So, you’re pregnant and looking for the perfect name for your little one? Well, I may be just a tiny bit biased but I don’t think you can do much better than to pick a Welsh name for your baby. Welsh names are beautiful, unique and should definitely be added to any shortlist. Here you’ll find a selection of some of my favourite Welsh baby names including their meanings and origins.
Welsh Names for the Boys (Enwau Cymraeg i’r Bechgyn)
Aled is the name of a river in Denbighshire. Aled means offspring in English.
Bleddyn comes from the word “Blaidd” or Wolf in English along with the diminutive suffix, -yn. Bleddyn was the name of an 11th Century Welsh King – Bleddyn ap Cynfyn was according to the Chronicles of the Princes all a king should be, kind generous and just.
Carwyn comes from the words “car” or to love in English and “Gwyn” meaning white, fair or blessed in English.
Cellan is a village in Cardiganshire, found on the banks of the River Teifi.
Dafydd is Welsh for David. Sounds better too. Famous Dafydd’s include Dafydd ap Gruffudd, Prince of Wales (brother of Llywelyn ein Llyw Olaf) and Dafydd ap Gwilym a 14th Century Poet.
Deiniol is Welsh for Daniel. There was a St. Deiniol who died in 584, he was founder of the city of Bangor, Wales and the First Bishop of Gwynedd.
Dewi is another Welsh name for David. The most famous Dewi is undoubtedly Dewi Sant (or St. David) patron saint of Wales.
Dylan is made up of two elements, dy meaning great, and llanw meaning tide. It is a name used in one of the oldest Welsh (recorded) stories the Mabinogi. Famous Dylan’s include the poet Dylan Thomas and Bob Dylan.
Eifion is an old Welsh name which has a connection to Eifionydd which was named for the son or grandson of King Cunedda, Eifion.
Emyr is Welsh for Emperor, King or Lord. It was also the name of a 6th Century Saint.
Gareth has an uncertain meaning but is first found as a Knight of the Round Table in the 15th Century Le Morte d’Arthur, Thomas Malory’s collection of the Legends of Arthur.
Geraint possibly comes from the old British name Gerontios, and could come from the Greek for Old Man. Geraint was another Knight of the Round Table.
Glyn is Welsh for valley.
Guto is a shortened version of Gruffudd
Gruffudd evolved from from Gripuid or Grippiud and was a popular name among Welsh royalty. Gruffudd ap Cynan, King of Gwynedd, who came to be known as the King of all Wales is one of these.
Hywel is a Welsh name which means visible, prominent, eminent. The Welsh king Hywel Dda “King of the Britons” was the first to codify traditional Welsh laws.
Ieuan is one of the many Welsh forms of John. Others include: Ifan, Iwan, Ioan and Siôn.
Idris (the Welsh forms of the word, there is also an Arabic form) means Ardent Lord in Welsh udd means lord or prince, while ris means ardent, enthusiastic or impulsive. There is a mountain Cadair Idris (the Chair of Idris) in North Wales, this was the seat of Idris Gawr (Idris the Giant).
Llion (can be spelt as Lleon) as a name, apparently comes from the Welsh giant and king Caerleon. Caerleon is also a town in South Wales meaning Fort of the Legionaries.
Llywelyn is an ancient name coming from the old Celtic Lugobelinos. On the other hand, it could be associated with llyw the word for leader in Welsh. Some variation in the spelling starts with llew or lion. There are several Welsh princes with the name Llywelyn – the most famous being Llywelyn Fawr (the Great) and Llywelyn ein Llyw Olaf (our last leader)
Llŷr in Celtic mythology is a God of the sea.
Osian is the Welsh form of the Irish name Oisin.
Owain is an ancient name. Found in the Mabinogi where Owain is a knight rescued by the Lady of the Fountain. Owain is also the name of Owain Glyndŵr 14th Century Welsh hero.
An old Welsh name made up of the elements rhod, or wheel in English and rhi, ruler in English. Rhodri Fawr was a King of Gwynedd during the 9th Century.
Rhys is a Welsh name that has been used for centuries and is always popular. Meaning enthusiasm in English it is also a name that was regularly used by the rulers of Deheubarth in South West Wales.
Steffan is the Welsh form of Stephen.
Tecwyn comes from the Welsh words teg, or fair in English and gwyn, white or fair in English.
Wyn is a short form of Gwyn meaning white in English.
Welsh Names for the Girls (Enwau Cymraeg i’r Merched)
Alaw is Welsh for melody or tune. It is also a Welsh form of the name Lily.
Alys is a Welsh form of Alice.
Angharad means more love. It is an Ancient name found in the Mabinogi a collection of Welsh myths.
Arianwen is made up from the Welsh words arian, meaning silver in English and gwen, the feminine form of gwyn, so White or fair in English. Arianwen was the name of Brychan Brycheiniog (a 5th Century King) and went on to become a saint.
Blodeuwedd is made up of the Welsh words blodau, flowers in English and gwedd, appearance in English. Blodeuwedd can be found in the Mabinogi she is the wife of Lleu Llaw Gyffes and is a woman magically created from flowers.
Cadi is a shortened version of Catrin, which is the Welsh form of Katherine.
Celyn is Welsh for Holly.
Ceridwen supposedly comes from the Welsh words cerdd, song or poet in English, and gwen, meaning white or fair in English. Ceridwen is a Welsh Goddess or Enchantress and is said to be the mother of the poet Taliesin.
Delyth is a modern Welsh name which comes from the Welsh word del,meaning pretty and the suffix -yth.
Dwynwen was another daughter of Brychan Brycheiniog who went on to become a saint. More famous than her sister St Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of lovers and she is still celebrated today on the 25th of January.
Eiry is an older form of the name Eira, meaning snow.
Eleri is again a daughter of Brychan Brycheiniog, there’s also a St Eleri from a couple of centuries later. The River Eleri is also a possible origin of the name.
Elin is the Welsh form of Helen
Ffion is Welsh for Foxglove.
Fflur means flowers or beauty in English. The Welsh form of Flora.
Gwawr is the Welsh word for Dawn.
Gwenllian is made up of the words gwen, white or fair, and possibly lliain, meaning flaxen or lliant, meaning flood or flow. Gwenllian was a popular name among the Welsh royals.
Haf is Welsh for Summer.
Heulwen is Welsh for Sunshine.
Liliwen is made up of the Welsh words lili and gwen, meaning White Lily.
Mair is the Welsh version of Mary. It also means much wished for child.
Medi is Welsh for September.
Megan is a Welsh form of Margaret.
Morwen comes from the Welsh word morwyn which means maiden in English.
Nia is the Welsh form of Niamh, meaning bright in Irish.
Non has been described as coming from the word nun, I have also seen it described as from the Roman word for ninth which I’m more sceptical about. Non was the mother of St David, patron saint of Wales.
Rhianwen is made up from the Welsh words rhiain, maiden in English, and gwen, white or fair.
Sioned is Welsh for the name Janet.
Siwan is Welsh for the name Joan.
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