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Nigel is a favorite baby name for boys. With its equal elements of Irish-Gaelic and Latin, this name feels relatable in every context. Nigel Pinchley is a character in the Family Guy series, and Nigel Thornberry was a main character in The Wild Thorberrys series. Keep reading to learn more about this name.

Meaning and Origin of the Name Nigel:

Nigel has two possible origins. Foremost, it is the short form of Nigellus. This name arose as the medieval Latin form of Niall (or Neil). Although etymologists continue to debate the ultimate source, many believe that Niall derives from the Old Gaelic word nia (meaning “hero”). Neil could also derive from the Old Irish word nél (meaning “cloud”) or the Old Celtic root *nītu- (meaning “passion,” “fury,” or “vehemence”). During the later medieval period, individuals also began to associate Nigel with the Latin word for “dark-haired,” “swarthy,” or “black”.

Symbolism of the Name Nigel:

Nigel originates as the short form of Nigellus. This name arose as the medieval Latin form of Niall (meaning “hero,” “champion,” or “cloud”). In Irish legend, the most famous bearer of the name was Níall Noígíallach (Niall of the Nine Hostages). According to the tale, Niall was one of five heirs of Eochaid Mugmedón who underwent a test to determine who would become the rightful ruler of Ireland. Niall was the only son wise enough to pass the tests, and his symbol became the sylvan well.

Nicknames for the Name Nigel:

Nigel is a cute and sophisticated name for a baby boy! There are some excellent options out there for Nigel nicknames, including:

  • Nile
  • Giles
  • Gel
  • Niles
  • Iggy
  • Ni
  • Nige
  • Gelly

Style of the Name Nigel:


Gender of the Name Nigel:

Nigel is a boy's name.

Pronunciation of the Name Nigel:


Number of Syllables in the Name Nigel:


Emotion Evoked From the Name Nigel:

The name Nigel evokes feelings of stamina and strength.

Alternative Spellings for the Name Nigel:

Popularity of the Name Nigel:

According to the Social Security Administration index, Nigel was the 1,713th most popular baby name for boys in 2021.

Great Middle Names for Nigel and Their Meanings:

  • Alphonso (ready for battle)
  • Aries (ram)
  • Bartholomew (son of the furrow)
  • Boris (snow leopard, wolf, fighter)
  • Brian (high, noble, hill)
  • Chester (camp, fortress)
  • Desmond (person from South Munster)
  • Edmond (wealthy protector)
  • Holt (woods, forest)
  • Lionel (little lion)
  • Osgood (gothic deity, divine creator)
  • Rupert (bright fame)
  • Ryan (little king)
  • Timothy (honoring God)

Famous People with the Name Nigel:

  • Nigel Ayers (multimedia artist)
  • Nigel Barker (model, photographer, and reality television personality)
  • Nigel Gregory Benn (boxer)
  • Nigel Howard Clough (footballer)
  • Nigel Richard Patton Dempster (columnist)
  • Nigel Alexander Dodds (politician)
  • Nigel Barnard Hawthorne (actor)
  • Nigel Ernest James Mansell (race car driver)
  • Nigel Colin McCrery (screenwriter)
  • Nigel David Short (chess champion)
  • Nigel Jerome Edwin Watson (guitarist)
  • Nigel Ah Wong (rugby player)
  • Nigel Pinchley (character in the Family Guy series)
  • Nigel Thornberry (character in The Wild Thorberrys series)
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