BRETT m & f English
From a Middle English surname meaning "a Breton", referring to an inhabitant of Brittany. A famous bearer is the American football quarterback Brett Favre (1969-).
BRIAN m English, Irish, Ancient Irish
The meaning of this name is not known for certain but it is possibly related to the old Celtic element bre
meaning "hill", or by extension "high, noble". It was borne by the semi-legendary Irish king Brian Boru, who thwarted Viking attempts to conquer Ireland in the 11th century. He was slain in the Battle of Clontarf, though his forces were decisively victorious. The name was common in Ireland before his time, and even more so afterwards. It came into use in England in the Middle Ages, introduced by Breton settlers. It subsequently became rare, but was revived in the 20th century.
BRICE m French, English
From the name Bricius
, which was probably a Latinized form of a Gaulish name meaning "speckled". This was the name of a 5th-century saint, a disciple of Saint Martin of Tours.
BRIDGER m English (Modern)
From an English surname which originally indicated a person who lived near or worked on a bridge.
BRIGHAM m English (Rare)
From a surname which was originally derived from place names meaning "bridge settlement" in Old English.
BRIJESHA m Hinduism
Means "ruler of Brij" in Sanskrit. This is another name of the Hindu god Krishna
, Brij being a region associated with him.
BRISCOE m English (Rare)
From a surname which was derived from a place name meaning "birch wood" in Old Norse.
BRISTOL m English (Rare)
From the name of the city in southwest England which means "the site of the bridge".
BRITTON m English
Derived from a Middle English surname meaning "a Briton" (a Celt of England) or "a Breton" (an inhabitant of Brittany).
BROCK m English
From a surname which was derived from Old English brocc
BRODY m English
From a surname which was originally derived from a place in Moray, Scotland. It probably means "ditch, mire" in Gaelic.
BROGAN m & f Irish
Derived from Gaelic bróg
"shoe" combined with a diminutive suffix. This was the name of several Irish saints, including Saint Patrick
BRONISŁAW m Polish
Derived from the Slavic elements borna
"protection" and slava
"glory". A famous Polish anthropologist, Bronisław Malinowski (1884-1942), has borne this name.
BRONTE m & f English (Rare)
From a surname, an Anglicized form of Irish Ó Proinntigh
meaning "descendant of Proinnteach". The given name Proinnteach
meant "bestower" in Gaelic. The Brontë sisters - Charlotte, Emily, and Anne - were 19th-century English novelists. Their father changed the spelling of the family surname from Brunty
, possibly to make it coincide with Greek βροντη
BRONTES m Greek Mythology
Means "thunderer" in Greek. In Greek mythology (according to Hesiod), this was the name of one of the three Cyclopes, who were the sons of Uranus
BROOK m & f English
From an English surname which denoted one who lived near a brook.
BRUCE m Scottish, English
From a Scottish surname, of Norman origin, which probably originally referred to the town of Brix in France. The surname was borne by Robert the Bruce, a Scottish hero of the 14th century who achieved independence from England and became the king of Scotland. It has been in use as a given name in the English-speaking world since the 19th century. A notable bearer is the American musician Bruce Springsteen (1949-).
BRUTUS m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen meaning "heavy" in Latin. Famous bearers include Lucius Junius Brutus, the traditional founder of the Roman Republic, and Marcus Junius Brutus, the statesman who conspired to assassinated Julius Caesar.
BRYN m & f Welsh, English
Means "hill, mound" in Welsh. It is now used as a feminine name as well.
BRYNMOR m Welsh
From a Welsh place name meaning "great hill".
BUCK m English
From an English nickname meaning simply "buck, male deer", ultimately from Old English bucc
BUDDHA m History
Means "enlightened" in Sanskrit. This is a title applied to Siddhartha Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, as well as to a handful of other enlightened individuals.
BUDDY m English
From the English word meaning "friend". It probably originated as a nursery form of the word brother
BURAK m Turkish
From Arabic براق (Buraq)
, the name of the legendary creature that, according to Islamic tradition, transported the Prophet Muhammad
. Its name is derived from Arabic برق (barq)
BURKE m English
From an English surname which was derived from Old English burg
BURKHARD m German, Ancient Germanic
Derived from the Germanic elements burg
meaning "protection" and hard
"brave, hardy". Saint Burkhard was a bishop who founded several monasteries in Germany in the 8th century.
BURTON m English
From a surname which was originally taken from an Old English place name meaning "fortified town". A famous bearer of the surname was Sir Richard Burton (1821-1890), an explorer of Africa and Asia.
BUSTER m English
Originally a nickname denoting a person who broke things, from the word bust
. A famous bearer was the silent movie star Buster Keaton (1895-1966).
BUZ m Biblical
Means "contempt" in Hebrew. This is the name of a son of ABRAHAM
's brother Nahor
in the Old Testament.
BYELOBOG m Slavic Mythology
Means "the white god" from Slavic byelo
"white" and bogu
"god". This was the name of the Slavic god of the sun, happiness and fortune.
BYEONG-HO m Korean
From Sino-Korean 炳 (byeong)
meaning "bright, luminous, glorious" combined with 浩 (ho)
meaning "great, numerous, vast" or 昊 (ho)
meaning "summer, sky, heaven". Other hanja character combinations are possible.
BYRON m English
From a surname which was originally from a place name meaning "place of the cow sheds" in Old English. This was the surname of the romantic poet Lord Byron (1788-1824), the writer of 'Don Juan' and many other works.
BYSSHE m English (Rare)
From an English surname, a variant of the surname Bush
, which originally indicated a person who lived near a bush. This was the middle name of the romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822).
CADE m English
From a surname which was originally derived from a nickname meaning "round" in Old English.
CADELL m Welsh
From Welsh cad
"battle" and a diminutive suffix.
CADEN m English (Modern)
Sometimes explained as a derivative of the Irish surname Caden
, which is a reduced form of the Gaelic surname Mac Cadáin
meaning "son of Cadán". In actuality, its popularity in America beginning in the 1990s is due to its sound - it shares its fashionable aden
suffix sound with other popular names like Hayden
CADEYRN m Ancient Celtic
Means "battle king" from Welsh cad
"battle" and teyrn
"king, monarch". Cadeyrn (also known as Catigern) was a 5th-century king of Powys in Wales, the son of Vortigern.
CADFAEL m Welsh
Means "battle prince" from Welsh cad
"battle" and mael
CADFAN m Welsh
Means "battle peak" from Welsh cad
"battle" and ban
"peak". Saint Cadfan, from Brittany, was a 6th-century missionary to Wales.
CADMUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of Greek Καδμος (Kadmos)
, of uncertain meaning. In Greek mythology Cadmus was the son of the Phoenician king Agenor. He was sent by his father to rescue his sister Europa
, who had been abducted by Zeus
, although he did not succeed in retrieving her. According to legend, Cadmus founded the city of Thebes and introduced the alphabet to Greece.
CADOC m Welsh
Derived from Welsh cad
"battle". This was the name of a 6th-century Welsh saint who was martyred by the Saxons.
CADWALADER m Welsh
Means "leader of the battle" from Welsh cad
"battle" and gwaladr
"leader". This was the name of a Welsh saint of the 7th century.
CADWGAN m Welsh
Means "glory in battle" from Welsh cad
"battle" and gwogawn
"glory, honour". In the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth, this name is briefly mentioned as the son of Iddon.
CAEDMON m History
Meaning unknown, though the first element is likely connected to Brythonic caed
meaning "battle". Saint Caedmon was a 7th-century Anglo-Saxon poet who supposedly received his poetic inspiration from a dream. Our only knowledge of him is through the historian Bede.
CÁEL m Irish Mythology
From Gaelic caol
"slender". In Irish legend Cáel was a warrior of the Fianna and the lover of Créd.
CAERWYN m Welsh
Derived from the Welsh elements caer
"fortress" and gwyn
CAESAR m Ancient Roman
From a Roman cognomen which possibly meant "hairy", from Latin caesaries
"hair". Julius Caesar and his adopted son Julius Caesar Octavianus (commonly known as Augustus) were both rulers of the Roman Empire in the 1st century BC. Caesar
was used as a title by the emperors that came after them.
ÇAĞATAY m Turkish
From the Mongolian name Tsagadai
(of unknown meaning), which was borne by the second son of Genghis
Khan, known as Chagatai
CAIAPHAS m Biblical
Meaning unknown, probably of Aramaic origin. In the New Testament this is the name of the Jewish high priest who condemns Jesus
CAIN m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means "acquired" in Hebrew. In Genesis in the Old Testament Cain is the first son of Adam
. He killed his brother Abel
after God accepted Abel's offering of meat instead of his offering of plant-based foods. After this Cain was banished to be a wanderer.
CALEB m English, Biblical
Most likely related to Hebrew כֶּלֶב (kelev)
meaning "dog". An alternate theory connects it to Hebrew כָּל (kal)
"whole, all of" and לֵב (lev)
"heart". In the Old Testament this is the name of one of the twelve spies sent by Moses
into Canaan. Of the Israelites who left Egypt with Moses, Caleb and Joshua
were the only ones who lived to see the Promised Land.... [more]
CALIGULA m History
Means "little boot" in Latin. This was a nickname for the Roman emperor Gaius Caesar Germanicus given to him in his youth by his father's soldiers.
CALIXTUS m Late Roman
Variant of CALLISTUS
, the spelling perhaps influenced by Latin calix
"wine cup". This was the name of three popes (also known as Callistus).
CALLISTUS m Late Roman
Late Latin name which was derived from the Greek name Καλλιστος (Kallistos)
"most beautiful". This was the name of three popes (also known as Callixtus), including the 3rd-century Callistus I who is regarded as a saint.
CALLIXTUS m Late Roman
Variant of CALLISTUS
, the spelling perhaps influenced by Latin calix
"wine cup". This was the name of three popes (also known as Callistus).
CALOGERO m Italian
From the Late Latin name Calogerus
which meant "beautiful elder" from Greek καλος (kalos)
"beautiful" and γερων (geron)
"old man, elder". This was the name of a 5th-century saint, a hermit of Sicily.
CALVIN m English
Derived from the French surname Cauvin
, which was derived from chauve
"bald". The surname was borne by Jean Cauvin (1509-1564), a theologian from France who was one of the leaders of the Protestant Reformation. His surname was Latinized as Calvinus
(based on Latin calvus
"bald") and he is known as John Calvin in English. It has been used as a given name in his honour since the 19th century.
CAMBYSES m History
From Καμβυσης (Kambyses)
, the Greek form of the Old Persian name Kambujiya
, which is of unknown meaning. Two Persian kings bore this name, including Cambyses II who conquered Egypt.
CAMDEN m English (Modern)
From a surname which was from a place name perhaps meaning "enclosed valley" in Old English. A famous bearer of the surname was the English historian William Camden (1551-1623).
CAMERON m & f English
From a Scottish surname meaning "crooked nose" from Gaelic cam
"crooked" and sròn
CAMILLE f & m French, English
French feminine and masculine form of CAMILLA
. It is also used in the English-speaking world, where it is generally only feminine.
CAMILLUS m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen, which is probably of Etruscan origin and unknown meaning. It is probably not related to Latin camillus
"a youth employed in religious services". This name was borne by the 16th-century Italian monk Saint Camillus de Lellis.
CAMPBELL m English
From a Scottish surname meaning "crooked mouth" from Gaelic cam
"crooked" and béul
CANAAN m Biblical
Meaning unknown. In the Old Testament this is the name of a son of Ham
. He is said to be the ancestor of the Canaanite people.
CAOLÁN m Irish
From Gaelic caol
"slender" combined with the diminutive suffix án
CARADOG m Welsh
Welsh form of CARATACOS
. This is the name of several figures in Welsh history and legend, including a 6th-century king of Gwent and a Knight of the Round Table in Arthurian romance.
CARATACOS m Ancient Celtic
Derived from the Celtic element car
meaning "love". This was the name of a 1st-century British chieftain who rebelled against Roman rule.
CARL m German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, English
German form of CHARLES
. Two noteworthy bearers of the name were the German mathematician Carl Gauss (1777-1855), who made contributions to number theory and algebra as well as physics and astronomy, and the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung (1875-1961), who founded analytical psychology. It was imported to America in the 19th century by German immigrants.
CARLISLE m English
From a surname which was derived from the name of a city in northern England. The city was originally called by the Romans Luguvalium
meaning "stronghold of LUGUS
". Later the Brythonic element ker
"fort" was appended to the name of the city.
CARMI m Biblical
Means "vine" in Hebrew. This was the name of a son of Reuben in the Old Testament.
CAROL (1) f & m English
Short form of CAROLINE
. It was formerly a masculine name, derived from CAROLUS
. The name can also be given in reference to the English vocabulary word, which means "song" or "hymn".
CARON f & m Welsh
Derived from Welsh caru
meaning "to love".
CARPUS m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Latin form of the Greek name Καρπος (Karpos)
, which meant "fruit, profits". The name is mentioned briefly in the New Testament in the second epistle of Timothy.
CARROLL m Irish
Anglicized form of CEARBHALL
. A famous bearer of the surname was Lewis Carroll (1832-1898), whose real name was Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, the author of 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland'.
CARSON m & f Scottish, English
From a Scottish surname of uncertain meaning. A famous bearer of the surname was the American scout Kit Carson (1809-1868).
CARTER m English
From an English surname which meant "one who uses a cart".
CÁRTHACH m Irish
Means "loving" in Irish. This was the name of a 6th-century Irish saint.
CARWYN m Welsh
Means "blessed love" from Welsh caru
"love" and gwyn
"white, fair, blessed".
CASEY m & f English, Irish
From an Irish surname, an Anglicized form of Ó Cathasaigh
meaning "descendant of CATHASACH
". This name can be given in honour of Casey Jones (1863-1900), a train engineer who sacrificed his life to save his passengers. In his case, Casey
was a nickname acquired because he was raised in the town of Cayce, Kentucky.
CASH m English
From an English occupational surname for a box maker, derived from Norman French casse
meaning "case". A famous bearer of the surname was American musician Johnny Cash (1932-2003).
CASIMIR m English, French
English form of the Polish name Kazimierz
, derived from the Slavic element kaziti
"to destroy" combined with miru
"peace, world". Four kings of Poland have borne this name, including Casimir III the Great, who greatly strengthened the Polish state in the 14th century. It was also borne Saint Casimir, a 15th-century Polish prince and a patron saint of Poland and Lithuania. The name was imported into Western Europe via Germany, where it was borne by some royalty.
CASPIAN m Literature
Used by author C. S. Lewis for a character in his 'Chronicles of Narnia' series, first appearing in 1950. Prince Caspian first appears in the fourth book, where he is the rightful king of Narnia driven into exile by his evil uncle Miraz. Lewis probably based the name on the Caspian Sea, which was named for the city of Qazvin, which was itself named for the ancient Cas tribe.
CASSIAN m Ancient Roman (Anglicized)
From the Roman family name Cassianus
, which was derived from CASSIUS
. This was the name of several saints, including a 3rd-century martyr from Tangier who is the patron saint of stenographers and a 5th-century mystic who founded a monastery in Marseille.
CASSIUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name which was possibly derived from Latin cassus
"empty, vain". This name was borne by several early saints. In modern times, it was the original first name of boxer Muhammad Ali (1942-2016), who was named after his father Cassius Clay, who was himself named after the American abolitionist Cassius Clay (1810-1903).
CAT f & m English
Diminutive of CATHERINE
. It can also be a nickname from the English word for the animal.
CATHAIR m Irish
Means "battle man" from Gaelic cath
"battle" and vir
CATHAL m Irish
Derived from the Gaelic elements cath
"battle" and val
"rule". This was the name of a 7th-century Irish saint. It has sometimes been Anglicized as Charles
CATHÁN m Irish
Derived from Gaelic cath
"battle" combined with a diminutive suffix.
CATO (1) m Ancient Roman
Roman cognomen meaning "wise" in Latin. This name was bestowed upon Cato the Elder (Marcus Porcius Cato), a 2nd-century BC Roman statesman, author and censor, and was subsequently inherited by his descendants, including his great-grandson Cato the Younger (Marcus Porcius Cato Uticencis), a politician and philosopher who opposed Julius Caesar.
CAVAN m English
Either from the name of the Irish county, which is derived from Irish cabhán
"hollow", or else from the Irish surname CAVAN
CEALLACH m Irish
Irish name of uncertain origin, traditionally said to mean "bright-headed". Alternatively it could be derived from Old Irish ceallach
"war, strife" or ceall
CECIL m English
From the Roman name Caecilius
). This was the name of a 3rd-century saint, a companion of Saint Cyprian. Though it was in use during the Middle Ages in England, it did not become common until the 19th century when it was given in honour of the noble Cecil family, who had been prominent since the 16th century. Their surname was derived from the Welsh given name Seisyll
, which was derived from the Roman name Sextilius
, a derivative of SEXTUS
CEDAR f & m English (Rare)
From the English word for the coniferous tree, derived (via Old French and Latin) from Greek κεδρος (kedros)
CEDRIC m English
Invented by Sir Walter Scott for a character in his novel 'Ivanhoe' (1819). Apparently he based it on the actual name Cerdic
, the name of the semi-legendary founder of the kingdom of Wessex in the 6th century. The meaning of Cerdic
is uncertain, but it does not appear to be Old English in origin. It could be connected to the Brythonic name CARATACOS
. The name was also used by Frances Hodgson Burnett for the main character in her novel 'Little Lord Fauntleroy' (1886).
CELESTINE f & m English
English form of CAELESTINUS
. It is more commonly used as a feminine name, from the French feminine form Célestine
CELSUS m Ancient Roman
Roman family name which meant "tall" in Latin. This was the name of a 2nd-century philosopher who wrote against Christianity. It was also borne by an early saint martyred with Nazarius in Milan.
CENK m Turkish
Means "battle, war" in Turkish, ultimately from Persian.
CENNÉTIG m Irish
Old Irish byname meaning "armoured head" or "misshapen head". This was the name of an Irish king, the father of Brian
CEPHALUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek Κεφαλος (Kephalos)
, which was derived from κεφαλη (kephale)
meaning "head". In Greek legend he remained faithful to his wife Procris even though he was pursued by the goddess Eos.
CEPHAS m Biblical, Biblical Latin
Means "rock" in Aramaic. The apostle Simon
was called Cephas by Jesus
because he was to be the rock upon which the Christian church was to be built. In most versions of the New Testament Cephas
is translated into Greek Πετρος (Petros)
(in English Peter
CEPHEUS m Greek Mythology (Latinized)
Latinized form of the Greek Κηφευς (Kepheus)
, which is of unknown meaning. In Greek legend he was a king of Ethiopia, the husband of Cassiopeia. After he died he was made into a constellation and placed in the sky.
CERI (1) m Welsh
Possibly derived from Welsh caru
meaning "to love".
CERNUNNOS m Celtic Mythology (Latinized)
Means "horned" in Celtic. This was the name of the Celtic god fertility, animals, wealth, and the underworld. He was usually depicted having antlers, and was identified with the Roman god Mercury
CHAD m English
From the Old English name Ceadda
which is of unknown meaning, possibly based on Welsh cad
"battle". This was the name of a 7th-century English saint. Borne primarily by Catholics, it was a rare name until the 1960s when it started to become more common amongst the general population. This is also the name of a country in Africa, though it originates from a different source.
CHADWICK m English
From a surname which was derived from the name of towns in England, meaning "settlement belonging to CHAD
" in Old English.