Gender Masculine

Meaning & History

Irish name of uncertain meaning, possibly from a Celtic root meaning "damp" (cognate with Neptune). In Irish mythology Nechtan was the husband of Boann, the goddess of the River Boyne. He is sometimes identified with Nuada. This name was borne by the 5th-century Saint Nectan of Hartland in Devon, who was supposedly born in Ireland. It was also the name of several kings of the Picts (described mostly from Gaelic sources, this may represent a Pictish cognate).


Sources & References

  1. O'Brien, Kathleen M. Index of Names in Irish Annals, available from
Entry updated January 21, 2022