Over the last couple of decades, pirates have surged in popularity thanks, in no small part, to the Pirates of the Caribbean film franchise. Swashbucklers are simply all the rage, but this isn’t a new thing. The film franchise is based on a Disney ride which itself is based on a 1950 movie, Treasure Island which actually comes from a book by Robert Louis Stevenson written way back in 1883. So, we have a long history of pirate fascination.
Newer entries like the soapy Black Sails TV series are continuing to fuel the craze that shows no sign of slowing. When puritans came to the colonies, which would become the USA and various islands, popular folk songs about figures such as Blackbeard were a secret hit among the settlers. These eerie songs’ lyrics were changed over time to be more chaste and many can now be found in the hymnals found in most protestant churches. One of the most popular examples is the hymn “God is Found” which was only transformed into a sacred song after lyrics about Captain Robert Kidd II were rewritten. Our love of vagabonds has motivated us to sift through storied names to present you with baby names for boys inspired by pirates. Here are our favorite 25 baby names for boys inspired by pirates and all things nautical in nature. Argh! Harty-har-har-har-har!
Looking to the stars for direction is what it’s all about for pirates. The name Alistair is a gentle nod to that practice. The name can be spelled Alastair or the Scots prefer Alasdair. It’s a Gaelic form of the name Alexander that wasn’t heard outside of Scotland or Ireland until the 20th century. The name has a particularly appropriate meaning for this list: “defender of men.”
Aram is a very cool sounding name that would make for a welcome alternative to the ubiquitous, Aaron. Aram has Armenian origins and can be found in the Quran and Bible as a place name, Aramea, or as a son of Shem and grandson of Noah. Aram means “high, elevated.”
Why, yes, we did think of the cute crab from The Little Mermaid when we chose this name. Bastian is a diminutive of Sebastian, a Latin name from Greek that means “man from Sebastia.” It’s a storied city not far from the Mediterranean Sea. The name is currently enjoying favor in northern Europe and South America. In Chile, it was a top 20 name last year.
Brahiem is an English name and alternative form of Braham which means “flood plain.” This name has the right sound and due to its meaning we thought it most appropriate for this list. If you’re looking for an alternative to Graham, this is the ticket.
Cael is the name of the angel of the zodiac sign of Cancer and also of a warrior of Irish mythology. As astrology was big with sailors, Cael could be a fitting choice. This charming name has Gaelic origins and means “slender.”
Caspian is a name that first made the top 1000 list in 2017. The name was chosen for a prince in The Chronicles of Narnia and has a very storybook feel to it. The name, of course, refers to the Caspian Sea a large body of water situated between Europe and Asia.
All hands on deck! Yes, the sound of this name inspired us to choose it for this list. Declan is a strong Irish name that refers to a saint and means “man of prayer.” Musician, Elvis Costello was born with it as a given name. If you have Welsh or Irish heritage, this would be a great choice because St. Declan was a Welsh missionary who traveled to Ireland.
Elias is a Hebrew name and Greek form of Elijah which means “Yahweh is God.” The name has been on the top charts since the 19th century when records began and it’s more popular today than ever before in the US. Elias sounds both old and alternatively fresh which is why we love it for little pirate boys.
Fabian is an ancient Latin clan name that means “bean grower.” Fabian is particularly popular in Italy and Spanish-speaking communities. This name certainly sounds romantic and would make for an excellent choice! It’s been on an upward climb since the 1960s and is currently a top 500 name for boys.
Finnian has a slippery, lyrical quality to it. This Irish name belonged to an important saint and you’ll also found it spelled Finian. However you spell it, the name still sounds like a sea shanty. Finnian means “fair.”
Graeme Park is a 42-acre historic park, featuring the Keith House, the only surviving residence of a Colonial Pennsylvania Governor. Governor William Keith, the first owner of Graeme Park, helped to rid the port of Philadelphia from the scourge of Blackbeard the Pirate. We love the Scottish name Graeme which means “gravelly homestead.”
The novel Toilers of the Sea by Victor Hugo involves a shipwreck off the cost of Guernsey. The main character, Gilliat, is tasked with retrieving the ship’s steam engine and there’s a battle with an octopus. Hugo is the Latinized form of Hugh and means “mind.”
Ivan de Veenboer was a Dutch pirate during the Eighty Years’ War. Ivan is a decidedly Russian name that might sound a little heavy for some parents, but many have adopted the name for their babies in recent years. It is the Russian answer to the name, John and means the same: “God is gracious.”
Kasper is a form of the name Casper or Jasper. The name has Persian origins and means “bringer of treasure.” Although the treasure here is from one of the three wise men who visited baby Jesus, we couldn’t pass up a name with treasure in the meaning.
Lorcan is a storied Irish name that sounds spot-on for this list and has an appropriate meaning: “little fierce one.” If you’re after an alternative to Liam or Connor, this would be the perfect one. This name isn’t nearly as popular in the US as it is in Ireland, but it’s on the upward climb here. We expect it to show up in the top 1000 in coming years.
Another old Irish name, Ossian is pronounced similarly to ocean as UH-sheen which we figured made it a great choice for a little pirate. Ossian might sound like the sea but it means “little deer,” which, is darling. This name comes with the added bonus of nicknames Ozzie or Oz.
Creepypasta is a thing we don’t fully understand, but we do know a character named Pirate Percy is a part of that world. The name also sounds like an old-world choice for a little chap. Percy is a French surname from the place name, Perci-en-Auge.
Sea of Thieves is a popular pirate and privateer game that features a character named Ramsay Singh who’s known as the Pirate Lord. Ramsay is a handsome English name that means “low-lying land.”
The Italian water-name Rivo means “stream.” This adventurous-sounding name would be the Italian equivalent of naming your child River. We love how lively this name feels. Thanks to other, more popular names Rico and Ravi, this name would not seem out of place at all.
We chose the name Savion based purely on its sound. It certainly sounds like a name for a classic pirate tale. Savion is a form of Xavier and has origins in Basque or Arabic. The name means “new house” or “bright.” The name had a moment in the US making the top 1000 in the late nineties before falling off the charts. Bring it back!
A stone’s throw away from Savion, Senan is another option for you to consider. This Irish name belonged to a Saint who fought off monsters to build religious settlements. The name is also spelled, Seanen and is considered a pet form of Sean. The name means “old and wise.”
Tig is an animal name that refers to a tiger. Tigers are talented hunters and thus help give this very soft name a bit of an edge. Captain Edward Teague inspired this choice and you’ll find him in The Pirates of the Caribbean.
Timo is a name primarily used in Finnish, Estonian, Dutch, and German societies. It’s a variation of Timothy which means “honoring God. The name is inspired by Timothy Hawk a pirate who became tied up with the infamous Jack Sparrow,
During the Golden Age of Piracy, you’d find Captain Charles Vane exploiting the Bahamas. Vane is an English name that means “banner.” If it sounds too much like vanity to you, consider the Scottish name, Thane. Thane refers to nobility.
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Most pirates ventured West from their country of origin and, of course, this name refers to that direction. The search for treasure or plunder often times meant a western voyage to the tropics in the Golden Age of Pirates. West could be short for Weston or Wesley.
There you go! 25 baby names for boys inspired by buccaneers, privateers, and pirates. These names are a complete blast and a subtle way to inject some whimsy into a child’s name.
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. Alistair
- 2 24. Aram
- 3 23. Bastian
- 4 22. Brahiem
- 5 21. Cael
- 6 20. Caspian
- 7 19. Declan
- 8 18. Elias
- 9 17. Fabian
- 10 16. Finnian
- 11 15. Graeme
- 12 14. Hugo
- 13 13. Ivan
- 14 12. Kasper
- 15 11. Lorcan
- 16 10. Ossian
- 17 9. Percy
- 18 8. Ramsay
- 19 7. Rivo
- 20 6. Savion
- 21 5. Senan
- 22 4. Tig
- 23 3. Timo
- 24 2. Vane
- 25 1. West
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