While we think of Irish names as being Patrick, Brian, Caitlin and Ciara, or unpronounceable Gaelic gems like Aithche, Moirna, and Nuadha, in reality Irish families are naming their kids many of the same things American's are, with a few exceptions. What names are actually popular in Ireland right now?
Pretty typical over all. although of course you wont find Harry, Ryan or Chloe anywhere near the top 10 here in America. If you are looking for something a big more exotic though, you do not have to venture far outside the top ten. For boys, Oisin, Cian, Darragh, and Cillian all come in the top 25, while for girls Aoife, Caoimhe, and Saoirse make the same cut.
Oisin - Pronounced "oh-sheen", this name is from Gaelic mythology, son of a legendary warrior and a goddess. The name means "little deer"
Cian - Pronounced "Key-in", this name means ancient or enduring. While not currently in the top ten, it has been in the past and is on a down swing in popularity.
Darragh - Pronounced "die-rah", this name means fruitful or fertile. This is also used as a girls name with alternate spelling Daire or Dara.
Cillian - Pronounced like Killian, this name makes me think of the beer (Killian's Red). It means "associated with the church". There is a St Cillian who left Ireland to convert German tribes.
Aoife - Pronounced like Ee-Fa, this is Irish spelling of Eva. It means Beautiful, Radiant, or joyful.
Caoimhe - Pronounced like "Key-vah", this is a female version of Kevin and means "gently, beautiful, preciuos".
Saoirse - Pronounced "sir-sha", this is a "word as a name, it is the Gaelic word for freedom or liberty. Its use as a name is relatively new and is very patriotic.
I also though, just for fun, why not pull the stats for Northern Ireland? So here those are! Very similar, but not identical, to those of Ireland.
Happy Saint Patrick's Day!!