Anglicizations of Irish Names




Here are some common anglicizations of Irish names. An anglicization is a name normally spelled in Irish Gaelic that has been re-spelled into English to make the pronunciation easier for English speakers. Some of them are more common than their Irish counterparts (like Finbar for Fionnbharr). Some have fallen into obscurity (like Derry for Daire).

If you haven't done so already, non-Irish speakers please see the the pronunciation guide.

Name Original Irish Form Meaning
Aidan Aodhan, Aodan diminutive of Aodh, "fire"
Ardal Ardghal from ard "height" + gal "valor"
Barry Bairre, Barra diminutive of Bairrfhionn or Fionnbharr (barr "head" + fionn white")
Brendan Breandán from Welsh meaning "prince"
Brian, Bryan Brían, Bríon possibly from Celtic Brigonos "noble; high"
Carbry Cairbre possibly, "charioteer" or "bearer"
Conleth Connlaodh possibly from connla "chaste" or "prudent" + Aodh "fire" [Celtic fire god]
Connell Conall "strong as a wolf"
Conor Conchobhar "lover of hounds; wolves"
Cormac Cormac corb "raven," "charioteer" or "defiler" + mac "son"
Dary, Darragh Dáire "fruitful; fertile"
Davan Damhán dam "stag; ox" + diminutive ending
Declan Deaglán meaning is obscure, perhaps "full of goodness"
Dermot Diarmuid, Diarmaid meaning is obscure, perhaps "without injunction or envy," "freeman" or "charioteer"
Donagh Donnchadh donn "brown" + cath "battle"
Donal Domhnall, Dónal "world mighty" or "world-ruler"
Dougal Dubhgall dubh "black" + gall "foreigner; stranger"
Eamon Éamon(n), Éamann from Edmund, "wealthy guardian"
Enda Éanna possibly, "birdlike"
Ernan Earnán possibly from iarn, "iron"
Eveny Aibhne meaning is unknown
Ever Éibhear from Latin eberus meaning "Irishman"
Evin Éimhín "prompt, ready"
Fergal Fearghal fear "man" + gal "valor"
Fergus Fearghus fear "man" + gus "victor"
Finbar Fionnbharr barr "head" + fionn white"
Finian Finnén "white; fair-haired; pale"
Finn Fionn "white; fair-haired, pale"
Fintan Fiontán "white ancient," or "white fire"
Flann Flann "fiery red"
Fursey Fursa meaning is unknown
Garvan, Garvin Garbhán garb "rough"
Gilbrennan Giolla Bhréanain "servant of St. Brendan"
Gilbride Giolla Bhríde "Servant of St. Brigid"
Gilcole, Gilcowell Giolla Chomhghaill "Servant of St. Comhghall"
Gileece Giolla Íosa "Servant of Jesus"
Gilkelly Giolla Cheallaigh "Servant of St. Ceallach"
Gilligan Gilleagán "little lad"
Iarla, Irla Iarfhlaith a element meaning, possibly "western" or "tributary" + flaith "lord"
Irial Irial, Irél meaning is unknown
Ivar Íobhar "yew tree"
Jarlath Iarfhlaith a element meaning, possibly "western" or "tributary" + flaith "lord"
Kean, Kian Cian "ancient" or "enduring"
Kenneth Cináed could be from cion "respect; love" + Aodh [Celtic fire god] or be possibly from an unknown Pictish word.
Kevin Caoimhín from either caem "beautiful; beloved" or cóem "gentle; kind" + gaem  "birth"
Kieran Ciarán from ciar, "black" + diminutive ending
Kilian, Killian Cillian possibly from cill "church" or ceallach, "strife"
Lasarian Laisréan from lassar "flame; fire"
Leary Laoghaire "calf-herd"
Lennan Leannán "sweetheart; lover"
Liam Uilliam short form of Uilliam, the Irish form of William
Lochlan, Laughlin Lochlainn "viking" [i.e., one from the land of the lochs]
Loman Lomán "bare"
Lonan Lonán "blackbird"
Lorcan Lorccán from lorc, "silent" or "cruel; fierce"
Malachy Maeleachlainn "devotee of St. Sechnall"
Malone Mael Eoin "devotee of St. John"
Marcan Marcán from marc "steed" + diminutive ending
Murtagh Muircheratach "skilled in seacraft; mariner"
Nathy Naithí meaning is unknown
Neil Niall possibly from nél, "cloud" or elements meaning "passionate; vehement" or "champion"
Nessan Neasán possibly, "a stoat"
Nevan Naomhán from naomh, "saint; holy one"
Nisha, Neesh, Nishi Naoise possibly from nasc "bond."
Ogan, Hogan Ógán óg "young" + dimunitive ending
Oran Odhrán "sallow; dark; grey-brown"
Oscar Osgar os, "deer" + cara, "friend"
Ossian Oisín os "deer" + diminutive ending
Owen Eoin, Eoghan Eoin is a form of John, Eoghan means "born of the yew"
Patrick Pádraig from Latin, 'noble man'
Pierce/Pearse Piaras from Greek Peter, 'rock'
Roark, Ruarke Ruarc possibly from arc, "hero; champion" or ruarc "rainstorm." Alternately, it may be from Hroekr "famous power," a name brought by Norse settlers.
Ronan Rónán rón, "seal" + diminutive ending
Rory Ruadhrí rúad "red; red-haired" + "king; royal"
Rowan, Rohan Ruadhán rúad, "red haired" + diminutive ending
Shaun, Shane Seán from Hebrew Yochanan (John): 'God is gracious'
Shay from sé, "hawk"
Sorley Somhairle from Norse Somarlithr, "summer wanderer"
Teague Tadhg "poet"
Tiernan Tiarnán tigern, "lord"; chief+ diminutive ending
Tierney Tiarnach tigern, "lord; chief"
Torcan Torcán "wild boar"
Turlough Toirdhealbhach "instigator; abettor"
Ultan Ultán "man from Ulster"