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27 Irish Baby Names That Are Cute and Classic

Deciding what to name your little one? Check out these cool Irish names for babies. It’s no wonder Gaelic-inspired baby names are hot right now!
ByMartina Garvey
Associate Editor
Updated
May 6, 2021
The Cliffs of Moher in Ireland landscape image.
Image: Getty Images

Irish baby names are super-popular around the world—and for good reason. Ireland, nicknamed the land of saints and scholars, may be small, but it’s had a huge cultural impact on art, literature and music throughout the ages. And as people of Irish descent are scattered across the globe, Irish baby names have made a pretty big impact too. Although English is the primary language spoken in Ireland, many traditional baby names originate from the native Irish (also known as Gaelic) language, which is still widely used to this day and continues to influence naming traditions. Although some traditional names can be a little tricky to pronounce, there are plenty of Irish baby boy and girl names that are beautiful and easy to say. Whether you’re looking for baby names to honor your heritage or just love the sound of unique Celtic monikers, here you’ll find tons of cool Irish names for babies.

Irish Baby Girl Names

Searching for unique names for your little lass? From celebrity-inspired names to ancient monikers plucked from the pages of Celtic mythology, we’ve selected our favorite Irish baby names for girls that’ll delight and inspire you.

Fiadh

Pronounced “fee-ya” (the last two letters are silent, so think Mia with an “f”)

First up is an Irish baby girl name that’s taking the world by storm: Fiadh. According to the Irish Central Statistics Office (CSO), Fiadh was the second most popular girls’ name in Ireland in 2020. This ethereal Irish baby name is thought to come from the ancient Irish word for “wild,” so don’t say we didn’t warn you!

Saoirse

Pronounced “seer-sha”

Saoirse is the name of A-list Irish actress Saoirse Ronan. This name, which means “freedom” in Irish, appeared in the top 20 Irish baby girl names of 2020. It’s a great pick for adventurous parents looking for something different.

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Brigid

Pronounced “bridge-id

This traditional Irish baby name, which means “noble” or “exalted one,” comes from the story of Saint Brigid, who is celebrated every year on February 1st. We love this twist on the name Bridget—it’s unique!

Siofra

Pronounced “she-fra”

Siofra is a truly unique Irish baby name that means “changeling” or “fairy.” This magical name is relatively modern, and up until the twentieth century it would only have been found within the pages of fairy-tales.

Deirdre

Pronounced “deer-dra”

This Irish baby name is as traditional as it gets. The name Deirdre comes from the legendary tale Deirdre of the Sorrows. It has a rich cultural history and received a surge in popularity in the early twentieth century thanks to its use in plays by the famous Irish writers W.B. Yeats and J.M. Synge.

Siobhan

Pronounced “shiv-awn”

Siobhan is another classic moniker—it’s the female version of the name Sean and dates back to the twelfth century. Although it’s not as popular as it once was, Siobhan was in the top 100 baby girl names in Ireland for 40 years.

Caoimhe

Pronounced “kwee-va”

Caoimhe is a gorgeous name meaning “gentle, beautiful and precious.” No wonder its been in the top 50 Irish baby girl names since 1992. This name may be a tongue-twister but it’s oh-so-pretty.

Ciara

Pronounced “keer-ah”

Ciara is in the top 50 baby girl names in Ireland. It’s derived from the Irish word “ciar,” which means dark and implies dark hair and eyes. Like a lot of Irish names, it has numerous spellings. One such alternative spelling is Kiera, so if you’re a fan of the actress Keira Knightley, it’s perfect!

Maeve

Pronounced “may-veh”

You’re going to love the meaning behind this moniker. Maeve translates to “the cause of great joy”—and no one knows that feeling better than a new parent. This name can be traced back to the Irish myth of the warrior Queen Maedbh and has many alternate spellings, including Maedbh, Meabh and Maev.

Croía

Pronounced “cree-ah”

Croía is an Irish baby girl name derived from the Irish word “croí,” which means heart—how sweet! This heart-melting name has been steadily gaining popularity since the MMA star Conor McGregor named his youngest child Croía in 2019.

Irish Baby Boy Names

If you’re looking for baby boy names inspired by Celtic tradition, you’ve come to the right place. Here you’ll find some of the most popular baby names in Ireland, plus options inspired by literary heroes and Irish legends.

Conor

Pronounced “con-er”

Conor is a classic Irish baby boy name that never falls out of fashion. In fact, Conor has been listed in the top 10 baby names in Ireland for the last 20 years. This cute name is ideal for pet-loving parents as it translates to “dog-lover.”

Odhran

Pronounced “o-ran”

Odhran is a gorgeous Irish baby boy name, albeit one that can be hard to pronounce. This ancient name, which means “little pale green one,” has seen a recent resurgence in Ireland and we can see why.

Niall

Pronounced “nigh-al”

Niall means “champion” and, like many cool Irish names for babies, is featured prominently in Irish myth and legend.

Ronan

Pronounced “ro-nan”

Those with a fondness for the ocean and its aquatic life will go wild for this next pick. Ronan is a sweet baby name that means “little seal” in Irish.

Ciaran

Pronounced “keer-an”

Ciaran means “little dark one” and is the male version of the girls’ name Ciara mentioned above. You can spell this one with a “C” or a “K,” so take your pick!

Oscar

Pronounced “osk-er”

Looking for Irish baby names with a literary twist? The name Oscar, which means “friend of deer,” was made famous by one of Ireland’s greatest writers—yep, you’ve guessed it, the one and only Oscar Wilde.

Declan

Pronounced “deck-lan”

Declan is an Irish boys’ name that’s rooted in early Christian tradition. This name means “man of prayer” or “full of goodness.”

Fionn

Pronounced “fee-un” or “fin”

Fionn is a legendary name shared by one of the greatest heroes in Irish mythology: Fionn Mac Cumhaill. This cool moniker means “fair” and is a fabulous name for your little warrior.

Colm

Pronounced “coll-um”

Colm is a simple name derived from the Irish word for “dove”—it’s a beautiful name for your gentle baby boy.

Liam

Pronounced “lee-um”

A form of William, the name Liam means “helmet of will” or “guardian.” This strong Irish baby boy name is popular worldwide, with many celebrities (think: the actor Liam Neeson or Liam Payne from One Direction fame) boasting the name.

Shane

Pronounced “shayn”

This Irish baby name is derived from the Gaelic name “Seán” and means “God is gracious.” Although this is typically used as a boys’ name in Ireland, it would be equally cute for a baby girl.

Gender-Neutral Irish Baby Names

Searching for Irish baby names that work for all genders? You’re in luck! There are plenty of beautiful gender-neutral names to choose from. Read on to discover our top picks, including some utterly adorable nature-inspired names.

Aidan

Pronounced “ay-duhn”

The name Aidan, which means “little fire,” is a classic baby name that’s popular in Ireland and abroad. Aidan is the anglicized version of the Irish name Aodhan, whose fiery meaning comes from Aodh, the Celtic god of sun and fire. This name has many different spellings, including Aaden, Aiden and Aayden—simply pick your favorite.

Shannon

Pronounced “shan-on”

Shannon is a beautiful name inspired by the longest river in Ireland. It comes from the Irish phrase meaning “wise river” and works perfectly for baby girls and boys.

Rian

Pronounced “ree-an” or “ryan”

Rian is a trendy gender-neutral name that recently entered the top 100 baby names in Ireland. There is some debate over the true meaning of this ancient moniker, but many people believe that it comes from the old Irish word for king—perfect for your little prince or princess.

Brannagh

Pronounced “bran-a” (the last two letters are silent)

Nature-inspired names are definitely having a moment right now, which is why we love the name Brannagh, taken from the Irish word for “raven.” Can’t deal with the silent letters? Don’t worry, you can also use the spelling Branna.

Nollaig

Pronounced “null-eg”

If your due date is in winter, you may like the name Nollaig, which is the Irish word for Christmas and a popular baby name to boot.

Rory

Pronounced “roar-ee”

Rory, meaning “red” or “rust-colored,” would make an adorable name for babies born with red hair. This name has deep roots in tradition and the last high king of Ireland went by the old-Irish version, “Ruaidrí.” Whether your baby is a boy or a girl, this regal name still works.

Looking for more baby name ideas? Check out all of the lists and fun naming tools available on The Bump .

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