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Donovan is an Irish baby boy’s name that means “dark”. Like many Irish classics, Donovan is an Anglicized name. In this case, Donovan derives from Donndubán. Donovan has been a classic name since at least 1900, but in a rare twist, it has steadily increased in popularity since the beginning of the 20th century and only peaked in 2003.

Meaning of the name Donovan:

Irish: dark

Origin of the name Donovan:

Donovan is a baby boy’s name of Irish origin that means “dark”. Donovan is the Anglicized form of the name Donndubán. It is also derived from the Irish surname Ó Donndubháin.

Symbolism of the name Donovan:

Donovan means “dark” and most likely referred to a person who had dark hair or eyes. In a country that has high concentrations of red-haired and blonde people with light-colored eyes, someone of a darker coloration was noteworthy.

Style of the name Donovan:


Gender of the name Donovan:

Donovan is a boy's name.

Pronunciation of the name Donovan:


Number of syllables in the name Donovan:


Emotion evoked from the name Donovan:

Donovan evokes feelings of practicality and intelligence.

Alternative spellings for the name Donovan:

Danavan, Donavan, Donovahn, Donoven, Donevahn

Nicknames for the name Donovan:

Popularity of the name Donovan:

According to the Social Security Administration, Donovan is a popular baby boy’s name. Donovan has been in the top 1000 baby names since 1900. It peaked in 2003 at #176.

Related names for the name Donovan:

Great middle names for the name Donovan and their meanings:

  • Oscar (God spear, deer-lover, champion warrior)
  • Jasper (bringer of treasure)
  • Silas (wood, forest)
  • Asher (fortunate, blessed, happy one)
  • Milo (soldier, merciful)
  • Emmett (universal)
  • Wyatt (brave in war)
  • Luke (man from Lucania)

Famous people with the name Donovan:

  • Donovan Philips Leitch (Scottish singer-songwriter)
  • Donovan Warren (American football player)
  • Donovan Bailey (Canadian Olympic sprinter)
  • Donovan Patton (American actor)
  • Donovan Jamal McNabb (American NFL football player)

Donovan in popular culture:

  • Donovan (literature, “The Puzzle Ring” by Kate Forsyth)
  • Donovan (television, “American Horror Story”)
  • Donovan (television, “Berserk”)
  • Mike Donovan (literature, writings by Isaac Asimov)
  • Matt Donovan (television, “The Vampire Diaries”)