Iver, Ivar, Ivor? Pronunciation Help

[name_m]Hi[/name_m] there, long time reader, first time poster.

My wife and I are expecting twins this [name_f]September[/name_f] and one of the names I [name_u]LOVE[/name_u] is [name_m]Iver[/name_m].

The only thing is… I like it to be pronounced “EYE-[name_f]Ver[/name_f]” and not “EE-Vor” or “EE -Vurr”. The name has various origins from Scandi, Scotish, Welsh and English because of the Viking history behind the name as they migrated all over Europe.

Can anyone tell me which spelling and origin would help ensure the pronunciation “EYE-[name_f]Ver[/name_f]”?

If we did choose the name for one of our boys, when people ask “where’s that name from?” I don’t want to say “It’s Scandinavian” or whatever only to be corrected by someone saying “you mean EE-Vurr!?”

Any thought or help would be much appreciated!


I think to get the EYE-ver pronunciation, [name_m]Iver[/name_m] makes the most sense. I’ll admit when I saw the thread I thought it was “ee-VAR” or something. I’d say [name_m]Iver[/name_m] is the most obvious for the pronunciation you want (following the same grammar rules as the word diver).

Congrats on the twins!

It seems like [name_m]Iver[/name_m] fits best with the pronunciation you’re after

I love [name_m]Ivor[/name_m]! As the English form of the Welsh [name_m]Ifor[/name_m], it’s usually pronounced the way you like it, “EYE-ver”. It might occasionally get the Welsh pronunciation (IV-or), but the vast majority of bearers pronounce it your way, so I think you’re safe with [name_m]Ivor[/name_m]. It also happens to be my favourite spelling – I think it’s gorgeous. :slight_smile:

I would stay away from [name_m]Ivar[/name_m], since, as you know, it’s normally pronounced “EE-var”. [name_m]Iver[/name_m] is Scandinavian as well, which would open up ambiguities with the pronunciation.

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I should have also mentioned that listening to them all on Forvo might clarify things!

If I was a boy I was going to be named [name_m]Ivan[/name_m] by my Ukrainian father - pronounced EE-[name_u]Van[/name_u]. So that is how I would automatically pronounce these names. However, I think if you used [name_m]Iver[/name_m] and prounouced it EYE-[name_f]Ver[/name_f], everyone else would too!

Thanks for all the responses! That’s a great help.

Now I just need to lobby my wife some more to see if it can make the final cut :wink:

At the moment my ideal name to pair it with would be
We’re having to boys and I think [name_u]Ellis[/name_u] & [name_m]Iver[/name_m] sound great together. They’ve got the heavy vowel sound which seems to be the key to a great name these days but an uncommon yet familer feel.

Both have Welsh origins too, although that’s not important.

I think [name_u]Ellis[/name_u] and [name_m]Iver[/name_m] sound marvelous together :). (

Are you in the states? For what it’s worth, my son is named [name_m]Ivo[/name_m] and almost everyone initially calls him EYE-vo when reading his name. I actually pronounce [name_m]Ivo[/name_m] as EE-vo (son wasnamed after a family member from continental EU), but would pronounce [name_m]Iver[/name_m] and [name_m]Ivor[/name_m] as EYE-vuhr.

Also, I [name_u]LOVE[/name_u] the idea of twins [name_u]Ellis[/name_u] and [name_m]Iver[/name_m]/[name_m]Ivor[/name_m]. That’s one of my favorite twin-set names I’ve heard in a long time!

[name_u]Ellis[/name_u] and [name_m]Iver[/name_m] = perfection!

My slight personal preference is for the [name_m]Ivor[/name_m] spelling, which I’d pronounce “EYE-ver”; however, if [name_m]Iver[/name_m] is your preferred spelling then I think that works too and it’s probably the most likely to get your preferred pronunciation.

[name_f]Welcome[/name_f] to the forums and good luck!

[name_m]Iver[/name_m] makes the most sense for the pronunciation you want, followed by [name_m]Ivor[/name_m]. Though honestly my first inclination with any spelling would be to assume it’s pronounced EYE-ver. And I feel like that’s probably true for most people, at least where I am in the US.

[name_m]Iver[/name_m] seems most intuitive, especially with [name_m]Bon[/name_m] [name_m]Iver[/name_m] in the scene.

I’m in Australia. It’s great to know most people’s instinct is to pronounce it “EYE-ver”.

My wife is a bit hesitant on the name so hopefully your thoughts will help sway her. Although given how much she’s going through for the babies no doubt she will have the final say haha (as she should!)

Thanks for all the kind words :smiley:

[name_m]Iver[/name_m] = EE-vehrr
[name_m]Ivar[/name_m] = EE-varr (also an [name_f]Ikea[/name_f] shelf I think)
[name_m]Ivor[/name_m] = EE-vor

Here’s the thing. There’s simply no way to get the pronunciation you want, which is English!, if you also want to claim a Skandinavian name.

If you only love the pronunciation EYE-ver, there is actually a Faroese name, Eyvør. Two things though, #1 it’s EY-voerr, still not EYE, but closer. #2, it’s a girl name.

I can only think to stick with an English or Scottish etc name where the I at the beginning is actually pronounced EYE.

I have a lot of Ivans and Ivos and Ivas in my family, and it makes me cringe to here them be pronounced EYE-van and EYE-vo and EYE-va. It’s just wrong. People will correct you and you will be annoyed. Better not to go down that route :slight_smile:

ETA: There is also Einar, EY-narr. I’m not sure if there are Skandinavian names that are pronounced with the EYE sound, but maybe I misread and Skandinavian is not a requirement and just happens to me the kind of name you like the most. Just maybe as an FYI that Nordic names starting with Ei might be closer to your desired pronunciation.

[name_m]Hi[/name_m] there!
I didn’t realize the issue you were referring to until I got to the end of the replies. I pronounced the long I in all of them for example, EYE-vor, EYE-ver, and EYE-var. [name_m]Don[/name_m]'t know if this helps or not.

I am Australian and I would pronounce [name_m]Ivor[/name_m] the way that you want it pronounced. I have never seen this name with any other spelling except for the lead singer of icehouse, [name_f]Iva[/name_f] [name_m]Davies[/name_m], who was born [name_m]Ivor[/name_m].

I would stress the ‘a’ and the ‘o’ in [name_m]Ivar[/name_m] and [name_m]Ivor[/name_m]. I say [name_m]Iver[/name_m] as ‘EYE-ver’ though and I feel like that spelling would provide the least amount of pronunciation problems.

Definitely [name_m]Iver[/name_m]!

I love this name (and my husband is really campaigning for it)! I personally think English speakers are almost always going to approach the pronunciation of the name as ‘Eye-ver’. I think the spellings ‘[name_m]Iver[/name_m]’ and ‘[name_m]Ivor[/name_m]’ get you to that pronunciation the easiest, and [name_m]Ivar[/name_m] may lead to other pronunciations. But that’s just my guess.

I’m also Australian. I think most people here would pronounce all of those spellings with an “EYE” sound (as we tend to do with [name_m]Ivan[/name_m]), unless they were quite familiar with European languages.

My preferred spelling is [name_m]Ivor[/name_m], but [name_m]Iver[/name_m] works well too. I agree that someone reading “[name_m]Iver[/name_m]” would probably pronounce it as “EYE-vuh” here, but I think someone hearing “EYE-vuh” would probably spell it as [name_m]Ivor[/name_m] (if that makes sense): [name_m]Ivor[/name_m] will occasionally get mispronounced, but [name_m]Iver[/name_m] will get misspelt sometimes. You might have to decide which of those you find least problematic.

[name_m]Ivar[/name_m] might be more likely to be pronounced with a more even emphasis on both syllables (EYE-VAR).

Whichever option you choose, you might get the occasional comment about the traditional pronunciation, and some people (like me) might try to pronounce it the “authentic” way if we saw it on paper, but overall I think you won’t need to correct people as often as you would if you wanted it pronounced with the “Ee-” sound.

[name_m]Ivor[/name_m]/[name_m]Iver[/name_m] and [name_u]Ellis[/name_u] work really well together.