The best Irish baby names for boys and girls.

At last count, approximately one in three Australians claimed Irish ancestry. And I’m one of them.

My twin sister, Clare, was named after County Clare in Ireland, where my mum’s side of the family comes from.

Names like Isla, Abbey, Connor and Finn, all have an Irish etiology and continue to rise in popularity. Here are our favourite Irish names for boys and girls.

Here are our favourite Irish baby names. Image via iStock.


  1. Conor

Conor is an Anglicised version of the Gaelic name "Conchobhar" which translates as "dog lover" or "wolf lover". Historically, it has been the name of many Irish Kings.

      2. Nolan

Nolan comes from the Gaelic word "nuall" which means "nobleman". This year, it has seen a resurgence in popularity in the United States.

     3. Darragh

Pronounced dah-rah, Darragh is derived from the Irish term "doire" which translates as "rascal". In Ireland, it is a male or female name.


      4. Cian 

Pronounced kee-an, Cian is one of the oldest Irish names and translates as "ancient" in Gaelic. It was the name of a mythical ancestor in Irish legend.

      5. Fionn

Pronounced Fin, the name literally translates to mean "fair-headed". Fionn is associated with a warrior in Irish folklore, who was strong, brave, generous and wise.

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  1. Quinn

Over the past decade, Quinn has risen in popularity. It is derived from the Gaelic "O-Cuinn", and means wisdom, intelligence and reason.

      2. Niamh

Pronounce neev, Niamh is also spelled Neeve, Neve or Nieve. Niamh means brightness and radiance, and in Irish mythology she was synonymous with radiating gold hair.

      3. Saoirse

Saoirse is pronounced ser-sha, and emerged as a popular name in the early 20th century. It translates to mean "freedom" and "liberty".

      4. Clodagh

Pronounced clo-da, Clodagh was a female deity in Irish mythology. In Ireland there is a River Clodagh.

      5. Aisling 

Pronounced ash-ling, Aisling comes from the Gaelic word "aislinge" which means "dream". It has only begun being used as a first name in the last century.

As someone with Irish in my blood - which I am reminded every time the sun comes out - some of these names are very appealing.

And I'm willing to overlook how torturous the name 'Saoirse' will be for Kindergarten teachers everywhere.

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