Rowan is an Irish name with a history that dates back to the sixth century, though it didn't become common in the United States until the 2000s. While it's generally considered a name for baby boys, a celebrity baby born in 2003 helped it gain popularity as a name for baby girls too. It's also the name of a beloved British actor and a tree that was quite symbolic to the Celts.

Meaning of the name Rowan:

Irish/Scottish: Red-haired or little red one
Arabic: River in heaven
Scandanavian: Rowan tree

Origin of the name Rowan:

Rowan is the English version of the Irish Gaelic name Rúadhán, which means “red-haired” or “little red one.”

Symbolism of the name Rowan:

The rowan tree is beloved for its beauty, stamina and protective qualities. Its red berries attract birds, which the Celts felt was a positive omen.

Baby name Rowan

Style of the name Rowan:

Traditional, yet modern in the United States

Gender of the name Rowan:

Rowan is both a boy's and a girl's name, but it's more popular for boys in the United States.

Pronunciation of the name Rowan:


Number of syllables in the name Rowan:


Emotion evoked from the name Rowan:

Rowan evokes the image of a person who is authoritative and powerful.

Alternative spellings for the name Rowan:

Nicknames for the name Rowan:

  • Ro
  • Ronie
  • Rowie
  • Winnie

Popularity of the name Rowan:

Rowan first made the ranks among the top 1,000 names for baby boys in the United States in 1999. It's become more popular each year. As of 2020, it's ranked at number 113, according to the Social Security Administration.

Related names for the name Rowan:

Great middle names for Rowan and their meanings:

Famous people with the name Rowan:

  • Rowan Atkinson (actor)
  • Rowan Blanchard (actress)
  • Rowan Williams (Archbishop of Canterbury)
  • Sir William Rowan Hamilton (mathematician)
  • Rowan Alexander (soccer player)

Rowans in popular culture:

  • Rowan Whitethorn (character in the “Throne of Glass” book series)
  • Rowan Morrison (character in the film “The Wicker Man”)
  • Rowan North (character in the 2016 “Ghostbusters” movie)
  • Professor Rowan (character in several Pokemon video games)
  • Rowan Mayfair (character in the novel “The Witching Hour”)