Welsh Name for our son

[name]Hi[/name] All,
My partner is not only welsh but is from a welsh speaking town where everyone speaks welsh and has very welsh names, my partner included. I am almost 8mths pregnant with our first child and we cant seem to agree on any names. Some of the names which we both kind of like are, [name]Caleb[/name], [name]Callum[/name], [name]Jake[/name] & [name]Ryan[/name] - although in his heart of hearts I know my partner would love a welsh name for our son.The problem is that we are living in New Zealand which is where I am from and I don’t think many of the traditional welsh names are that pronounceable to non-welsh speakers. Many people use welsh names but do not pronounce them the proper welsh way, which is not going to be an option for us. If we use a welsh name we will have to pronounce it the right way. An example would be [name]Rhys[/name], this is a welsh name that most people pronounce as [name]Reece[/name], however in the welsh language it is pronounced differently. Also, my partner is not that keen on most of the welsh names which are easy to pronounce in English, like [name]Evan[/name], [name]Ewan[/name], [name]Owen[/name] etc. So far we only have two welsh names on our list, [name]Bryn[/name] - which we later took off as it is a traditional boys name in wales, which seems to becoming popular as a girls name in [name]America[/name] and I am not keen on unisex names. The only other welsh one we have is [name]Ioan[/name] - pronounced [name]Yo[/name]-An. So I guess what I am asking is a) [name]How[/name] useable do you think a name like Ioan is to English speakers and also whether anyone has any other suggestions for welsh names, which are easier to say in English and not too weird!

Thanks for the help!

Here is some suggestions: I’ve marked * as my favourites

Aled *
[name]Dafydd[/name] *-I live in Australia and know of two people called this, both haven’t had much trouble with it
[name]Maxen[/name] *
[name]Rhodri[/name] *

As for [name]Ioan[/name], I think there is bound to be spelling and pronounciation issues but it shouldn’t be too much of a problem.

Well, I’m from NZ with Welsh heritage (albeit washed out, but I know some of the sounds… :)) and I’d hesitate for a while deciding how to pronounce [name]Ioan[/name]… I actually think I’d end up saying [name]Ian[/name]! I think with a lot of Welsh names you’d have to expect to correct people’s pronunciation at first, but then once they get it they’d be fine. In fact, just today I had to correct a friend who was butchering [name]Sian[/name]! [name]Don[/name]'t think it’s a huge problem though. Gaelic names are all over the place here - there’s the [name]Niamh[/name], [name]Eibhlin[/name], [name]Aisling[/name] trend at the moment and people don’t struggle with them, so I’m sure they’ll be ok with Welsh names too.

My cousin is [name]Bryn[/name] and I know of a few other boys with the same name. I love it. I wouldn’t let the fact that it’s a popular girls name in [name]America[/name] put you off…Unless you’re going to live there at some stage!

I also knew a gorgeous Welsh guy called [name]Dai[/name]. So I’m suggesting that name too :slight_smile:

As a second thought, how do you pronounce [name]Rhys[/name] in Welsh? I always thought it was pronounced as [name]Reese[/name] which I must admit I’m not a fan of the sound.

Well, there are other languages that use names that are not intuitive to English speakers and we still use them over here. Like [name]Siobhan[/name], Aoifa (spelled wrong I think), [name]Aisling[/name]…things like that, and with an ever diverse society, I think names like that are beginning to be common place. Tell people how to say it, and after a few times, people should get it.
I’d love to know how [name]Rhys[/name] is pronounce in Welsh :slight_smile:

Here’s some Welsh names I could find and I think they would all work well in in English (forgive me if they’re not all accurate). I’ll * my favorites


[name]Ioan[/name] is great! I have Welsh heritage, too, so I’m always interested in Welsh names. [name]Bryn[/name] and [name]Rhys[/name] are two of my favorites. :slight_smile: I think if you pronounce it for them, then it won’t be a big deal. It is an unusual name, so you’ll probably have to pronounce it and spell it just like you would any other unique name, but if you really want to honor your son’s Welsh history, I would think it’d be worth it. It’d be worth it for me, anyway! :slight_smile:

The only other Welsh boys’ name I can think of right now that I don’t think has been mentioned is [name]Ianto[/name]. I’ve always thought it was so cool! Is [name]Gavin[/name] Welsh? I thought it was but I’m not 100% sure. It may be a bit too mainstream for him, but I do like it a lot.

Good luck!

Yeah, I’m wondering how [name]Rhys[/name] is pronounced. To me [name]Reese[/name] rhymes with priest “rees” while [name]Reece[/name] and [name]Rhys[/name] rhyme with breeze “reez”

[name]Iwan[/name] may have less trouble with pronunciation

[name]Don[/name]'t understand why American trends would matter if you’re in NZ. It doesn’t matter to me and I live here, [name]Bryn[/name] is one of my top boy names. Also like


Thank you so much for all of the feedback, it is all so helpful.

First let me answer your questions about the pronunciation of [name]Rhys[/name], first of all the “H” sound is not silent and is in fact the most significant sounding part, whereas the r at the start is quite soft, as for the ys that is pronounced like “iss”, so combined the pronunciation is kind of like “r-H-iss” - so definitely know ee-type sound you have when pronouncing it like [name]Reese[/name]/[name]Reece[/name].

[name]Sunshine[/name] Kid
- My partners name is in fact [name]Dafydd[/name] and although he has trouble with people saying it, I love it. Also [name]Dai[/name] is a nickname for [name]Dafydd[/name] so I quite liked the idea of naming our [name]Son[/name] this as it would kind of be like naming him after his Dad. Only thing that puts me off is that it sounds like “Die” and am not sure how I feel about it sounding like, Die as in Death :eek: My partner is not keen on [name]Maxen[/name], which I loved - or [name]Rhodri[/name] but I will ask about Aled.

[name]Lauren[/name] [name]Kay[/name] & Nat108
- Thanks for the advice about [name]Bryn[/name], I am going to stick it back on the list. It might be years before it starts becoming popular as a girls name over here and by that time I doubt I will care.

Dantea - I like the name [name]Griffin[/name] too, but it conjures up images of the mythical creature, does anyone else have this problem or is it just me. Also, I like the idea of nick name [name]Cole[/name] for Colwyn as well

- [name]Gavin[/name] is a really popular welsh name actually, unfortunately my partner knows too many people with that name. [name]Ianto[/name] was one that he actually suggested and secretly I quite like, but I was concerned people would have no idea how to say it. It is pronounced “[name]Yan[/name]-To”, is this very straight forward do you think?

Thanks Again

Holy cow I forgot how much I [name]LOVE[/name] Braith! Always thought Braith Anasta had the coolest name ever :slight_smile:

And yes, definitely stick [name]Bryn[/name] back on the list. I love it and I’m not convinced it will get popular here as a girls name actually. I went to primary school with a girl [name]Brynn[/name] from [name]America[/name] so it’s been a girl’s name over there for a while and still hasn’t caught…

Here is a few more suggestions:

[name]Elian[/name] -though I think this is a unisex name, or a variant of one
Hefin -I like that it means summer

Why not go for [name]Gareth[/name] or [name]Llewellyn[/name]? They are Welsh names that are easily pronounced and understood and you could give him the middle name of [name]David[/name].

The name you mentioned would get butchered for sure.

I think [name]Ianto[/name] is pretty easy for people to catch on to. I also didn’t think [name]Ioan[/name] would be such a problem, especially with the actor [name]Ioan[/name] Gruffudd who is pretty well known. I’m also sure [name]Ianto[/name] from Torchwood would help people with pronunciation problems.

Thanks for all the feedback and lists, I went through all the suggestions with my partner and Braith was the only one that made the cut, but he agrees [name]Bryn[/name] is back on and we will stick with [name]Ioan[/name] as well. Another contender is [name]Griffith[/name], this is spelled many ways in welsh but the “[name]Griffith[/name]” version is the easiest to interpret. I quite like the idea of [name]Griff[/name] as a nn as well. What does everyone think of [name]Griffith[/name], and what is the best welsh name from our small list of

[name]Bryn[/name], [name]Ioan[/name], Braith & [name]Griffith[/name]?


Maybe Aneirin, Macsen or Osian? A little bit unusual even in [name]Wales[/name] but still used. I have a friend whose son is named Osian.

[name]Just[/name] noticed you’ve got your short list! I really like [name]Bryn[/name] and [name]Ioan[/name]. Not that the other two are bad at all though!

I love your short list. I would definitely spell [name]Griffith[/name] in the Anglicised way as opposed to the Welsh way. There are so many Welsh actors nowadays that I can’t imagine that anyone would have trouble recognising either [name]Ioan[/name] or [name]Ianto[/name], both of which I love. [name]Bryn[/name] and Braith are terrific. I also love [name]Madog/name, [name]Emlyn[/name], [name]Geraint[/name], and [name]Dai[/name] (swoon)…What about [name]Huw[/name]?

From your new list I [name]LOVE[/name] [name]Griffith[/name] and Braith is so cool (glad I suggested it ^^). I would pick either one of those. The spelling is pretty intuitive and the pronunciation shouldn’t be much of an issue with either ^^

I absolutely love the name [name]Rhys[/name]! <3 Sorry, I’m always going to pronounce it like Reese … lol I think you should go for Rhys :slight_smile: Sure, people aren’t going to pronounce it correctly, but you can pronounce it properly at home.

Out of the four you agree on, Ryan is my all time favorite <3

Oh, I love [name]Ianto[/name] even more for you, then! It’s such a cool name, and I definitely think it’s usable. It seems even more straightforward than [name]Ioan[/name], to me. Would you use a Welsh MN, too? I think [name]Ianto[/name] [name]Caleb[/name] seriously be the coolest name ever, haha.

Good luck!

ETA: [name]Just[/name] saw your short list–of those four options, I like [name]Bryn[/name] the best!

I’m definitely torn between [name]Bryn[/name] and Braith! [name]Love[/name] them both. Neither one is popular round these parts but I’ve met a few boys called [name]Bryn[/name] and none called Braith! So Braith possibly wins my vote by a very very slight margin…

I really like [name]Griffith[/name] and [name]Ioan[/name]. I think the nickname [name]Griff[/name] is darling.