Most folks would agree, the cutest of all Irish gifts is a new baby in the family. Spring is the season when we seem to think more about babies, and Ireland’s Central Statistics Office has helpfully released their data on the most popular baby names in Ireland from last year.
Maybe because the second year of the pandemic left us in such a weird state of feeling like everything was both stalled and perilous, the lists of the most frequently chosen baby names for boys and girls in Ireland didn’t change dramatically from 2020. Jack held the top spot for boys, while Fiadh moved from second to first place for girls, trading places with Grace. For boys, Noah went from third to second place, swapping with James, while Conor crept from fifth to fourth place. On the girls list, Emily held steady in third place, and Sophie remained in fourth.
Irish Names to Watch
Ten new boy names entered the top 100 this year, compared to only three for girls. None of those three new girl names are traditionally Irish names (Indie, Ayla and Lottie), but the boys list is considerably more Celtic. Those names are Teddy, Daithí, Páidí, Jaxon, Brody, Ted, Hunter, Tadgh, Tiernan and Arlo.
Tadgh, which went from 101 to 92, is a variation of Tadhg, which went from 18 to 10. Whichever spelling is used, this very ancient Irish name means poet or philosopher. Daíthí was the last pagan king of Ireland. While it is sometimes used as an Irish alternative to David, it means ‘swift’ while the Biblical name David means ‘beloved’. Páidí is the Irish language version of Paddy, a diminutive of Patrick (19th place). The list includes six different spelling variations for the Irish form – Padhraic, Padhraig, Padraic, Padraig, Padraigh and Padraig. Tiernan is a traditional surname that has evolved into a lovely first name.
On the girls’ side of the list, Éabha hopped from 16th to fifth place. It’s the Irish for Eve, meaning life. A very positive and affirming name in difficult times! Saoirse, meaning ‘freedom’, and Caoimhe, the Irish feminine of Kevin meaning ‘dear’ or ‘noble’, are holding steady in the mid-20s on the list. Croía leapt from 95 to 52. It comes from the Irish word for ‘heart’.
Irish Gifts for New Arrivals
Shopping for presents for a new baby is such fun! Sometimes parents have very specific ideas of the type and style of things they want for their little one, and sometimes they already have loads of baby gear, clothes and toys because this isn’t their first. But whether a child is their first or their sixth, a personalized baby gift is always a treasure.
Every baby deserves something that is specially and uniquely theirs to honor their arrival. Whether it is a stunning personalised blessing or photo frame or an adorable romper or bib, it is sure to be cherished and appreciated. Nothing says ‘welcome to the world’ as clearly as a personalised Irish gifts for babies!