Southern New England


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Traditional Irish Naming Patterns

Here is the traditional naming pattern which I have found repeated in several sources. The naming pattern was followed by the majority of parents. I've compared our families' names as far as we know them, and although they don't exactly follow the pattern, they are pretty close...

Sons' Names

First Son Named for paternal grandfather
Second Son Named for maternal grandfather
Third Son Named for father
Fourth Son Named for father's oldest brother
Fifth Son Named for mother's eldest brother
Sixth Son Named for father's second oldest brother

Daughters' Names

First Daughter Named after maternal grandmother
Second Daughter Named after paternal grandmother
Third Daughter Named after mother
Fourth Daughter Named after mother's oldest sister
Fifth Daughter Named after father's eldest sister
Sixth Daughter Named after mother's second oldest sister

Any additional children continue the pattern, following the order of father's and mother's brothers and sisters.
One other common practice was to name a child after a child who had died within the family.