A pretty Celtic name or Irish name is one of the most enduring Irish gifts you can give your daughter. She’ll carry it for life, and the people who know her best will always associate that name with her qualities, strengths and personality, and of course the Emerald Isle.
Baby Irish name lists are fascinating, whether or not you are trying to name a child. If you’re looking for some insight or inspiration, here are some of the most popular Irish names in Ireland. Just as people in the USA, Canada, Australia, and other places look to Ireland for interesting, meaningful, and beautiful new names, the Irish look outward to other countries and cultures. The most popular name for baby girls born in 2019 was Emily. Grace was second. The first Irish name to appear on the list, Fiadh, was in third place.
Top Ten Irish Names – Girls
These are the top ten Irish girls’ names chosen for babies born in Ireland in 2019. Some of the pronunciations can be tricky for those who aren’t used to them, so we’ve included a guide to how to say them as well as their meaning.
Be warned, Irish names have many silent letters, particularly on the ends of words. The letter H changes the sound of the letter ahead of it. For example, ‘bh’ makes the same sound the letter V does.
- Fiadh comes from the Irish word for deer and means wild, untamed, natural, and respect. (Fee-ah)
- Aoife was the daughter of a king of Leinster and the wife of Ireland’s greatest warrior Cuchulainn. The name means joyful, radiant, and beautiful. (Ee-fah)
- Caoimhe is the feminine version of Kevin, and it means gentle and precious. (Kwee-vah)
- Molly owes a great deal of fame to the song Molly Malone. It’s a diminutive of Mary or Maureen that’s become a name in its own right. (Mawl-ee)
- Saoirse became popular after Ireland gained independence. It is the Irish word for freedom. (Sear-shaw)
- Éabha is the Irish version of Eve, and it is pronounced like Ava. It means life, source of life and is the form of Eve used in Irish language Bibles. (Ay-vah)
- Cara comes from the Irish word for friend and that is just what it means. (Car-ah, not care-ah)
- Sadhbh means sweet, lovely, and wise. Outside of Ireland, your daughter would need all of those qualities plus endless patience to deal with people’s bafflement at seeing her name in writing. You could spell it Sive to avoid that. (sie-v, rhymes with hive and five)
- Erin is of course Irish for Ireland, and yes, it is a name you’d hear in the emerald isle. (air-in)
- Róisín is one Irish variation of Rose or Rosa meaning little rose. Rosaleen is another popular version here. (row-sheen)
If you’re looking for personalized Irish gifts, it wouldn’t be hard to find these names at an Irish retailer. And except for Molly, Cara, and Erin, these beautiful Irish girls’ names would be fairly unusual outside of Ireland. They are lovely options for a distinctive name that’s also traditional.