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Quinn Name Meaning

Updated
Learn about the name Quinn including the meaning, gender, origin, popularity, and more.

Quinn Overview

  • Meaning: Quinn is an Irish name that means “descendant of Conn.” It was used as a surname, coming from the Clann Cuain. Prominent families across Ireland adopted it in the counties of Ulster, Clare, Longford, and Mayo. Its meaning includes the words “leader” and “smart.” It also has been known to mean “as attractive as multiple people” and “essence.
  • Gender: Quinn is a true unisex name. It was originally a last name, then became popular for boys and girls.
  • Origin: It’s still debated whether the protestants or the Catholics originated the name, but Quinn was Anglicized from “Ó Coinn,” “McQuinn,” or “MAcQuinn.” It is believed that the name was derived from Niall Ó Cuinn. Ó Cuinn was a warrior who died in the Battle of Clontarf in 1014.
  • Pronunciation: Quinn is most commonly pronounced as “Kwinn.”
  • Popularity: By the late 19th century, “Quinn” was popular in Dublin, Tyrone, Antrim, and Roscommon. In Ireland, Quinn is a very popular name. In the United States, it ranked 85th for newborn girls and 440th for boys
  • Nicknames: Nell, Nelly, Q, Quinny, Tess, Tessa.
  • Variations: Gwen, Kwen, Quin, Quincey, Quincy, Quinella, Quinna, Quinne, Quinlan, Quinlen, Quintessa, Quinten, Quinton, Quynn.
  • Namesakes: Quinn Cook (American basketball player), Quinn Cummings (American actress).

What Does the Name Quinn Mean?

Quinn is an Irish name that means “descendant of Conn.” It was first used as a surname, coming from the Clann Cuain. Other prominent families across Ireland also used it in Ulster, Clare, Longford, and Mayo.

It’s still debated whether the name comes from Catholicism or Protestantism, but its meaning includes the traits “leader” and “smart.” It also has been known to mean “as attractive as multiple people” and “essence.”

What Is the Origin of the Name Quinn?

Quinn has become Anglicized over the years from “Ó Coinn” or “McQuinn” or the Scottish iteration, “MacQuinn.” Its exact source is unknown, but it is believed that the name was derived from Niall Ó Cuinn. Ó Cuinn was a warrior who died in the Battle of Clontarf in 1014 (1).

The families that took on this name were nobility, and spread widely across Ireland and Scotland, from Dunraven to Annaly, Longford, Raphoe, and Castlebar. By the late 19th Century, “Quinn” was popular in the cities of Dublin, Tyrone, Antrim, and Roscommon.

How Popular Is the Name Quinn?

In Ireland, Quinn is a popular name. It typically stays within the 20 most popular names, especially for last names, but for boys’ and especially girls’ first names as well.

In the United States, the name ranked 85th for newborn girls and 440th for boys (2).

How Do I Pronounce Quinn?

The name Quinn is most commonly pronounced as “KWINN.”

Is Quinn a Boy or Girl Name?

Quinn started as a boy’s name or as a last name but has since become a truly unisex name (3).

Variations of Quinn

Quinn is a popular name with Celtic ties that have spread from the Irish nations and cultures across the globe. Some popular variations of it include:

  • Gwen (Welsh)
  • Kwen (Celtic)
  • Quin (Irish)
  • Quincey (Irish)
  • Quincy (Irish)
  • Quinella (Latin)
  • Quinna (Irish)
  • Quinne (Irish)
  • Quinlan (Irish)
  • Quinlen (Irish)
  • Quintessa (Latin)
  • Quinten (Irish)
  • Quinton (Irish)
  • Quynn (Irish)

Nicknames for Quinn

While there are numerous variations, only a few nicknames exist in comparison, such as:

  • Nell
  • Nelly
  • Q
  • Quinny
  • Tess
  • Tessa

Similar Names to Quinn

There are also a handful of names similar to Quinn, some of which are Celtic while others are not.

These include:

Middle Names for Quinn

Quinn can often be used as a middle name itself, but some great pairings with it as a first name include:

Sibling Names for Quinn

Many names go great alongside Quinn for a sibling, whether boy or girl. Some of the most popular are:

For a brother:

For a sister:

Famous People Named Quinn

There are also many famous people named Quinn.

Some of the most prominent include (4):

  • Quinn Bradlee: American filmmaker and writer.
  • Quinn Cook: American basketball player.
  • Quinn Cummings: American actress and writer.
  • Quinn Martin: American producer.
  • Quinn Norton: American journalist.

Quinn in Popular Culture

Today, many Quinns are characters in pop culture as well.

You might recognize these fictional characters:

  • Quinn Fuller: Character from the soap opera “The Bold and the Beautiful.”
  • Quinn Fabray: Character from the TV show “Glee.”
  • Quinn Garvey: Character from “How I Met Your Mother.”
  • Quinn Morgendorffer: Character from the MTV show “Daria.”
  • Quinn Pensky: Character from the Nickelodeon television program “Zoey 101.”
  • Quinn Perkins: Character from the television series “Scandal.”
  • Quinn the Eskimo: Character from the song “The Mighty Quinn.”
  • Quinn, Demacia’s Wings: A character in the video game “League of Legends.”
  • Quinn: A character from the video game “Etrian Odyssey.”
  • Quinn the puffin: Character from the British TV show “3rd & Bird.”
  • Quinn: Character from the television show “Prison Break.”

Quinn FAQs

Here are some commonly asked questions about the name Quinn.

What Does Quinn Mean in the Bible?

Quinn is not strongly connected to the Bible, though it has become popular in Christian households. As a unisex name, its origins are Irish, and can also mean “queen.”

What Is the Quinn Family Motto?

The motto for the Gaelic family name Quinn is, “Quod Sursum Volo Videre.” That translates to “I wish to see things which are above.”

Is Quinn a Good Girl Name?

Quinn is a very good girl name. As we’ve covered, it’s one of the top-100 names for girls in the United States and has an impact. Quinn is often a shortened version of Quentin, but when it comes to girls, can stand on its own or be shortened.

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