Many lovely names of the rich Irish culture have endured throughout the centuries. Giving your new baby girl one of these unique names will almost certainly ensure that there aren't two or three other little friends sharing the same name with her later on, and you also have the opportunity to give her a name with a specific meaning behind it.
Girls' Traditional Irish Names
The following chart contains a nice selection of classic Irish names for girls. The list is in no way comprehensive, but you should still be able to find plenty of naming inspiration for your baby.
|Afric||africk||none||11th century Irish name|
|Aibreann||av-rawn||April||Month of April|
|Aine||awn-ya||Ann, Anne||Radiance or joy|
|Aoife||ee-fa||Eve||Beautiful or radiant|
|Doireann||dirren||Darina||Fruitful or sullen|
|Eilís||isle-esh||Elizabeth||"My God is a vow"|
|Isolde||ee-solde||none||May refer to the Celtic Goddess Adsulata|
|Maebh||may-vuh||Maeve||Bringer of great joy|
|Muadnait||mwa-naht||Monica||Little noble one|
|Niamh||neev||Neve||Radiance or brilliance|
|Sorcha||sork-ah||none||Medieval Irish name|
|Talulla||ta-lu-lah||Tallulah||Prosperous lady, abundance|
|Una||oona||Winifred||Lamb or one|
Traditional vs. Modern
Celtic baby names hearken back to generations past, and some even go back for hundreds of years. It's important to give careful consideration to any name you select for your baby girl because she's going to carry it for the rest of her life. Do you want her to have an old-fashioned Irish name, or would a modern version of that name suit her better? Taking a closer look at meanings, pronunciations and spellings of various names can help you decide.
Over the centuries, many traditional Irish names have been modernized, and this usually alters the name's original meaning. So, one of the toughest decisions to make is whether to select a name that stays true to Gaelic tradition, or select one that has been altered to a more modern form. Your decision ultimately depend on just how important a particular name's meaning is to you.
For example, Ann is often used to replace the traditional name Aine. However, they are two completely different names with two different meanings. As noted in the table above, Aine means radiance or joy, while Ann typically means favored or gracious.
Pronunciation and Spelling
Pronunciation and spelling are also points to consider. Traditional Irish girl names have unusual spellings and pronunciations that could prove a bit difficult for family an friends to get used to. For example, Aibreann is pronounced av-rawn. It's a lovely name, but its modern counterpart, April, is certainly simpler to pronounce and spell.
It's a Personal Choice
Whether you are searching for an unusual name for your little girl, a meaningful name, or both, an Irish name can be a wonderful choice. This is especially true if you plan for your child's name to reflect a bit of her Irish heritage. Take your time trying out these names, and see how well they roll off your tongue. Chances are you'll find the perfect name for your bundle of joy.