Naming the Fishes

A Blog For Name Lovers Everywhere


If you are looking for an Irish name thats different in the crowd of Aidans and Erins, Firinne might just be the name for you.

In the late 19th century there was a national interest in the Irish language and Irish Gaelic culture in Ireland, aptly named the Gaelic Revival. This was inspired by the growing nationalism movement that started in the early 19th century. Gaelic had diminished as a spoken language under English rule so much that it was confined to isolated rural areas. The majority of Ireland spoke English.

Although the movement wasn’t as widespread as the political movement in Ireland there came to be a resurgence of Irish names (word names in particular). For so long it had been ingrained in people’s minds that the use of Irish names was shameful, which explains the use of Catholic and English names in Ireland. But with the Gaelic Revival those feelings of shame seemed to fade away. Here we see the beginnings of Firinne as a name.

Firinne is the Old Irish word for ‘truth’ coined during the Gaelic Revival. Pronounced FEER in yeh it may seem a hurdle for non-Gaelic speakers but at least its easier than Saoirse’s Seer sha or Caoimhe’s Keeva. However it is a rare name even in Ireland for it has never entered the charts, but it has had some usage.

Another interesting fact is that Firinne has some part in Irish mythology, albeit a small part but a part nether less. Donn, the Lord of the Dead/Storms lived in a place called Cnoc Firinne “hill of truth” (see picture above). Whenever there was incoming bad weather Donn would forewarn the local people by gathering up rain clouds around him on the hill.

This piece of mythology was so iconic that thousands of farm families and workers would make the annual pilgrimage to the summit Cnoc Firinne every Béltaine for tens of centuries… carrying bouquets of flowers. All would entreat Donn to provide sufficient rain the coming summer for good crops, but to moderate the winds and hail so no shoots or mature grain were ruined.

Other Namesakes:

Ruby Firinne Photography-A studio based in San Diego, U.S.A
Deirdre Firinne-From the video game series Blazblue, Deirdre is a swordmaster who is revered by many as a hero

Possible Middle Names:

Firinne Aisling | Firinne Caitlin | Firinne Iona | Firinne Juliet | Firinne Lily | Firinne Margaret | Firinne Pearl

Possible Sibling Names:

Aisling | Eilis | Eseld | Iona | Liadan | Mhairi | Morwenna | Orla | Rozenn | Roisin| Saraid | Tesni
Ardal | Cothal | Dafydd | Daveth | Eamon | Fergus | Jowan | Lorcan | Niall | Rhodri | Tadg | Tavish

Overall there isn’t a lot of information on this name, but I’m sure you could make it your own.

4 comments on “Firinne

  1. waltzingmorethanmatilda
    November 22, 2012

    I love the meaning and the history of the name, but all I can hear is “fear in ya”.

  2. Pingback: Firinne | Name News |

  3. machtelt
    November 19, 2015

    In named my company Firinne Coaching (located in the Netherlands), it’s a strong en feminine name. I’m caching in and with nature, Firinne feels and sounds perfect for that.
    The right name for my company!

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