations: Dobhailen
Stylish, Cool

Donal

Donal is a lesser-heard Irish variation on the Gaelic Domhnall, which in turn gave us the names Donald and Donnie. With the meaning of “world ruler,” you’d be putting quite the honor upon Donal, but we’re sure he’ll live up to the power and wisdom the name evokes. Donal is pronounced the same as the traditional Domhnall but would make more sense to uneducated anglicized readers. It may also be preferable to Donald to avoid people linking your son to the Disney duck!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: World ruler
  • Variations: Domhnall, Donald
Unique, Cool

Donnan

Donnan is a unique Irish surname and masculine given name, derived from the meaning “brown.” Donnan is a lovely option for a dark-haired child, but we think it’s a stylish and fun name for a baby born with any hair color, or even no hair at all! Donnan will probably be shortened to Don – which may or may not be a drawback – but it’s easy spelling and pronunciation will certainly make Donnan nice and memorable.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Brown-haired
  • Variations: Donne
  • Namesakes: Donnan of Eigg, an early Gaelic priest and patron saint of Eigg, Scotland. Frederick G. Donnan, an Irish physical chemist
Unique, Pure

Donncha

Donncha is a name borne by a huge number of Irish and Gaelic kings, earls, and rulers throughout the ages, both legendary and historical. Like Donnan, Donncha is derived from the Irish “donn,” meaning “brown,” yet with the addition of the element “cath,” which means “battle.” So, not only does Donncha mean “brown-haired,” but also “warrior” – making this name a particularly handsome and feisty one.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Brown-haired warrior
  • Pronunciation: don-acka
Strong, Unique

Donovan

Donovan is derived from the Irish Gaelic name Donnubán, after a 10th-century king who ruled over the area now recognized as County Limerick. From there, Donovan evolved into a common Irish surname and is also used as a stylish, rhythmic given name for boys. Donovan could be shortened to the nicknames Don or Donny, but we think the original Donovan is too cool to mess with!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dark
  • Namesakes: Donovan, a Scottish folk musician. Donovan McNabb, an American football player. Jason Donovan, an Australian singer and actor.
Cool, Stylish, Strong

Eamon

Eamon is a traditional Irish name but not commonly heard for babies born outside of Ireland. Eamon is, in fact, the Irish form of the Old English name Edmund, which was made up of the elements “ead” and “mund,” meaning “rich / wealth” and “guardian,” respectively. From here, we reach the noble meaning of “guardian of wealth.” To give this name to a son would be quite an honor, almost as though you’re entrusting your family line down through the baby. How sweet!

  • Origin: Irish, Old English
  • Meaning: Guardian of wealth, prosperity
  • Pronunciation: ay-man
  • Variations: Eamonn, Edmund
  • Namesakes: Éamon de Valera, former President of Ireland. Eamonn Holmes, a Northern Irish television personality.
Pure, Strong

Eirnin

Rare but stunning, Eirnin is a masculine given name of Irish origin. Meaning “iron,” Eirnin is strong and reliable whilst still sounding somehow bouncy and innocent. Pronounced “air-nin,” Eirnin could potentially use Ernie as a nickname as he grows older, but we think Eirnin carries such an aura of joy and intrigue about it that we’d hate to see it shortened!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Iron
  • Pronunciation: air-nin
  • Variations: Ernan, Ernest
  • Popularity: Eirnin is a very uncommonly heard name.
Unique, Strong
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Emmet

Emmett is a cool and popular name of English and Hebrew origin, with the pure, noble meaning of “truth.” However, its form Emmet is tied to Irish culture and history in honor of the 18th-century nationalist Robert Emmet, who led the 1798 rebellion against the British. His efforts were unsuccessful, but his name is remembered for his passion for his country.

  • Origin: English, Irish, Hebrew
  • Meaning: Truth
  • Variations: Emmett
  • Namesakes: Robert Emmet, the leader of the 1803 Irish rebellion.
Pure, Popular

Eoghan

Pronounced as Owen would be, Eoghan is a traditional Irish Gaelic name for a youthful, dreamy little boy. Meaning “born of the yew tree,” Eoghan is delightfully nature-inspired. Yew trees are beautiful and known for being symbols of longevity and resurrection, offering the name Eoghan a touching tribute to family spirit living on. Eoghan is also deeply rooted in Irish legend, having been a name borne by a handful of Kings and noblemen, both historical and mythological.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Born of the yew tree
  • Pronunciation: oh-in, yo-in
  • Variations: Ewan, Owen
  • Namesakes: Eoghan of Ardstraw, a 6th-century Irish saint. Eogan mac Durthacht, a mythological Irish king. Eogan mac Neill, son of Niall of the Nine Hostages.
Nature-inspired, Sweet, Mythological

Fearghal

Fearghal is a unique, strong name for a confident little boy. The name translates to “man of valor,” offering brave and noble qualities for your son to live up to. If you are not keen on having the word “fear” feature at the start of the name, you could always use the shorter-spelled variant Fergal, which means the same. As with many traditional Irish names, so much local history is rooted in the titles, and Fearghal is no exception. The name was borne by a handful of ancient Irish leaders, including an 8th-century ruler of the region now recognized as Galway.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Brave, man of valor
  • Pronunciation: fer-gal
  • Variations: Fergal, Ferghus
Strong, Regal

Felim

Felim is a unique but soft-sounding name of Irish origin and one borne by three kings in Ireland throughout history. There is a Saint Felim, too, who is best associated with the diocese of Kilmore in County Cavan. Meaning “ever good,” Felim is pure and wholesome as a name and will no doubt shine light on those who carry it.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Ever good
  • Pronunciation: fail-im
  • Variations: Feilim, Phelan, Feidhelm
  • Namesakes: Saint Felim, an Irish hermit and priest. Feidhelm Mac Crimthainn, an Irish king and bishop.
Pure, Unique

Fiadh

Fiadh is a stunning, magical name dating back to Old Irish. Primarily a girl’s name, Fiadh may still be used as a masculine name too, but it is unique as both nonetheless. The name means “deer,” a beautiful, tranquil, and innocent animal spirit to evoke. However, it also comes from the Old Irish word for “wild,” which is somehow the opposite. Whether Fiadh ends up with a peaceful nature or feisty adventurousness, this is a perfectly intriguing name to bless upon him.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Deer, wild
  • Pronunciation: FEE-a
Animals, Unique, Short

Finnian

Finnian is one of the sweetest, most adorable sounding Irish masculine names out there, in our humble opinion. It is soft and rhythmic, with the pure meaning of “fair” from the Old Irish “finn.” For a fun alternative to the ever-popular names Finn, or Finley, choose Finnian for your baby boy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Fair
  • Variations: Finn, Finbar
  • Namesakes: Finnian of Movilla, an Irish Christian missionary. Finnian of Clonard, an Irish saint and monastic founder.
  • Popularity: Finnian is an uncommon name in the US, having never reached the top 1000 most popular masculine names. Its variant Finn, however, has ranked in the top 500 names since the early 2000s and stayed there through 2020.
Pure, Unique, Joyful

Fintan

Meaning “white fire,” Fintan is a spicy, magical name for a cool baby boy. Its root lies within Irish and Gaelic, and fans of mythology are certain to delight in this unique name. According to legend, a seer named Fintan mac Bóchra was the only person to survive the deluge (flood) by shapeshifting into the form of a salmon. The mythological Fintan lived for 5500 years following this flood and became a trusted advisor to many Irish kings, going down in legend as “the Wise.” Smart, fiery, and a magical shapeshifter? Not a bad namesake at all – certainly a strong contender to consider for an Irish boy name for your new little warrior!

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: White fire
  • Variations: Finn, Fionntán
  • Namesakes: Fintan mac Bóchra, a figure in Irish mythology. Saint Fintan Munnu, a 7th-century Irish saint. James Fintan Lalor, an Irish revolutionary and journalist.
Mythological, Unique, Stylish

Fionn

Fionn is a modern version of Finn. Both are Irish in origin and are strong, stylish names, but we like Fionn for that extra syllable and extra mystique. If you’re interested in Irish mythology and legend, Fionn mac Cumhaill is a noted warrior-hunter who became all-knowing after consuming an enchanted “Salmon of Knowledge.” Maybe if you were craving a lot of salmon during your pregnancy, it was a sign that Fionn is the right name to choose?

  • Origin: Irish, Scottish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Fair-haired
  • Namesakes: Fionn mac Cumhaill, a mythological Irish warrior. Fionn Whitehead, an English actor.
Short, Stylish

Flynn

The name Flynn is very much like the ever-popular Finn, except with a bit more flair! As well as being the name of a Disney prince (see: Tangled, 2010), Flynn is a common surname across the English-speaking world. It derives from the Irish O Floinn, which means “red/reddish,” and brings us to the meaning of “red-haired one,” or even “son of the red-haired one.” If your baby – or you – are natural redheads, Flynn could be a brilliant name to choose for him. Short and snappy, it could even make a great middle name to carry forward a family name.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Red-haired one
Short, Stylish

Galvin

Galvin is a unique but stylish Irish masculine name and makes a cool alternative to the Scottish boy name Gavin. Galvin comes from the Irish word for “sparrow,” the sweetest, most sing-songy of birds to name your inquisitive little boy after. Galvin is a surname, but we know from experience that surname first names are ever-popular amongst the cool kids, and we’d love to see Galvin grow in popularity in the US.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Sparrow
  • Variations: Gavin, Gealbhán
Animals, Pure
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Garvan

Garvan is a feisty little name and one which will stand out as tough even into manhood. Meaning “little rough one,” Garvan holds quite a firm, confident hold, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t consider it for your precious little darling. The name comes from the Gaelic word “garbh,” meaning “rough,” and the “v” pronunciation of the Irish “bh” has led to its anglicization to Garvan.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Little rough one
  • Variations: Garbhan
Strong, Unique

Grady

Grady – a masculine given name and Irish ancient clan name – is derived from the Gaelic Grádaigh, meaning “noble” or “illustrious.” The name is best rooted in the counties of Limerick and Clare, but Grady would make a cool name even for those without Irish heritage. Its rugged sound, combined with its regal and confident meaning, sets Grady apart from the crowd.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Noble, illustrious
Regal, Joyful

Hagan

Hagan would make a cool, unique, Irish-inspired name for a baby boy. Most commonly heard used as a surname, Hagan is derived from the Irish Gaelic family name O’Hagain. As a given name, it is unlikely Hagan would be shortened, and Hagan would most likely be the only one in his class with that name. Hagan, or its variant Hogan, would work well as a middle name to carry on a maiden family name, too, if you’re unsure about using it as a first name for your baby boy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Youthful, noble
  • Variations: Hagen, Hakon, Hogan
Unique, Stylish

Iollan

Iollan is a unique but very traditional Irish name and not one you’re likely to hear outside of Ireland. According to Irish legend, Iollan was the name borne by the son of the High King Fergus Mac Roth, noted for being loyal and honorable. We cannot think of any variations for Iollan, making the name even more special and perfect for a one-of-a-kind guy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: One who worships a different god
  • Pronunciation: ul-an
  • Namesakes: Iollan Mac an leagha, a 15th-century Gaelic author and scribe.
Unique, Cool

Jarlath

Jarlath is a name made popular by the 6th-century Irish saint, most remembered for his teachings and for founding a monastery in Galway. This makes the name a particularly touching tribute for a baby born in this region. Jarlath is not usually heard outside of Ireland, but its familiar spelling probably won’t lead to any pronunciation confusion. Meaning “leader” or “prince,” Jarlath is a wondrously majestic name and a perfect honor to bless upon your new little love.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Leader, prince
  • Pronunciation: jar-lath
  • Namesakes: Saint Jarlath, a 6th-century Irish priest and scholar. Jarlath Henderson, a Northern Irish folk musician.
  • Popularity: Jarlath is a fairly popular name in Ireland, peaking in the top 200 boys’ names in the 1970s. It has since slipped down the charts but remains in the top 1000 names as of 2020.
Unique, Regal

Keir

Keir is a cool, snappy name of Irish Gaelic origin. Although it is rarely used, it sounds familiar and amiable nonetheless. Meaning “dark one,” Keir could be a great option for a baby born with a full head of brown locks, or perhaps even for a nighttime birth. This meaning is mysterious and intriguing, and we’d love to see a rise in popularity on this awesome given name.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Dark one
  • Pronunciation: KEE-er
  • Variations: Kier, Ciar, Kerr
  • Namesakes: Sir Keir Starmer, British head of the UK Labour party. Keir Dullea, an American actor.
Cool, Stylish, Short

Kermit

Although perhaps most commonly associated with a green frog puppet, Kermit is a masculine name of Irish and Manx origin that was rather popular in the US in the early 1900s. Even the former US President Theodore Roosevelt chose it for his son. It is said that the name originates from the Irish surname MacDermott, giving it the meaning “son of Dermot.” Although Dermot may be a preferable, less-amphibious variant to consider, we think Kermit sounds rather cute and wouldn’t be opposed to the name making a comeback in the near future.

  • Origin: Irish, Manx
  • Meaning: Son of Dermot, without envy
  • Variations: Dermot, Kermode
  • Namesakes: Kermit Roosevelt, son of US President Theodore Roosevelt. Kermit the Frog, a popular character from The Muppets.
  • Popularity: Kermit is a fairly popular name in the US, having ranked in the top 1000 most popular boy’s names from 1901 through 1978. It peaked in 1909, ranking as the 175th most common name.
Joyful, Pure

Kevan

Kevan is an attractive variant of the ever-popular name Kevin. A name of Irish origin, Kevan/Kevin started life as Caoimhín, which means “of noble birth” or “handsome.” Both these meanings are lovely sentiments to pass on to your son, and Kevan makes a unique alternative way of commemorating a Kevin in your family.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Handsome, of noble birth
  • Variations: Kevin, Caomhán
Regal, Pure

Kieve

As well as being the name of a chicken dish and the Capital of Ukraine, Kieve is recognized as being a unisex name of Irish origin. It derives from the same roots as the feminine name Caoimhe, yet is made much more accessible with its anglicized spelling. Said to mean “mythical,” Kieve has an aura of magic about it, only broadened by how uncommonly heard it is as a given name.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Mythical
  • Variations: Kevin, Caoimhe
Unique, Short

Lee

Lee is one of those timeless, ever-popular names which can be associated with many different language and cultural origins. Its Irish roots come from the word “laoidh,” which means “poem.” There is also a River Lee in Ireland, known natively as “An Laoi.” The river runs in the Shehy Mountains through County Cork, giving Lee a further beautiful meaning if your family has a heritage in that area.

  • Origin: Irish, English
  • Meaning: Poem
  • Variations: Leigh, Laoi
  • Popularity: Lee is a very popular name in the US, spending 1900-1950 in the top 50 most common boy’s names and ranking comfortably in the top 800 since then.
Popular, Short, Cool
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Lennon

For music fans, Lennon is a brilliant Irish name to consider for your new son or daughter. A unisex name, Lennon is sweet-sounding and stylish with a soft lilt. It would make an impressively cool middle name, but also a rather stand-out given name too. It derives from the Irish name Leannán, which romantically means “lover.” Imagine a baby born on Valentine’s day to a pair of music-loving parents? You couldn’t go wrong with the name Lennon at all.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Lover
  • Variations: Leannán
  • Namesakes: John Lennon, an English musician and founding member of The Beatles.
Cool, Stylish, Pure

Liam

Liam is one of the most popular Irish boy names out there, ranking at the top most popular masculine names in the US for four years in a row. The name is romantic sounding and sweet, with a sturdy, loyal meaning of “strong protector.” The traditional Irish form of the name is Uilliam, whereas the original Germanic is William. Liam is a shortened version of both, sounding modern and classic at the same time.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Strong protector, guardian
  • Variations: William, Uilliam
  • Popularity: Liam was the most popular boy’s name in the US in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020! Prior to that, it had been in the top 100 most popular names since 2006 and the top 1000 since 1967.
Popular, Short, Cool

Mack

Mack means “son” in Gaelic and, as well as being a common surname as it is, it is also used as a prefix in countless Scottish or Irish surnames, either as Mc- (like McDonald) or Mac- (like MacLaren). If your child is a descendent of a Mac-Lineage, it could make a sweet middle or even given name to commemorate this history. Also, its meaning makes for a delightfully literal namesake for your new male offspring. Just be cautious he doesn’t go on to be nicknamed “Big Mack” after the burger!

  • Origin: Irish, Scottish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Son
  • Variations: Maccus, Mac
Short, Cool

Murphy

Cool, sweet, and joyful, Murphy is a great name for any man. Most traditionally a surname – and the most common one in Ireland at that – Murphy’s origins actually lie in the given name Murchadh. Murphy is a much more modern-sounding and accessible alternative, but it keeps Murchadh’s rather awesome meaning of “sea-warrior.” A badass and stormy meaning for such a precious name, but one we’re sure you’ll love.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Sea warrior
  • Pronunciation: mur-fee
  • Variations: Murchadh
  • Namesakes: Murphy J. Foster, the 31st Governor of Louisiana.
  • Popularity: Murphy is the most common surname in the Republic of Ireland!
Joyful, Stylish

Murtagh

Murtagh is a strong, confident, and manly name of Irish and Gaelic origins. Meaning “mariner” or “navigator,” Murtagh sounds assured and logical, as though he’s the kind of guy you’d want to take with you on an adventure. Although Murtagh may be subject to the nickname Murt, the full version of this regal name is easy enough to pronounce and remember, much more so than its original Gaelic form, Muirchertach.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Mariner, navigator
  • Pronunciation: mur-tah
  • Namesakes: St Murtagh, an Irish bishop.
Strong, Pure

Niall

Niall – not to be confused with the African river – is the original Irish Gaelic form of the name Neil. Its root is in the word “niadh,” which means “champion,” making Niall an awesome name for winners! Celebrate the jubilant arrival of your baby by giving him the simple but handsome name, Niall.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Champion
  • Variations: Neil, Nigel
Short, Stylish

Nolan

Nolan is a popular Irish surname-turned-given name for a baby boy, and we can see why! With a strong pronunciation, anglicized spelling, and meaning of “champion,” Nolan is a name for winners. If you’re looking for matching names to give to the rest of your clan, you could also consider using the Irish Lonan too!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Champion, noble
  • Namesakes: Nolan North, an American actor. Nolan Bushnell, an American engineer and entrepreneur. Christopher Nolan, a British-American movie director.
  • Popularity: Nolan is a popular name in the US, ranking in the top 100 most popular boy names from 2011-2020.
Regal, Popular, Stylish

Nollaig

Nollaig is a simply delightful name and about as festive as they come. Meaning “Christmas” in Irish, Nollaig brings all the warmth of joy, family, and laughter. For a baby born during the holiday season, or especially on December 25th, this is the perfect name to consider if you’re hunting for an Irish male name. Forget Noel, Nollaig is more unique and uncommon outside of Ireland and has a deliciously soft and sweet ring to it.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Christmas
  • Pronunciation: null-ig
Strong, Joyful

Odhran

With the meaning of “little pale green one,” Odhran may sound somewhat alien as a name, but we assure you it is a cool, popular, and brilliant name to bless upon a little boy. Many saints have borne the name Odhran, one of whom was a disciple and friend of Saint Patrick. In the US, Orin may be a more commonly-recognized alternative, but the pronunciations are close enough that Odhran won’t be a hard name for acquaintances to pick up on.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little pale green one
  • Pronunciation: oh-ran, oh-rawn
  • Variations: Orin, Oran
  • Popularity: Odhran is a very popular masculine given name in Ireland, especially in recent years. Odhran first entered the top 100 most popular name chart in 2008, dropping in 2018 but re-entering in 2019.
Cool, Pure

Oisin

Oisin is a beautiful and traditional Irish name rooted in Irish mythology. According to legend, Oisin was the son of the warrior Fionn mac Cumhaill and the goddess Sadhbh. He was raised in the forest, thus giving the name the meaning of “little deer.” This adorable animal meaning connotes freedom, youthfulness, and innocence, magical sentiments to pass on to your baby son through his name. And, you’ll no doubt have great fun reading up on the legend of Oisin together as he grows up! The spelling of the name can be anglicized to Osheen to reflect its pronunciation, but we think the traditional Oisin is too perfect to alter.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little deer
  • Pronunciation: osh-een
  • Variations: Osheen, Ossian
  • Namesakes: Oisín, an Irish mythological warrior.
Mythological, Animals, Pure
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Padraig

Padraig is the traditionally Irish Gaelic form of the more commonly-heard Patrick. After all, there’s no “d” in Patrick, so where did you think Paddy derived from on March 17th? There are a couple of pronunciation variations to choose from with Padraig, neither of which are completely obvious for an anglicized reader looking at the name, but both are strong, traditional, and handsome.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Noble, nobleman
  • Pronunciation: PAH-drig, POR-rick
  • Variations: Patrick, Padraic, Paddy
Strong, Cool

Peadar

Peadar is the Irish form of the name Peter, which originally derived from the Greek boy’s name Petros. A fair few Irish politicians have borne the name, which is a unique and daring alternative to the much-more commonly heard Peter. Meaning “rock,” Peadar is nature-inspired and a great way of signifying your solid, sturdy love for your new son.

  • Origin: Irish, Scottish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Rock
  • Pronunciation: pad-ar
  • Variations: Peter, Piaras, Peadair
Nature-inspired, Pure

Phelan

Phelan, like Whelan, is derived from the Irish surname O Faolian and has become recognized as a cool, modern, masculine given name, too. Its meaning of “wolf” makes the name rugged and feisty, whilst its soft pronunciation options allow it to be sweet and calming at the same time.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Wolf
  • Pronunciation: fee-lan, fwail-awn
  • Variations: Finn, Fionn, Faolan
Animals, Stylish

Piran

Piran is one of those names that sounds modern and stylish, despite being very uncommon as a given name in the US. It may be because it sounds so similar to more popular names such as Kieron or maybe Perry. A great namesake would be Saint Piran, a 5th-century Irish monk who is known as being the patron saint of Cornwall. Meaning “prayer,” Piran is beautifully soft and spiritual whilst being a great crossover name for a baby with both Cornish and Irish heritage.

  • Origin: Irish, Cornish
  • Meaning: Prayer
  • Namesakes: St Piran, the patron saint of Cornwall.
Unique, Stylish

Proinsias

Similarly to the Latin boy’s name Francis, Proinsias is a great name for honoring French heritage in your new baby boy. After all, Proinsias means “little Frenchman,” although you wouldn’t think it to hear it. For a baby born with both Irish and French heritage running through his veins, naming him Proinsias would be a lovely nod to this and a sweet way to ensure he always knows his roots, wherever he goes. We aren’t sure what nicknames would end up deriving from Proinsias, so hopefully, it’ll stay in its full, traditional, and majestic form.

  • Origin: Irish, Latin
  • Meaning: Little French one
  • Pronunciation: prun-shee-is
  • Variations: Francis
Locational, Unique

Quinn

Quinn is derived from the same Irish roots as Conn, offering noble, wise connotations and the meanings of “chief” or “counsel.” Quinn sounds effortlessly cool and modern, despite being rooted in historical Ireland, and has particularly taken off as a popular name for both males and females in the US.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Chief, counsel
  • Variations: Conn
  • Popularity: Although more common as a female name in recent years, Quinn remains a popular masculine name in the US, according to data from SSA.
Short, Stylish

Rafferty

Rafferty is a cool and unique surname-turned-given-name, whose original form was the Irish Rabhartach. This means “flood tide,” which is a rather unusual meaning to associate with a name, but Rafferty is also said to signify “prosperity.” Either way, Rafferty sounds fun and appealing and would sound truly awesome when coupled with a short surname.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Flood tide, or prosperity
  • Variations: Rabhartach, Rafe, Raffey
  • Namesakes: Gerry Rafferty, a Scottish singer-songwriter.
Cool, Stylish

Reilly

Reilly is rooted in Irish Gaelic origin, holding the strong and noble meaning of “brave” or “outgoing.” A common variant on the name is Riley, which is actually from an Old English root, meaning “rye clearing.” Although the latter may be the much more popular version of the name, we think the Irish Reilly has a much more appealing meaning, with a recognizable but considerably more uncommon spelling. Both can be used for males or females, and if you’re not fussed about keeping with tradition, there’s plenty of room to play with spellings here.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Brave, outgoing
  • Variations: Riley, Rylee, Ryleigh
  • Popularity: Riley is a popular name for both boys and girls. As a masculine name, it has comfortably ranked within the top 1000 names in the US since 1900. For girls, however, it is much more popular in recent years, having spent all of the 2000s to 2020 in the top 100 names. Reilly is a significantly more uncommonly-spelled variant of the name, peaking only as of the 806th most popular male name in the US, back in 1997.
Strong, Popular, Stylish

Rian

Rian is the traditional Irish spelling of the name Ryan, a timelessly popular name throughout the English-speaking world. Its meaning is “king,” or “little king,” which is a sweet name to give your new little majesty – who’s likely to be ruling your life from now on! The name actually comes from the Irish surname Ó Riain and may also be spelled Rioghan as a strong, confident variation. Short and sweet, Rian is classic, attractive, and pure, and a name you simply can’t go wrong with for any cool little boy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: King
  • Pronunciation: ree-an, ry-an
  • Variations: Ryan, Rioghan
  • Popularity: Rian is a very popular name in Ireland, ranking in the top 50 most popular masculine names throughout the 2010s.
Popular, Short, Cool

Riordan

Rhythmic and classy, Riordan is a brilliant name for an intelligent little boy. The name is derived from Irish and Gaelic elements, which translate to both “poet” or “bard” and “king,” making Riordan a perfectly regal, intellectual option for a budding genius. Poets, after all, are always admired. But, even if Riordan doesn’t grow up to be a lyrical legend, at least he’ll have a stylish, awesome name to show off instead.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Poet king
  • Variations: Rearden
Regal, Stylish, Unique
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Ronan

Ronan is a name that sounds romantic and dreamy whilst holding a rich Irish Gaelic heritage of royalty and saints to explore. Its unique meaning of “little seal” conjures up coastal imagery of cute baby marine mammals – perhaps not what you think of when you look at your baby boy, but adorable nonetheless!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little seal
  • Namesakes: Ronan Keating, an Irish singer. Ronan Farrow, an American journalist. Rónán mac Colmáin, an early 7th-century Irish king.
  • Popularity: Ronan is steadily becoming a more popular name in the US, having broken into the SSA top baby name charts in 2001 at rank 861.
Animals, Popular, Attractive

Ross

Ross is a simple, easygoing name of Gaelic origin, meaning “headland.” Although you may hear the name and instantly think of the popular US sitcom Friends, we assure you that Ross is a cool, masculine name in its own right. Ross is a common surname and can be associated with the floral, pretty feminine names Rosalind or Rosie, too.

  • Origin: Gaelic, Irish, Scottish, German
  • Meaning: Headland
  • Variations: Ros
Short, Nature-inspired

Rourke

Although its original meaning remains uncertain, Rourke is a cool, earthy given name you must consider for your little boy. Rourke dates back to ancient times and was used as a traditional Irish clan name. A variation on Rourke would be Roark, which is a Gaelic name meaning “champion.” Rourke sounds masculine and handsome, but don’t let its lack of known meaning put you off. Instead, let Rourke write his own meaning – it’s much more personal that way, anyway.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Meaning unknown
  • Pronunciation: rork
  • Variations: Roark
Unique, Cool

Rowan

Meaning “little red one,” Rowan is a delightful, romantic, and earthy name to bless upon a baby boy or girl. Also the name of a tree, the rowan is a pretty deciduous shrub, which bears clusters of scarlet berries in the autumn. The tree features in various tales of folklore throughout the world, for instance, in Norse mythology, it is said that the first woman was made from a rowan tree. In Britain, the tree is understood to protect against evil enchantments. Protective, fiery, or magical, Rowan is a stunning and stylish name.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Little red one
  • Variations: Roan, Rohan
  • Namesakes: Saint Rowan, a 6th-century Irish abbot and saint. Rowan Atkinson, an English actor and comedian.
Nature-inspired, Stylish

Ruairi

Ruairi is a sweet but wild-sounding name, traditionally Irish and the original form of the adorable Rory. It is etymologically composed of the Irish elements “ruadh” and “ri,” meaning “red” and “king,” respectively. Whether your baby boy has inherited flame-red hair or is just a feisty little bean with pep, he’s bound to live up to the perfectly majestic meaning of “red king.” The name Ruairi is bound to be met with admiration and is a perfect Irish masculine name to bless upon your son.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Red king, red-haired king
  • Variations: Rory
Unique, Stylish, Pure

Seamus

Seamus is a beautiful and traditional Irish name with pure, earthy connotations. Its meaning is “supplanter,” which may or may not be the most desirable meaning for such a velvety name, but Seamus is free to write his own history. As perfectly put by the incredible, Nobel Prize-winning Irish poet Seamus Heaney: “Walk on air against your better judgment.”

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Supplanter
  • Pronunciation: SHAY-mus
  • Variations: James, Seumas
  • Namesakes: Seamus Heaney, an Irish Nobel Prize-winning poet.
Cool, Pure

Senan

Senan is an airy but strong Irish boy’s name. The name means “old” and “wise,” which are probably not adjectives that come to mind as you gaze upon your perfect new baby boy. However, this meaning seems to hold strength, honor, and nobleness about it which would be beautiful to bless upon your son.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Old, wise
  • Namesakes: Saint Senan, an Irish saint, priest, and educator.
Cool, Stylish, Unique

Shay

Shay is a stylish, unisex name, with the all-glowing meaning of “esteemed,” or “magic.” A variation of Seamus, Shay sounds like it should be short for something but is actually a perfectly awesome name in its own right. If you prefer shorter names that already come nickname-proof, Shay is a great option, with a sweet, Irish Gaelic flair that you’re sure to love.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Esteemed, majestic
  • Variations: Séaghdha, Shae, Seamus
Regal, Unique

Sullivan

Sullivan started life as the Irish Gaelic clan name Ó Súilleabháin, which is best associated with the southwest of Ireland. It makes a strong and quirky given name, with its three syllables easily shortened to the amicable Sully. Sullivan’s meaning of “dark-eyed” makes the name seem somewhat mysterious and intriguing, so we can’t wait to see how baby Sullivan grows up to be.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Dark-eyed
Cool, Stylish

Taber

Meaning “well,” Taber is a wonderful name to give to your new little wish-come-true. The name sounds modern and masculine, with it’s hard T- beginning softened with the b- start to the second syllable. Taber is a surname as well as a given name and would even make for a cool middle name too!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Well
Unique, Cool
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Tadhg

Once Tadhg has corrected the unfamiliar acquaintances determined to pronounce his name Tag or Tad, the world will likely be full of admiration as to the striking nature of this noble name. Its unique meaning of “storyteller” or “poet” brings a creative streak, for Tadhg is an Irish masculine name to wear with pride.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Bard, poet, storyteller
  • Pronunciation: ti-gue
  • Popularity: Tadhg was the 40th most common name given to baby boys born in Ireland in 2010, although this popularity is yet to reach the US.
Short, Unique, Cool

Tiernan

Tiernan is such a cool, awesome name for a regal “little lord.” It is a punchy name with bite, although Tierney is an equally lovely name if you’d prefer something a bit softer. For a unique, Irish-influenced choice of name for your new center of attention, Tiernan is a great choice.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Little lord
  • Pronunciation: TEER-nan
  • Variations: Tighearnán, Tierney
  • Namesakes: Tommy Tiernan, an Irish comedian.
Stylish, Unique, Regal

Tigernach

Anyone whose name starts with the word “tiger” is destined to be awesome, so Tigernach is certainly an option you’ll want to add to your Irish baby name contender list! Saint Tigernach was an early Irish saint with links to not just Ireland but also Wales and Scotland. The name sounds majestic and intriguing, although it may come as a surprise from its spelling that Tigernach is only spoken as two syllables.

  • Origin: Lord
  • Meaning: Regal, Unique
  • Pronunciation: TEER-nakh
  • Variations: Tighearnach
  • Namesakes: Saint Tigernach of Clones, an early Irish patron saint.
Unique, Cool, Strong

Torin

Torin is a strong, stylish name of Irish origin, sounding all-powerful and self-aware. Meaning “chief,” Torin is a great name for the new little leader in your life. It would be fun to name this to a son borne by a mother named Tori, short for Victoria, as a way of carrying on a family nickname.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Chief
  • Variations: Thorin, Toryn
Strong, Cool

Troi

Famously, Troy is the name of the ancient Greek city and location of the historical Trojan wars. In Ireland, the names Troy or Troi were given to the migrants from the French city of Troyes, holding the meaning of “descendant of the footsoldier.” Troy has been an immensely popular name for decades – and understandably so, being so short, sweet, and stylish. Mix it up a bit by opting to use the variant spelling of Troi for your little boy.

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Descendant of the footsoldier
  • Variations: Troy
  • Popularity: Troy is a consistently popular name in the US, having ranked in the top 50 most popular names ever since 1900. Troi is a lesser-used spelling.
Short, Cool, Popular

Turlough

If you like the traditional Irish Gaelic boy’s name Toirdhealbhach but find it too much of a mouthful, consider Turlough as a cool, stylish-sounding option for your son instead. Pronounced “tur-lock,” Turlough is sharp-sounding but attractive. You may also recognize the name as being a type of unique lake found in Ireland, which forms when it rains but dries up to “disappear” shortly after.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: One who assists, instigator
  • Pronunciation: tur-lock
  • Variations: Toirdhealbhach, Terry
  • Namesakes: Turlough Convery, a Northern Irish actor. Turlough O Carolan, a 17th-century Irish harper.
Pure, Cool

Ultan

If you or your family hail from the historical north Irish region of Ulster, why not consider Ultan as a fun name for your little boy? With the literal translation of “from Ulster,” this traditional Irish name offers a great nod to your hometown. As well as this, there were two 7th-century Irish saints who bore the name, offering it a spiritual, historical flair, too. U- names are fairly uncommon for boys, but the masculine jolt of this two-syllable name is certain to stand out as stylish.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: One from Ulster
  • Namesakes: Saint Ultan, an Irish monk. Saint Ultan of Ardbraccan, an Irish abbot.
Locational, Stylish

Veon

Veon is a unique Irish name, meaning “sky.” Its day-dreamy, airy meaning is somehow contrasted by its hipster, retro sound, making this name definitely one-of-a-kind. V- names are almost always considered to be awesome, and when mixed with the electro-style swagger of this name, you’ve definitely uncovered an Irish gem to give to your badass little guy.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Sky
  • Variations: Veyon, Taveon
Unique, Cool

Verlin

Verlin is an uncommon name of Irish origin, holding the sweet meaning of “farthing coin.” Of course, we don’t pay for anything with farthings anymore, but that just gives new life to the cool-sounding name Verlin! The fact that Verlin rhymes with Merlin makes the name come across as almost magical and mythological, which it isn’t, but we still appreciate the mysterious sound to the rhythmic V- name.

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Farthing coin
  • Variations: Verling
Pure, Unique

Whelan

Like Phelan, Whelan is a family name derived from the traditional Irish surname Ó Faoláin. Although uncommon as a given name, we think Whelan would make a cool first or even middle name for a baby boy, especially if used in honor of a family namesake. Meaning “wolf,” Whelan is soft but with bite, deliciously rugged and mysterious whilst also sharp and wise. Perfect for a baby born on the night of a full moon, perhaps?

  • Origin: Irish, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Wolf
  • Variations: Phelan, Faolan
Pure, Animals
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Irish Names FAQs

What are Some Unique Irish Boy Names?

Unique names are often the most sought-after choices when naming a new baby boy, and there are plenty of awesome Irish masculine names to consider. How about Tigernach, which means “regal” and “unique,” or perhaps Calhoun, made popular for being the surname of the 7th Vice President of the US? We also like Ailill, Daithi, and Fiadh for their airy sounding natures and Conchobhar for their power.

What is the Most Popular Irish Name for a Boy?

Liam is probably the most popular Irish name for a boy, ranking as the single most popular male name in the US between 2017 and 2020, and is consistently popular throughout Ireland and England. Its great meaning of “strong protector” is warm and sturdy, and we love this name for a baby boy.

What Name Means Warrior in Irish?

Alaois is a great Irish boy name, meaning “warrior.” If you’re looking for a feisty name perfect for your own little trooper, you could also consider Murphy, which means “sea warrior,” or Donncha, which means “brown-haired warrior!”

What Are Some Irish Last Names?

There are plenty of Irish surnames – or clan names – out there, many of which have evolved into popular first names, too. Murphy is the most common surname in Ireland and has been for decades. Kelly, O’Brien, and O’Sullivan are also common, as well as the O’Connor and O’Neill names.

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About the Author

Madeleine Lily Webb

Madeleine is a writer from somewhere near Manchester, England. Madeleine's background in languages and linguistics has led to baby names becoming one of her favorite topics to write about. When she's not fallen down a rabbit hole of stories behind unique names, Madeleine can be found hanging out with her cat, taking photos of flowers, or dancing.
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