Medieval Naming Guides: Welsh, Cornish, and Breton

Welsh, Cornish, and Breton Names

Welsh Names
The First Thousand Years of British Names, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
A very detailed survey of names in Roman Britain and names in Wales from the Old Welsh Period.

Given names from the Llandaff Episcopal Acta, 1146-1286, by Constanza of Thamesreach.
A collection of masculine and feminine given names from Latinized charters. A mixture of native Welsh and imported English names.

Names in the charters of the Abbey of Ystrad Marchell, 1176-1283, by Constanza of Thamesreach.
A collection of names from 12th and 13th C Latin records, though many of the names have only been lightly Latinized. There are lists of given names and occupational, descriptive, locative, and patronymic bynames. Only one woman's name.

A Simple Guide to Constructing 13th Century Welsh Names, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
An easy-to-use guide to medieval Welsh naming customs, with lists of common names. If you want to build a name quickly, this is a great place to start.

The Dyffryn Clwyd Court Roll Database 1294-1422 User Guide,
Pages 34-53 contain a list of variant spellings and abbreviations which are found in the database. It's not complete, but is pretty extensive.

Welsh names from Newport charters, by Constanza of Thamesreach
A collection of mostly masculine names from two charters in Latin from Newport, Wales, from 1385 and 1623, as well as an addenda from 1427.

Snapshot of a Cantref: The Names and Naming Practices in a Mawddwy Court Roll of 1415-16, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
An analysis of names in a 15th century Latin document.

Welsh Names from the Proceedings of the Court at Castle Leon, 1497, by Aryanhwy merch Catmael
An analysis of 91 men's names and 5 women's names from two late 15th C Welsh documents written in Latin.

A Simple Guide to Constructing 16th Century Welsh Names (in English Contexts), by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
This article, like the preceding one, is a good introduction for the newcomer trying to build a name for a Welsh persona.

Late 16th Century Welsh Names, by Talan Gwynek
This article is a more detailed study of names from this period than the Simple Guide.

Women's Names in the First Half of 16th Century Wales , by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
A very detailed survey of the subject. The first page contains a very readable introduction, but the beginner should start with the Simple Guide, above.

Naming Practices in 16th Century Gloucestershire: Welsh Influences, by Mari Elsbeth nic Bryan
A section of her larger article on naming practices in Gloucestershire.

Some 16th & 17th Century Welsh Masculine Names, by Aryanhwy merch Catmael
Names of 129 high sheriffs and under-sheriffs of Glamorganshire in Wales between 1571 and 1624.

Welsh Place Names Index
A discussion of place names mentioned in a 13th century Welsh source. Organized as a dictionary by modern form of the name; the form that follows the headword is the 13th century spelling.

Period Welsh Models for SCA Households and the Nomenclature Thereof, by Heather Rose Jones
Discusses naming patterns for groups of people in pre-1600 Wales.

Sources cited in Morgan and Morgan's Welsh Surnames, by Tangwystyl verch Morgan Glasvryn
Expanded bibliographical information for sources used by T. J. and Prys Morgan in their Welsh Surnames.

Cornish Names
Cornish (and Other) Personal Names from the 10th Century Bodmin Manumissions, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
An in-depth analysis, originally published in Known World Heraldic Symposium Proceedings (Nordmark, 1999).

Breton Names
Early Medieval Breton Names, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
An analysis of Breton names recorded up to the 12th century.

Breton Patronyms and the British Heroic Age, by Gary D. German
This article consists of two parts; the first, a survey of modern Breton naming practices, is not useful for our purposes, but the seconD, is a rather useful overview of the semantics of compound given names in the era of the Redon Cartulary, and the parallels of these with compound given names in early Welsh. Thus, this article should be used for its dated name lists, and not for the introductory material.

Academy of Saint Gabriel reports 1936 and 2011
Contains some masculine and feminine given names from 9th-11th century records from Brittany. Many are of Breton origin, many are not.

Given Names from Brittany, 1384-1600, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
Mostly 16th century names, some of uncertain gender. Some are of Breton origin, most are not.

Brythonic Names
Names of Women of the Brythonic North in the 5-7th Centuries, by Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn
A discussion of the 18 feminine names that can be identified as occurring in this culture.


The Medieval Names Archive is published by the Academy of Saint Gabriel and Sara L. Uckelman. It was historically published by Joshua Mittleman.
© 1997-2013. Copyright on individual articles belongs to their authors.
http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/pceltic.shtml