There are very few heroes that capture the imagination like King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. These intrepid figures fought and lived bravely and thanks to folklore and legend survived Medieval times and still live on today in pop culture. One thing we noticed about these characters is that they have some truly iconic names. Most have a Welsh origin and offer a touch of whimsy even when they’re strong-sounding.
From Angnie to the Lady of the Lake, we rounded up our favorite names for girls from Arthurian legend. These lyrical and sturdy monikers all have a story behind them. Not only do they sound legendary, but these names have also been handed down for centuries. What names were fit for Camelot but still sound acceptable for babies today? Let us show you! Here are 25 spirited baby names inspired by beloved characters of Arthurian legend.
Angnie was Lady of the Beautiful Forest and wife of Moralde. Her daughter, Claudin, was saved by Arthur’s Sir Tandareis. The name is Welsh with Latin origins and means “angel.” If you’re looking for alternatives to Angela or Angie, consider this one.
Avalon is an island valhalla of Celtic myth and Arthurian legend where King Arthur was taken to recover from his wounds. We love this heavenly name for girls. The name has Celtic origins and means “island of apples.”
Branwyn or Branwen are both acceptable spellings here. In Welsh mythology, Branwen was the daughter of Llyr who was turned into a bird. Hence, the name means “blessed raven.” We’re very into it!
Clarine is the preferred French form of Clara, a name that means “bright.” Clarine was the mother of Lancelot. When he was just an enfant, a water fairy stole the child from her. He would return to his mother years later to reclaim his ancestral property in Genewis.
Clarissant’s story isn’t the best, but she sure had an exceptional name. A beautiful, fair-spoken maiden who was loved by Sir Guiromelant, and was Gawain’s servant. After learning of the family ties between Gaiwan and Clarissant, Guiromelant was angered as Gawain and he were enemies. Arthur helped resolve the conflict and the two lovers were allowed to marry. This name is another form of Clara and also means “bright.”
Crisea was the wife of King Lac and mother of Erec. She was a skilled sorceress, and she enchanted Erec in such a way that he could never be affected by magic. The name means “cross.”
In Arthurian legend, Elaine was a very popular name and belonged to many colorful characters. One is known as “Fair Maiden of Astolat.” Another, is Lancelot’s mother who became a nun. Yet another was the lady of the castle Gazevilte, considered one of the most beautiful women in Arthur’s realm. And most popular was the princess who fell in love with Sir Lancelot and became the mother of Sir Galahad, referred to as “Elaine the fair” and “Elaine the lovable.” The name means “light.”
Elsa comes from German Arthurian tradition and in it, Elsa was rescued by Percival a Knight of the Round Table who was pulled by swans on a boat. And, the Knight of the Swans legend was born from this story. Elsa, unlike most names from this list, is not Welsh. The name has German origins and means “pledged to God.”
Back in the Age of Chivalry, to call a woman “a second Enid” was the greatest of compliments, as she was a legendary romantic figure, revived in Tennyson‘s Idyll of the Kings. This Celtic goddess-name means “soul” or “life.” Enid sounds both vintage and like a new discovery. We love this name and would love to see it more outside Wales.
Ettarre was a beautiful and powerful maiden loved by Pelleas. He awarded her the crown after defeating sixty knights at a tournament. She called him “sir baby” and, because of his lowly birth, rebuked him. She broke Pelleas’ heart. Ettarre is so closely tied to the narrative, that has come to mean “heartless.” In later legends, she was referred to as Arcade, a Greek name that means “from Arcadia.”
In Welsh legend, you’ll find the character with the name, Gwenddydd. Another form of the name, Ganieda is a little easter on non-Welsh speakers. Ganieda was Merlin’s sister who joined her brother in the woods later in life and developed the gift of prophecy. From Welsh, the name means “white day.”
There are a couple of Guenloies in Arthurian legend, but one stands out. She fell in love with Yder after he stayed in her court. She then sent him away to prove himself. She regretted the decision and then tracked Yder down. The two were reunited and married. Guenloies is another form of Guinevere and it’s theorized that the character might be the same person as Arthur’s queen.
Guinevere was the name of the beautiful but ill-fated Queen of Camelot. The Welsh name means “white shadow” or “white wave.” She was Arthur’s queen but had an affair with his most trusted ally, Lancelot which indirectly caused the downfall of the kingdom. What a thrilling character!
Gwendolen was Merlin’s lover, for a time, until he turned her into a “hag” after criticizing his evil powers. Gawain later married her and, when he kissed her, she returned to her beautiful form. Gwendolen is a remarkably beautiful name. The name means “white ring” and has ties to an ancient pagan moon goddess.
Hellawes might be a stretch, but we find this name really fun to say. Hellawes the Sorceress was an enchantress who created the feared Chapel Perilous. Lancelot braved inside to retrieve a sword and there, Hellawes tried to seduce him. Lancelot refused her kiss and later found out it would have been his demise. Hellawes wanted to take Lancelot as a dead lover. This name means “blessed.”
The daughter of the great and evil warrior Iweret, Ilbis lived with her father in the castle Dodone in the wood called Beforet. She fell in love with Lancelot after seeing him in a vision, but was distressed when she discovered that Lancelot intended to fight Iweret. Despite his own love for Iblis, Lancelot joined in the battle and won. He and Iblis were then married and ruled happily together. You’ll find the name (although unrelated) in Arabic tradition as well. Ilbis is considered to mean “wife of Lancelot.”
Isolde was an Irish princess betrothed to King Mark of Cornwall. After accidentally drinking a love potion, she became the lover of his knight Tristan, which led to their tragic deaths. So, it’s romantic but also a touch tragic. We love this Welsh name that means “ice ruler.”
Lavina was the sister of Medea, the carnal queen of Crudele castle. Her other sisters included Agnena, Bresenda, and Pulizena. We think Lavina got the best of the lot! Lavina is an ancient Roman name that means “from Lavinium.”
Lore was the Lady of Cardigan and a vassal of Arthur. She was besieged by King Ris of Outre-Ombre, and her city was captured. In a wild series of events, she had a sword magically attached to her and she ventured to Arthur’s court to find a knight to undo the sword from her. Meriadeuc, a young knight, did the trick and the two eventually married and ruled Cardigan. Lore is another form of Laura a name that means “bay laurel.”
In Welsh, Lunet is a form of Luned or Eluned, a saint’s name that also appears in Arthurian legend as a servant of the Lady of the Fountain who rescues the knight Owain. The name means “idol” or “little moon.” This is a really cute choice and a great alternative to the steadily rising Luna.
Lotta was Isolde’s mother and the wife of King Anguish of Ireland. She was known for her amazing healing capabilities. Although the potion was not for Tristan and Isolde, Lotta was the one who concocted it. Lotta is a diminiuitive of Carlotta and means “free man.”
Lyanne was a talkative maiden at Arthur’s court, obsessed with the sight of her own reflection in a mirror. We love the name Lyanne. Although it’s transformed, the name can be traced back to Julianne, a Latin name that means “youthful.”
Lyones was the sovereigness of the Castle Perilous. She was besieged by Sir Ironside, the Red Knight of the Red Lands, but was saved by Gareth, whom she then married at the castle of Kynke Kenadonne. This name has French roots and means “lion.”
An enchantress or fairy, probably derived from the Welsh Modron and, ultimately, from the Celtic goddess Matrona, and she may have been influenced by an enchantress in Irish mythology called Morrigan. Morgana was King Arthur’s half-sister and famed sorceress. The name means “sea ring” or “sea born.”
Nineve is one of the names given to the Lady of the Lake (one of them). She’s famous for giving King Arthur his sword Excalibur, enchanting Merlin, and raising Lancelot after the death of his father. You’ll also see the alternative form of this name, Nimue often. The name has come to mean “Lady of the Lake.”
There you go! 25 enchanting names for baby girls inspired by the characters in Arthurian legend. We hope you’re inspired by these names and see some that could be possibilities for your daughter.
Andrew is a Chicago-based writer who enjoys finding the best of the internet, obsessively making lists, and cooking for friends. After studying Film and Art History, he developed a deep love for both topics. Celebrity news, pop culture, and stories that bring people together are his passions.
- 1 25. Angnie
- 2 24. Avalon
- 3 23. Branwyn
- 4 22. Clarine
- 5 21. Clarissant
- 6 20. Crisea
- 7 19. Elaine
- 8 18. Elsa
- 9 17. Enid
- 10 16. Ettarre
- 11 15. Ganieda
- 12 14. Guenloie
- 13 13. Guinevere
- 14 12. Gwendolen
- 15 11. Hellawes
- 16 10. Iblis
- 17 9. Isolde
- 18 8. Lavina
- 19 7. Lore
- 20 6. Lunet
- 21 5. Lotta
- 22 4. Lyanne
- 23 3. Lyones
- 24 2. Morgana
- 25 1. Nineve
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