This page is crammed with information about the Celtic genre, the origins of Celtic baby names, first name and surnames.
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We have provided a selection of over 1,000 Celtic Baby name's to choose from! Still unsure? Then check out over 50,000 others available via the Index. Click the following links to access:
Celtic Baby Boy Names
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Celtic Baby Names - Info requested by our visitors
In their search for this particular Celtic category people become interested in researching their own surname or family and First Name. We have therefore included this information to meet the requests of our visitors.
Celtic is the language of the Celts. The remains of the old Celtic language are found in the Scottish (also referred to as Gaelic), Irish (also known a the Erse), the Manx, Cornish and the Welsh dialects. A name sometimes given to that dialect of the Celtic which is spoken in the Highlands of Scotland is called, by the Highlanders, Gaelic. Celtic surnames and their derivatives are detailed under the following sections about Scottish surnames, Welsh surnames and Irish surnames.
Celtic Surnames - Scottish
Scottish surnames divide into two categories. Scottish surnames from the highlands and Scottish surnames from the lowlands of Scotland. The Scottish Gaelic surnames from the highlands were heavily influenced by the Clans. Highlanders gave their allegiance to Clans and adopted the surname used by that clan. These surnames included names like Mackintosh, Macgregor, Maclachlan, Macdonnell, Macdonald, Macduff, Buchanan, Drummond, Munro, Campbell, Stewart, Cameron and Ross. Scottish surnames from the lowlands of Scotland tended to be influenced by English surnames. Many Scottish surnames such as Stewart, Cameron and Ross are now commonly used as a First or middle name.
Celtic Surnames - Welsh
Welsh Surnames -It has been estimated that about nine-tenths of the Welsh population answer to a total of just one hundred surnames. Examples of Welsh surnames are Bennett, Beynon, Davis, Ellis, Evans, Griffiths, Jones, Lewis, Llewelyn, Lloyd, Owen, Pritchard, Pugh, Powell, Price, Meredith, Thomas, Trewent, Yorath and Williams. Welsh surnames make use of patronymics as opposed to fixed surnames. Patronymics are of , relating to, or derived from the name of one's father or a paternal ancestor. The Welsh patronymics surnames system used the prefixes ab or ap (meaning son of) such as ap Rhys (for son of Rhys) or ab Owen (for son of Owen). This lead to many Welsh surnames beginning with the letters B and P. The letter A was dropped from ap and ab. The name ap Howell was thus shortened to Phowell and gradually this then lead to the surname Powell.
- Bowen from 'ab Owen' son of Owen
- Price from 'ap Rhys' for son of Rhys
- Pritchard from 'ap Richard' son of Richard
- Celtic Surnames - Irish Surnames
The oldest surname recorded anywhere in Europe can be found in Irish historical records dating back to the year 916. According to Friar Woulfe, an authority on Irish surnames, the first recorded fixed surname is O'Clery (Ó Cleirigh) detailing the death of Tigherneach Ua Cleirigh, lord of Aidhne in County Galway. Patronymics are of , relating to, or derived from the name of one's father or a paternal ancestor and this system of naming people played a part in the meanings and origins of Irish surnames. The term 'Ua', as in the above Irish surname Tigherneach Ua Cleirigh, was an early form of "O" meaning grandson (Tigherneach was therefore the grandson of Cleirigh). The prefix "Mac", meaning son of, was also used in Irish surnames, although this name was not always hereditary and could change according to a given name. Fitz was also a similar prefix used (also meaning son of).
Ancient Irish Celtic Surnames
The oldest Irish surnames were taken from occupations, tribal customs and traditions and from pre-Christian Gods. Unlike English surnames, very few Irish surnames were derived from locations. Irish surnames tended to reflect ancestors or important historical figures.
The Church & Irish Celtic Surnames
The influence of the Christian church from the 10th century then played a role in the origins and meanings of Irish surnames and these have survived the test of time. Irish surnames beginning with 'Kil' or 'Gil' derive from the Irish word 'Giolla', meaning follower or devotee. Irish surnames beginning with 'Mul' derive from the Irish word Maol meaning bald (this referred to the tonsure of monks)
Celtic First Names
The Importance of a Celtic First Name!
We respond to our names throughout our lives. People associate us with our first name, it forms part of our identity. They help to distinguish us from one to another. Other people gain immediate and sometimes totally subconscious views of people, just from hearing a name they can therefore give us a distinct advantage in life, or conversely, a disadvantage! The choice of an Celtic Baby name is, therefore, incredibly important. And those of us who choose a baby's name are taking on a responsible task!
The Origins of Celtic baby names
The origins of Celtic baby names include those related to places, mythology and history, origins are sometimes derived from colours, plants and other types of nature, fictional origins, historical origins, characteristic and religious origins. We then move on to the specific Celtic category which can be classed as Clan names, Descriptive, Place, Speciality and finally unique (or created names).
Questions about Celtic baby names!
At one time or another most of us have posed some the following questions about our own names...
- What does my name mean?
- Why did my parents choose the name?
- Are there any strong family connections to my name?
- Where did my name originate?
- Why was I given such a popular name?
- Why was I given such an unusual name?
What Celtic baby name shall I give to my baby?
Will the traditional Celtic baby name suit my baby? Will it be appropriate throughout a full life cycle starting with baby - toddler - school child - teenager - young adults - parents - middle age - retirement and ending with old age. Will it suit a pensioner as well as a baby? Will the schoolchild be teased mercilessly about a name? What will your baby think of your choice?
Help is at hand when making a choice from Celtic baby names!
The various sections included in www. babynames. org. uk accessed via the Site Map will provide answers to all of your questions regarding the choice of a first name. And our exclusive Name Evaluator will help you avoid any of the many pitfalls!
Want to know more?
Further information about surnames and Genealogy can be found by clicking the following links:
World of Baby Names