Celtic Female Names of Wales
Unless otherwise noted, all meanings are from Middle Welsh.
Aberfa — "from the mouth of the river".
Abertha — from a word meaning "sacrifice".
Adain — from a Welsh word meaning "winged".
Adara — "catches birds".
Addfwyn — from a word meaning "meek".
Addiena — "beautiful". Addien.
Adyna — "wretched".
Aelwyd — from words meaning "from the hearth".
Aeron — Welsh name borne in early Celtic mythology by the goddess of battle and slaughter, Agrona. Probably a derivative of modern Welsh aer "battle". Also possibly selected for vocabulary word aeron "fruit, berries". Aeronwy, Aeronwen are also common.
Amser — "time".
Angharad — (ahng-HAHR-ahd) "greatly loved one"; from Welsh/Old Celtic prefix an- + the root car "love" + the noun suffix -ad. Popular in the Middle Ages. Anghard.
Anna — name of one of King Arthur's sisters.
Annwyl — Welsh, from the vocabulary work annwyl "beloved". Anwyl.
Argel — "refuge".
Arglwyddes — from a word meaning "lady".
Argoel — "omen".
Argraff — from a word meaning "impression".
Arial — "vigorous".
Ariana — "silvery"; variant of Arionrhod. Arian.
Arianell — (ah-ree-AHN-elh) from Welsh arian "silver".
Ariene — "silvery".
Aranrhod — possibly composed of Old Celtic elements meaning "huge, round, humped" + "wheel". Arianrhod, Arionrhod.
Arianrhod — (ah-ree-AHN-rhod) from Welsh arian "silver" + rhod "wheel, circle, orbit". In the Mabinogi*, Arianrhod verch* Don was the mother of Dylan eil Ton and Llew Llaw Gyffes. Arionrhod, Aranrhod (ah-RAHN-rhod).
Arianwen — (ah-RAHN-wen) Fr. Welsh arian "silver" + (g)wen "white, fair, blessed, shining, holy". Aranwen (ah-ree-AHN-wen).
Arlais — "from the temple". Artaith.
Armes — from a word meaning "prophetess".
Arthes — "she-bear"; feminine form of Artur.
Arwydd — "sign".
Asgre — from a word meaning "heart".
Auron — (AYR-on) Fr. Welsh aur "gold" + -on, "a divine ending". Euron.
Avenable — a girl in the Merlin legends, she took the covering name of Grisandole and disguised herself as a squire to find work in the Emperor of Rome's court. She was sent to Merlin, who lived in the woods, to discover the meaning of a dream the Emperor had. Merlin interpreted the dream, and also revealed the squire was a woman; she later married the Emperor.
Banon — from a word meaning "queen".
Berth — "beautiful".
Berthog — "wealthy".
Bethan — (BETH-ahn) "consecrated to God"'; Welsh version of Elizabeth. Bet, Beti, Betsan, Betsi.
Blanchfleur — name of Perceval's sister, who was a healer.
Blodeuwedd — (BLOD-eh-weth or blod-AY-weth) from Welsh blodau "flowers" + gwedd "appearance, form". In Mabinogi, she was the wife of Llew Llaw Gyffes. Magicians Gwydion an Math made her out of the flowers of oak, broom and meadow-sweet, and changed her into an owl when she refused to do their bidding. Blanceflor.
Blodwen — (BLOD-wen) from blodyn "flower" + gwen "shining, holy". Blodwen is a classic girl's name. Blodwyn, Blodwin.
Braith — "freckled"; related to Celtic word brec.
Brandgaine — maid to Isolde (sometimes called Iseult); she administered the love potion that bound Tristan and Isolde together forever.
Branwen — (BRAN-wen or BRAN-oo-wen) "white bosomed," or "a girl with black hair and white skin"; from Welsh bran "crow" + gwen "shining, holy". In Mabinogi, Branwen is Bran's sister. They are male and female aspects of the Celtic war deity. Popular name in Wales. Brangwen, Bronwen (BRON-wen or BRON-oo-wen).
Bregus — "frail".
Briallen — (bree-AHL-en) from Welsh briallu "primrose".
Brisen — a great enchantress who brought about the birth of Galahad by drugging Sir Lancelot and told him that Elaine was actually Guinevere.
Bronwen — (BRON-wen) from Welsh bron "breast" + gwen "shining, holy"; also a variant of Branwen. Bronwyn.
Buddug — "victory"; Welsh version of Victoria.
Brynn — (BRIN) "hill".
Cadwyn — "bright chain".
Caethes — from a word meaning "slave".
Cafell — "oracle".
Canaid — from a word meaning "song".
Cari — (KAHR-ee) Fr. Welsh caru "to love"; possibly also "friend" or a form of Caroline. Caryl (KAHR-il); Carys (KAHR-ees).
Caron — "loving or kind-hearted".
Carys — variant of Cari. Caris, Cerys.
Cate — short form of Catrin; form of C/Katherine; also used as an alternative to Kate.
Cath — "cat".
Catrin — (KAHT-reen) "pure"; Welsh form of C/Katherine. Catrin of Berain (1534-1591) was called Mother of Wales because she had so many important descendants. Nicknames: Cati (KAHT-ee); Cadi (KAHD-ee).
Celemon — name of the daughter of Kei in Welsh tales. Kelemon.
Ceri — (KER-ee) Name of two rivers, one in Dyfed and on in Glamorgan. May come from Welsh caru "to love".
Ceridwen — (ker-ID-wen) Poss. from Welsh cerdd "song" + gwen "shining, holy"; or cariad "beloved" + gwen "shining, holy". Ceridwen was a powerful sorceress in the tale of Taliesin. Caridwen, Cerridwen, Cierdwyn.
Cerwen — (KER-wen) possibly means "black" or "white".
Cigfa — daughter of Gwyn Gohoyw and the royal line of Casnar Wledig; and married to Pryderi. Kigva is the legendary name of the wife of Partholon's son.
Clarisant — a name mentioned in the Arthurian legends as the name of Gawain's sister. Clarisse.
Cordelia — variant of Creiddylad.
Corsen — "reed".
Cragen — from a word meaning "shell".
Creiddylad — daughter of Lludd Llaw Ereint; eloped with Gwythyr ap Greidawl, but was kidnapped by Gwynn ap Nudd and takend to the Underworld. Creudylad, Cordelia.
Creirwy — daughter of the goddess Ceridwen; Welsh Triads call her one of the three beautiful maids of Britain.
Cymreiges — "a woman of Wales".
Daron — (DAHR-on) from Welsh dar "oak" + -on, "divine ending". Name of an oak goddess and a river in Caernarvonshire.
Dee — "dark or black sorrow". Dea, Deea, Du, Delia.
Del — (DEL, DEL-ith) from Welsh del "pretty". Delyth (DEL-ith).
Dera — from words meaning "wild spirit" or "fiend". Daere.
Derwen — "from the oak tree"; may be related to the Celtic word druid.
Deryn — "bird". Derrine, Derren, Deryne.
Deverell — "from the riverbank".
Dicra — from a word meaning "slow".
Dierdre — Welsh spelling of Deirdre, "sorrow".
Difyr — "amusing".
Dilys — (DIL-ees) from Welsh dilys "genuine" or "true". Popular name originated in 19th C.
Don — (DOHN-ah) Name of a mother goddess in Welsh mythology, similar to Irish Danu. Celtic root of her name shows up in river names across Europe, including the Danube and the Don. Donn, Dona (DOHN-ah).
Druantia — a Celtic goddess known as Mother of the Tree Calendar and Queen of the Druids.
Drysi — "thorn".
Dwyn — from Welsh dwyn "pleasant, agreeable" + gwen "shining, holy". St. Dwynwen of the 5th C. was prayed to either for help finding sweethearts or help in becoming indifferent to them afterwards. Dwynwen (DWIN-wen).
Dylis — from a word meaning "sincere". Dyllis.
Ebrill — "April" or "one born in April".
Efa — Welsh version of Eve, "life".
Eheubryd — a legendary name belonging to the daughter of Kyvwich.
Eira — (AY-rah) from Welsh eira "snow". Eiry (AY-ree).
Eirianwen — (ayr-YAHN-wen) from Welsh eirian "splendid, bright, fair" + gwen "shining, holy".
Eiriol — (AYR-yol) from Welsh eira "snow". Eirlys (AYR-lees). Both are names or the flower "snowdrop".
Elaine — known as the Lady of Shallot in literature; and Elaine of Corbenic and Elaine de Astolat in Arthurian legend. Elaine de Astolat, "The White", fell in love with Lancelot and died when he did not return her love.
Elen — Welsh form of Helen, "light".
Eleri — (el-AYR-ee) Poss. derived from Welsh el- "greatly, much" + geri "bitter". Name of a river in Ceredigion and a 5th C. saint.
Ellylw — legendary name belonging to the daughter of Neol Hang Cock.
Eluned — (el-EEN-ed) from Welsh -el "greatly, much" + (i)uned "wish, desire". Luned was a handmaiden of the Lady of the Fountain in the Welsh Arthurian romance Owein. She had a magic ring that made the wearer invisible-one of the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain. Eluned's beauty and intelligence were legendary. Luned (LEEN-ed).
Eneuawy — legendary name, and the name of the daughter of Bedwyr.
Enfys — (EN-vees) Welsh word for "rainbow", and currently popular.
Enid — (EE-nid) from a word meaning "sould, life, or spirit". From Breton Bro Wened, a territory corresponding to the are around modern-day Vannes in Brittany. Enid cerch Niwl Iarll (Daughter of the Earl of the Mist) is the heroine of a Welsh Arthurian romance, Geraint mab Erbin. May have originally been a Celtic goddess of sovereignty, an embodiment of the land, to whom the true king must be symbolically married. Enit.
Enrhydreg — daughter of Tuduathar of Welsh legends.
Epona — known to all Celts as the Divine Horse and Great Mare, she was a goddess associated with horses, their breeding, adn all warriors who used horses.
Erdudvyl — daughter of Tryffin of Welsh tales.
Eres — "wonderful".
Essyllt — (ES-ilht) possibly from British adsiltia "she who is gazed at". Another form of Isolde, the tragic heroine of the Tristan saga. Esyld, Esyllt.
Eurneid — daughter of Clydno in Welsh tales.
Eurolwyn — daughter of Gwydolwyn in Welsh legends.
Eyslk — "fair".
Ffanci — Welsh version of Fancy.
Ffion — (FEE-on) from ffion "foxglove". Ffiona (fee-OH-nah).
Fflur — (FLEER) from the Welsh word for "flower". In legend, Julius Caesar kidnapped her from Britain and took her to Rome. Her beloved Caswallon, disguised as a shoemaker, followed and won her back.
Ffraid — (FRAYD) Welsh form of Brigid, the Irish saint.
Gaenor — (GAY-nor) form of Gwenhwyfar or Guinevere; popular in 19th and 20th C.'s. Gaynor.
Ganieda — sometimes called Gwenddydd, said to live in the forest and give prophecies; possibly the sister of Merlin.
Garan — "stork".
Genevieve — (prob. fr. Celt) possibly a variant of Guinevere.
Gladys — (GLAH-dis) from Welsh gwlad "land, nation, sovereignty". Gwladys (goo-LAH-dis).
Glenna — "from the valley or glen".
Glenys — (GLEN-is) from Welsh glan "riverbank, shore". Glan, Ghleanna (Irish Gaelic).
Glynis — (GLIN-is) "one who lives in the glen or valley"; from Welsh glyn "valley"; feminine form of Glyn. Glynys.
Goewin — fabled name of the daughter of Pebin; she was the virgin footholder for King Math until she was raped by Gilfaethwy. Math married her to erase her disgrace.
Goleuddydd — "bright day"; listed as the mother of Culhwch in Welsh stories.
Gorawen — "joy".
Guinevere — "fair one"; a variant spelling of Gwenhwyfar; in Arthurian legend, the daughter of Leodegrance of Cameliard, and the wife of King Arthur. She was found guilty of adultery and banished to the Amesbury monastery in Malory's story. Modern variants Guenevere, Gwenevere.
Gwaeddan — name of the daughter of Kynvelyn in Welsh tales.
Gwanwyn — "spring".
Gwawr — (GWOWR) Welsh word for "dawn". Popular in recent years.
Gwen — (GWEN) "perception or discovery of the meaning of the light of the Otherworld"; from Welsh gwen, gwyn "white, shining, holy". Also a shortened form of Guinivere. Gwyn (GWIN).
Gwenda — (GWEN-dah) from Welsh gwen "shining, holy" + da "good"; "fair and good".
Gwendolyn — (gwen-DOHL-en) variant of Guinevere meaning "white brow"; from the Welsh gwen "shining, holy" + dolen "link". Gwendolen.
Gwener — Welsh version of Venus, goddess of love.
Gweneth — from the Welsh words meaning "white, blessed one"; another sources says "wheat". Gwynedd, Gwyneth, Gwenith (GWEN-ith).
Gwenhwyfar — (gwen-HWIV-ahr) Welsh original of Guinevere, from gwen "shining, holy" + hwyfer "phantom, spirit, fairy". One of the most common names among Welsh women fr. Middle Ages until the 19th C., esp. in N. Wales.
Gwenledyr — legendary name of the daughter of Gwawrddur Hunchback.
Gwenith — (GWEN-ith) Welsh word for "wheat".
Gwenllian — (gwen-LHEE-ahn) from Welsh gwen "shining, holy" + lliant "stream". Gwenllian has been popular since the Middle Ages. Gwenlliant (gwen-LHEE-ahnt)
Gwenn Alarch — legendary name of the daughter of Kynwal.
Gwenno — (GWEN-oh) Nickname for Gwen names.
Gwerfyl — (GWAYR-vil) Gwerful Mechain was a poet of 15th C. Powys, one of the few early Welsh women poets whose work has been preserved. Gwerful (GWAYR-vil).
Gwladys — (goo-LAH-dis) from the Welsh gwlad "land, nation, or sovereignty"; some sources say "a small sword"; while others say it derives from the gladiolus flower. Gladys.
Gwyneira — Welsh in origin meaning "white snow"; from gwyn "white" + eira "snow". Originating from Penclawwd on the Gower Peninsular.
Gwyneth — (GWIN-eth) from Welsh gwen "shining, holy" + geneth "girl", or from gwynaeth "happiness, bliss". Gwyn.
Hafgan — (HAHV-gahn) from Welsh haf "summer" + can "song"; male or female name.
Hafren — (HAHV-ren) from Celtic Sabrina, goddess of the river Severn.
Heledd — (HEL-eth) from Welsh hy-, a particle inidicating "goodness" + ledd "wound".
Hellawes — an enchantress said to live in the Castle Nigramours (Necromancy); she died when she failed to win Lancelot's love.
Heuldys — (HIL-dis) "sun setting (or rising?) on the hill".
Heulwen — (HIL-wen) from Welsh heul "sun" + gwen "shining, holy". Heulyn.
Heulyn — (HIL-een) "ray of sunshine".
Hywela — (huh-WEL-ah) feminine form of Hywel, from hywel "eminent".
Idelle — Welsh version of Ida.
Igerna — wife of Gorlois of Cornwall who was loved by Uther Pendragon; she became the mother of Arthur through shapeshifting deception of Merlin's making.
Iola — (YOH-lah) feminine form of Iolo, which comes from Iowerth. All three derive from the Norse ior "lord", and Welsh gwerth "worth, value".
Isolde — "fair one"; name of the herione in the Tristan saga and the name of a princess in Arthurian sagas. Isolda, Isolt, Iseult, Essyllt, Esyld, Esyllt.
Jenifer — from Welsh meaning "friend of peace"; Old Welsh "white phantom, white spirit"; and a variant of Guinevere. The spelling with one 'n' is traditional. Jennifer.
Lilybet — "God's promise".
Linette — from a Welsh word meaning "idol".
Llinos — (LHEE-nos) Welsh word for "linnet", which is a bird.
Llio — (LHEE-oh) Originally a nickname for Gwenllian, but now a name of its own.
Lowri — (LOW-ree) "crown of laurels"; from Latin laura "laurel"; Welsh version of Laurel or Laura. Popular in N. Wales.
Lysanor — mother of one of Arthur's illegitimate sons.
Mab — means "baby" in Welsh. Mab was the queen of Faery in Welsh tales.
Mabli — Welsh version of Mabel, "loveable".
Maelona (may-LOH-nah) "divine princess"; nickname Lona (LOH-nah).
Mair — (MIR) Mair + gwen "shining, holy"; Welsh form of Mary, "bitter". Meira (MAYR-ah), Mairwen (MIR-wen).
Maledisant — "ill speech"; wife of the knight Bruno le Noir.
Mali — Welsh form of Molly, which is a form of Mary, "bitter".
Marged — (MAHR-ged) Welsh form of Margaret. Marared (mahr-AHR-ed), Mared (MAHR-ed), Margaid (MAHR-gyahd); nickname Megan (MEG-ahn).
Meghan — nickname and form of Margaret; meaning either "pearl" or "mighty one"; possibly from the novel "The Thorn Birds". Megan.
Melangell — (mel-AHNG-elh) Melangell, Welsh patron saint of animals, was a 6th C. Irish princess who hid a hare from the hounds, and given land for a convent in Wales. There, the hare is called "Melangell's little lamb", and until recently not hunted.
Meleri — (mel-AYR-ee) from Welsh my "my" + Eleri, name of a 5th C. saint, the grandmother of St. David.
Meredith — either "magnificent" or "protector or guardian from the sea".
Meriel — (MER-yel) Welsh adaption of a name derived from Old Irish muir "sea" + gel "bright". Meryl (MER-eel).
Modlen — Welsh version of Magdalene, "tower".
Modron — "mother". Modron was the mother of Mabon, whose father came from the Otherworld.
Mon — (MOAN) Mon Mam Cymru is a Welsh saying that means "Mon, the mother of Wales". Mon is also the name for the island of Angelsey. Mona (MOH-nah).
Morfudd — (MOHR-vith) poss. from Welsh mawr "great, big" + either budd "benefit, victory" or gwyd "sight, knowledge". Name of a woman immortalized by the 14th C. poet Dafydd ap Gwilym. Morfyd (MOH-vith).
Morgan — (MOHR-gahn) from Welsh mor "sea" or mawr "great, big" + can "bright" or cant "circle" or geni "born". Could mean anything from "big circle" to "sea-born". Most famous Morgan is probably Morgan la Fee, King Arthur's half-sister and famed sorceress. Morgaine, Morgainne, Morgana, Morgant (MOHR-gahnt).
Morgana — "edge of the sea".
Morgause — daughter of Gorlois of Cornwall and Igerna, a half-sister of Arthur by whom she bore Mordred. Margawse, Morgose.
Morvudd — legendary name of the daughter of Uryen.
Morwen — (MOHR-wen) from Welsh morwyn "maiden". Morwenna (mohr-WEN-ah).
Myfanwy — (muh-VAHN-wee or mih-FAN-uh-wee) from Welsh my "my" + manwy "fine, rare". Myfanawy; nicknames Myfi (MUH-vee), Myfina (muh-VEE-nah).
Nerys — (NER-ees) from Welsh ner "lord", and a modern form of the medieval name Generys.
Nesta — (NEST-ah) popular Welsh version of Agnes. Annest (AHN-nest), Nest (NEST). 11th C. Nest verch Rhys ap Tewdwr was known as "Helen of Wales" for her beauty and the trouble it caused.
Neued — legendary name of the daughter of Kyvwich.
Nia — (NEE-ah) Welsh form of Irish name Niamh, from Old Irish niam "luster, sheen, brilliance".
Nimue — (NIM-oo-ay) a moon goddess who was sometimes called Viviene, Niniane, or Lady of the Lake.
Nona — (NOH-nah) Mother of St. David, patron saint of Wales. Also said she was a cousin of King Arthur. Nicknames Non (NOHN), Nonita (noh-NEE-tah). St. Nona's Feast day is March 2, the day after her son's.
Olwen — (OHL-wen) "white footprint" or "shining track"; from ol "track, trace" + gwen "shining, holy". Olwen was the daughter of the giant Ysbaddaden in the early Welsh tale Kulhwch and Olwen. White footprint.
Owena — "born to nobility"; feminine form of Owen.
Penarddun — legendary name of the daughter of Beli.
Petra — (PET-rah) Welsh feminine form of Peter.
Ragnell — enchanted into an ugly form of the Loathly Lady, she aided Gawain in finding the answer to the riddle "what do women desire?" He married her, not knowing that with the first kiss she would become beautiful.
Rathtyen — name of the daughter of Clememyl in Welsh tales.
Rhan — "fate".
Rhawn — from words meaning "coarse or long hair".
Rhedyn — from a word meaning "fern".
Rhiamon — "witch".
Rhian — (RHEE-an) from Welsh rhiain "maiden". Rhian is popular for its resemblance to that of the goddess Rhiannon. Rhiain (RHEE-in).
Rhiannon — (rhee-AHN-on) from Celtic Rigantona "divine queen". In legend, Rhiannon's birds sang more sweetly then any birds of the mortal world, but Rhiannon herself is notable for her habit of speaking her mind forthrightly and with wit. A mythological nymph.
Rhianwen — (rhee-AHN-wen) from Welsh rhiain "maiden" + gwen "shining, holy".
Rhodd — "gift".
Rhonda — from a word meaning "grand".
Rhonwen — (RHON-wen) poss. from Welsh rhon "spear" + gwen "shining, holy"; other sources say it means "white hair" and related to the name Rowena. Nickname: Rhona (RHOH-nah).
Rhosyn — from the Welsh word meaning "rose".
Rowena — "white- or fair-haired".
Saeth — "arrow".
Saffir — Welsh word for "sapphire".
Sarff — possibly means "snake".
Seren — (SER-en) Welsh word for "star". Sirona, from the same Celtic root, was an ancient Gaulish goddess of hot springs.
Sian — (SHAN) "God's gracious gift"; Welsh form of Jane or Jean. Siani (SHAN-ee), Sioned (SHON-ed).
Sioned — (SHON-ed) variant of Sian; Welsh form of Janet.
Siwan — (SHOO-ahn) "bright as the sun"; from sul "sun" + gwen "shining, holy"; Welsh form of Joan.
Taffy — from a word meaning "beloved". Taffia, Taffine.
Talaith — "diadem" (a crown or headband worn as a sign of sovereignty; royal authority or status).
Talar — from the Welsh words meaning "from the headland in the field".
Tanwen — (TAHN-wen) from Welsh tan "fire" + gwen "shining, holy". Tangwen, legendary name of the daughter of Gweir.
Tarian — "shield".
Tarran — "from the knoll".
Tegan — (TEG-ahn) from Welsh teg "pretty, fine" + dim. -an. Name of an early saint and a river in Ceredigion.
Tegau — (TEG-ay) from Welsh teg "fair, pretty, fine". In legend, Tegau Eurfron (Golden-Breast) was the wife of Caradoc Freichfras (Strong-Arm) and one of the 3 Faithful Women of the Island of Britain. She owned a mantle (one of the 13 Treasures of Britain) that would reach the ground only when worn by a chaste woman, and which became shorter the more faithless its wearer. Tegau was reputedly the only woman of King Arthur's court who could wear the mantle at full length.
Tegeirian — (teg-AYR-yahn) from Welsh teg "pretty, fine" + eirian "beautiful". Also the Welsh word for "orchid".
Tegwen — (TEG-wen) teg "pretty, fine" + gwen "shining, holy".
Teleri — (tel-AYR-ee) from Welsh ty "your" + Eleri, name of an early saint and of a river in Dyfed. Teleri verch Peul was one of the maidens of King Arthur's court mentioned in Kulhwch and Olwen.
Telyn — "harp".
Terrwyn — from the word meaning "brave".
Toreth — "abundant".
Torlan — from words meaning "from the river bank".
Torri — "break".
Trevina — "homestead"; feminine version of Trevor.
Tristana — "clamor".
Una — (OO-nah) from the Irish Gaelic word meaning "white wave".
Vala — "chosen".
Vanora — variant of Guinevere, "white wave".
Vivian — legendary name from the tales of King Arthur, also known as Nimue. Viviane, Vivianne, Viviene, Vivienne.
Wenda — variant of Gwendolyn.
Winnifred — variant of Guinevere, "white wave".
Wynne — variant of Gwen, from gwyn "fair, white"; form of Wynn, "light complexion".
Ysbail — Welsh version of Isabel, "consecrated to god".
Yseult — alternate form of Isolde.
* See the Notes page