Quick Facts on Bryan
- Celtic, Gaelic, Irish
- Number of syllables:
- Ranking popularity:
Etymology & Historical Origin - Bryan
Bryan is a spelling variation of the more traditional name Brian. The name comes from the Old Celtic word “brígh” which means ‘noble, strong, virtuous.’ The name was especially popularized in Ireland in the Middle Ages influenced by the last High King of Ireland (Brian Boru) who reigned between 1002 and 1014. Brian defeated the Vikings at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014 but died of wounds sustained in the battle. Brian has been a perennial favorite in Ireland which was adopted by other English-speaking countries. Bryan is the more preferred spelling in the United States.
Popularity of the Name Bryan
The spelling “Bryan” actually shows up on the U.S. popularity charts before the name Brian (which we were surprised to see given that Brian is the traditional Irish form of the name). Bryan lingers on the charts with low to moderate usage until the latter half of the 20th century. The name hits the Top 100 list in 1959, and it’s stayed there for the past 50+ years. Bryan experienced its heaviest popularity in the 1970’s and 1980’s, during which time it hovered inside the Top 50. Today the name is dangerously close to exiting the Top 100, and yet it’s still the more preferred spelling to Brian in the United States.
Popularity of the Boy Name Bryan
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Bryan
Literary Characters of the Baby Name Bryan
Brian (Celtic Mythology) Brian is a foolhardy ruffian in Celtic legend. Story has it that this reckless warrior had the audacity to kill the father of an Irish god, Lugh of the Long Arm, and is forced to perform a series of impossible tasks in order to appease the god. Brian and his brothers must travel to faraway places collecting magical weapons for Lugh – which they actually accomplish – but return home somewhat worse for wear. They are pummeled in the last task, and plead for one of the magical instruments in order to save their lives. Lugh denies them, causing them all to bleed to death. Lugh reminds the poor saps that his own father was not granted the opportunity to defend himself, and nor shall they!
Popular Songs on Bryan
Bryan - We cannot find any well-known or significantly popular songs featuring the name Bryan [see Brian].
Children's Books on the Baby Name Bryan
Bryan - We cannot find any children’s books featuring a character with the first name Bryan [see Brian].
Famous People Named Bryan
Famous People Named Bryan - Bryan Adams (musician); Bryan Brown (actor); Bryan Cranston (actor); Bryan Ferry (musician); Bryan Smyth (Irish singer); Bryan Trottier (hockey player)
Children of Famous People Named Bryan
Famous People who Named their Son Bryan - Barry Bostwick (actor)
Bryan - Boy Baby Name - Historic Figures
Irish High King Brian Boru (circa 941-1014) - Brian Boru was born Brian Mac Cennétig in Ireland around 941. He was perhaps the greatest military leader Ireland has ever known and his life deeds were legendary. In 978 he led his warriors to victory and took the kingship of all of Munster. Rulers of other provinces took note and worried he might want more territory. Brian did not back down and eventually took over most of the southern half of Ireland. Not content to stop there, Brian went about northern Ireland reinforcing his claim to it. The problem with building an empire is that you can’t watch your old territories when you’re going about conquering new ones. Eventually Dublin and Leinster rebelled which culminated into the Battle of Clontarf. Brian’s army still won, but Brian himself died. He earned his name as 'Brian of the Tributes' (Brian Boru) by collecting tributes from the minor rulers of Ireland and used the money to restore monasteries and libraries that had been destroyed during the invasions.
Personality of the Boy Name Bryan
Romance is the hallmark of the Six personality. They exude nurturing, loving, and caring energy. Sixes are in love with the idea of love in its idealized form - and with their magnetic personalities, they easily draw people toward them. Like the number Two personality, they seek balance and harmony in their life and the world at large. They are conscientious and service-oriented, and a champion for the underdog. These personalities naturally attract money and are usually surrounded by lovely material objects - but their human relationships are always primary. They thrive in giving back to others rather than being motivated by their own desires. This is when they achieve great things. Sixes are natural teachers, ministers and counselors.
Variations of the Baby Name - Bryan