The names listed here occur in the mythologies and legends of Wales.

AERON (2)   f,m   Welsh Mythology
Welsh form of AGRONA. In Welsh mythology Aeron was often portrayed as a masculine deity.

ARANRHOD   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Possibly means "huge wheel" or "round wheel" in Welsh. In Welsh myth Aranrhod was the mother of the twin brothers Dylan and Lleu Llaw Gyffes. In earlier myths she was a goddess of the moon.

ARIANRHOD   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Variant of ARANRHOD, influenced by the Welsh word arian "silver".

ARTHUR   m   English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: AR-thur
The meaning of this name is unknown. It could be derived from British art "bear" combined with viros "man", or it could be related to Irish art "stone". Alternatively it could be related to an obscure Roman family name Artorius. Arthur is the name of the central character in Arthurian legend, a 6th-century king of the Britons who presided over the knights of the Round Table. He may or may not have been an actual person.

BEDIVERE   m   Welsh Mythology
Anglicized form of the Welsh name Bedwyr, which is of unknown meaning. In Arthurian legends Bedivere was one of the knights of the Round Table, one of the original companions of King Arthur. He was the one who threw Excalibur into the lake after the king died.

BEDWYR   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Welsh form of BEDIVERE

BELI   m   Welsh Mythology
Welsh cognate of Bel (see BELENUS).

BLODEUWEDD   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Means "face of flowers" in Welsh. In the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth, she is the wife of Lleu Llaw Gyffes changed into an owl for her infidelity.

BRAN (2)   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: BRAN
Means "raven" in Welsh. In Welsh legend Bran the Blessed (called also Bendigeid Vran) was the son of the god Llyr. Later Welsh legends describe him as a king of Britain who was killed attacking Ireland.

BRANWEN   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: BRAN-wen
Means "beautiful raven" from Welsh bran "raven" and gwen "fair, white, blessed". In the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth, she is the sister of the British king Bran and the wife of the Irish king Matholwch.

CERIDWEN   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: ke-RID-wen
Means "blessed poetry" from Welsh cerdd "poetry" and gwen "white, fair, blessed". This is the name of a Celtic goddess of poetry.

CULHWCH   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Means "hiding place of the pig" in Welsh. In Welsh legend he was the lover of Olwen the daughter of the giant Yspaddaden. Before the giant would allow Culhwch to marry his daughter, he insisted that Culhwch complete a series of extremely difficult tasks. Culhwch managed to complete them, and he returned to marry Olwen and kill the giant. This tale appears in the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth.

DYLAN   m   Welsh, English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: DUL-an (Welsh), DIL-un (English)
Means "sea" in Welsh. In Welsh mythology he was a god of the sea, the son Aranrhod. He was accidentally slain by his uncle Govannon. The Welsh poet Dylan Thomas and the musician Bob Dylan are famous bearers of this name.

ENID   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Derived from Welsh enaid meaning "soul" or "life". She was the wife of Geraint in Arthurian legend.

GALAHAD   m   Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: GAL-a-had
Meaning unknown. In Arthurian legend Sir Galahad was the son of Lancelot and Elaine. He was the most pure of the knights of the Round Table, and he was the only one to succeed in finding the Holy Grail.

GAWAIN   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology, English
Pronounced: ga-WAYN
Possibly from the Welsh name Gwalchgwyn which meant "white hawk". Sir Gawain was a knight of the Round Table in Arthurian legends. The 14th-century romantic poem 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight' tells how Gawain beheaded the Green Knight in single combat.

GERAINT   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: GE-rient (Welsh), je-RAYNT (English)
Meaning unknown, possibly a Welsh form of GERONTIUS. In Arthurian legend he was one of the knights of the Round Table. After he wrongly accused his wife Enid of infidelity she regained his love by being submissive.

GORONWY   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Meaning unknown. In the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth, he was the lover of Blodeuwedd. He attempted to murder her husband Lleu Llaw Gyffes but was himself killed.

GOVANNON   m   Welsh Mythology
Welsh cognate of GOIBNIU

GUINEVERE   f   English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: GWIN-e-veer
Old French form of the Welsh name Gwenhwyfar, which is composed of the elements gwen meaning "fair, white" and hwyfar meaning "smooth". In Arthurian legend she is the beautiful wife of King Arthur. Her betrayal of her husband with Mordred prompted the battle of Camlann, which led to the deaths of both Mordred and Arthur. Later versions of the legends tell of her adulterous affair with Sir Lancelot.

KAY (2)   m   Welsh Mythology
Possibly a Welsh form of GAIUS. Sir Kay was one of the knights of the Round Table in Arthurian legend.

LANCELOT   m   English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: LAN-se-lawt
Meaning unknown, possibly an Old French pet form of Lanzo (see LANCE). In Arthurian legend Lancelot was the bravest of the knights of the Round Table. He became the lover of Arthur's wife Guinevere.

LLEU   m   Welsh Mythology
Welsh cognate of LUGH. In the Mabinogion, a collection of tales from Welsh myth, Lleu Llaw Gyffes is the son of Aranrhod. He is raised by his uncle Gwydion, who helps him overcome the curses that his mother placed upon him.

LLYR   m   Welsh Mythology
Means "the sea" in Welsh. This was the name of the Welsh god of the sea.

MABON   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Derived from Welsh mab meaning "son". This was the name of an Old Celtic god.

MERLIN   m   Welsh Mythology, English
Pronounced: MUR-lin
Form of the Welsh name Myrddin (meaning "sea fortress") used by Geoffrey of Monmouth in his 12th-century Arthurian tales. He likely chose the form Merlinus over Merdinus in order to prevent associations with French merde "excrement". In the earliest legends Myrddin is a prophetic madman who lives in the Caledonian Forest, but in later tales Merlin is a wizard, the sorcerer and counselor for King Arthur.

MYRDDIN   m   Welsh Mythology
Original Welsh form of MERLIN

NUDD   m   Welsh Mythology
Welsh cognate of NUADA

OWAIN   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: O-wien
There are several theories on the origins of this name: it could be a Welsh form of EUGENE; it could be derived from either of the Welsh elements oen "lamb" or eoghunn "youth"; or it could be related to Esos, the name of a Celtic god. In Arthurian legend Owain, also called Yvain, was one of the knights of the Round Table, the son of King Urien and the slayer of the knight of the fountain.

PERCIVAL   m   English, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: PUR-si-val
Old French form of Peredur, a Welsh name of unknown meaning. The spelling was altered under the influence of Old French percer val "to pierce the valley". In Arthurian legend Percival was a chivalrous knight who was given a glimpse of the Holy Grail.

RHIANNON   f   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Pronounced: hri-AN-awn (Welsh), ree-AN-un (English), REE-an-un (English)
Derived from Old Celtic Rigantona meaning "great queen". In Welsh mythology Rhiannon was the goddess of fertility and the moon. This name is also borne by a princess in Welsh legends, the wife of Pwyll.

URIEN   m   Welsh, Welsh Mythology
Means "privileged birth" from Celtic orbo "privileged" and gen "birth".

YVAIN   m   Welsh Mythology
Old variant of OWAIN