Ancient Celtic Names

These names were used by the Celtic peoples who occupied Europe and the British Isles. See also about Ancient Celtic names.
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ÁEDÁNmAncient Irish, Irish Mythology
Older form of AODHÁN. This was the name of a 6th-century king of the Scots.
BOADICEAfAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Medieval variant of BOUDICCA, possibly arising from a scribal error.
BOUDICCAfAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Derived from Brythonic boud meaning "victory". This was the name of a 1st-century queen of the Iceni who led the Britons in revolt against the Romans. Eventually her forces were defeated and she committed suicide. Her name is first recorded in Roman histories, as Boudicca by Tacitus and Βουδουικα (Boudouika) by Cassius Dio.
BRADÁNmAncient Irish
Derived from Irish Gaelic meaning "salmon".
BRÉANAINNmAncient Irish
Old Irish form of BRENDAN.
BRENNUSmAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Latinized form of a Celtic name (or title) that possibly meant either "king, prince" or "raven". Brennus was a Gallic leader of the 4th century BC who attacked and sacked Rome.
BRIANmEnglish, 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.
BRICIUSmAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Latin form of BRICE, probably ultimately of Gaulish origin.
CADEYRNmAncient 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.
CAISIDEmAncient Irish
Old Irish byname meaning "curly haired", from Irish Gaelic cas.
CAOMHmAncient Irish
Masculine form of CAOIMHE.
CAOMHÁNmAncient Irish
Diminutive of CAOMH. This was the name of a 6th-century Irish saint.
CARATACOSmAncient Celtic
Derived from the Celtic element car meaning "love". This was the name of a 1st-century British chieftain who rebelled against Roman rule.
CATHASACHmAncient Irish
Means "vigilant" in Irish.
CORRAIDHÍNmAncient Irish
Means "little spear", derived from Irish corradh "spear" and a diminutive suffix.
CUIDIGHTHEACHmAncient Irish
Old Irish byname meaning "helpful".
CUNOBELINUSmAncient Celtic
Possibly means "hound of Belenus" from the old Celtic element koun "hound" combined with the name of the god BELENUS. This was the name of a 1st-century king of southeast Britain.
CYNBELmAncient Celtic
Derived from Welsh cyn "chief" and bel "war".
CYNWRIGmAncient Celtic
Derived from Welsh cyn meaning "chief" and gwr meaning "hero, man", plus the suffix ig indicating "has the quality of".
DONNCHADmAncient Irish
Older Gaelic form of DUNCAN.
DONNDUBHÁNmAncient Irish
Composed of the Gaelic element donn "brown" combined with dubh "dark" and a diminutive suffix.
DRUSTmAncient Celtic
Pictish name probably derived from Celtic drest meaning "riot" or "tumult". This name was borne by several kings of the Picts, including their last king Drust X, who ruled in the 9th century.
DRUSTANmAncient Celtic
Older form of TRISTAN. This name was borne by a 7th-century Scottish saint.
DUBHSHLÁINEmAncient Irish
Old Irish name derived from dubh "dark, black" and either slán "defiance" or Sláine, the Gaelic name of the River Slaney.
DUBHTHACHmAncient Irish
Old Irish name derived from dubh "dark, black" in combination with a second element of unknown meaning.
ELISEDDmAncient Celtic
Derived from Welsh elus meaning "kind". This was the name of two kings of Powys in Wales.
FEIDLIMIDm & fAncient Irish, Irish Mythology
Possibly means "beauty" or "ever good" in Irish Gaelic. This was the name of three early kings of Munster.
GALCHOBHARmAncient Irish
Means "foreign help" in Irish.
GWRTHEYRNmAncient Celtic
Means "supreme king" from Welsh gor meaning "over" and teyrn meaning "king, monarch". It is possible that this is not a name, but a title. Gwrtheyrn (also known as Vortigern) was a 5th-century king of the Britons. It was he who invited Horsa and Hengist to Britain, which eventually led to the Anglo-Saxon conquest of England.
IODOCUSmAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Latinized form of Judoc (see JOYCE).
IUDICAELmAncient Celtic
Old Breton form of JUDICAËL.
IUDOCUSmAncient Celtic (Latinized)
Latinized form of Judoc (see JOYCE).
LÓEGAIREmIrish Mythology, Ancient Irish
Means "calf herder", derived from Irish loagh "calf". In Irish mythology Lóegaire Búadach was an Ulster warrior. He saved the life of the poet Áed, but died in the process. This was also the name of several Irish high kings.
LUGUBELENUSmAncient Celtic
Older form (possibly) of LLYWELYN.
LUIGSECHfAncient Irish
Derived from the name of the Irish god LUGH.
MÁEDÓCmAncient Irish
Meaning unknown. Saint Máedóc (also known as Áedán) of Ferns was a 7th-century Irish bishop.
MÁEL MÁEDÓCmAncient Irish
Means "disciple of Saint MÁEDÓC" in Irish. Saint Máel Máedóc (also known as Malachy) was a 12th-century archbishop of Armagh.
MÁEL SECHNAILLmAncient Irish
Means "disciple of Saint SEACHNALL" in Irish. This was the name of two Irish high kings: Máel Sechnaill mac Máele Ruanaid who ruled all of Ireland in the 9th century; and Máel Sechnaill mac Domnaill (called Malachy) who defeated the Norse of Dublin in the 10th century.
MATHGHAMHAINmAncient Irish
Means "bear" in Irish Gaelic. This was the name of a brother of the Irish king Brian Boru.
MOCHÁNmAncient Irish
Derived from Irish moch "early" combined with a diminutive suffix.
NECHTANmIrish Mythology, Ancient Celtic
Celtic name of uncertain meaning, possibly meaning "damp" (cognate with NEPTUNE). In Irish mythology Nechtan was the husband of Boand, the goddess of the River Boyne. This name was also 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.
NINIANmScottish, Irish, Ancient Celtic
Meaning unknown. It appears in a Latinized form Niniavus, which could be from the Welsh name NYNNIAW. This was the name of a 5th-century British saint who was apparently responsible for many miracles and cures. He is known as the Apostle to the Picts.
NUALLÁNmAncient Irish
Derived from Irish nuall "noble, famous" combined with a diminutive suffix.
NYNNIAWmAncient Celtic
Meaning unknown, presumably of Welsh origin. According to the 12th-century chronicler Geoffrey of Monmouth, this was the name of a Welsh prince who fought against the invading forces of Julius Caesar. It was also borne by an 8th-century Welsh historian, usually known by the Latinized form Nennius.
SEISYLLmAncient Celtic
Old Welsh form of SEXTILIUS.
SLUAGHADHÁNmAncient Irish
Derived from Irish sluaghadh "raid" and a diminutive suffix.
SUIBHNEmIrish, Scottish, Ancient Irish
Means "well-going" in Gaelic. This was the name of a 7th-century high king of Ireland.
VERCINGETORIXmAncient Celtic
Means "king over warriors" from Gaulish ver "on, over" combined with cingeto "marching men, warriors" and rix "king". This name was borne by a chieftain of the Gaulish tribe the Arverni. He led the resistance against Julius Caesar's attempts to conquer Gaul, but he was eventually defeated, brought to Rome, and executed.