Gender: Masculine
Origin: Welsh
Eng (DIL-en); WEL (DULL-en).

The name’s origin is up in the air. Some sources believe that it is composed of the Welsh elements dy meaning “great” and llanw meaning “tide; sea; flow,” while others contend that it is made up of the proto-Celtic elements *di meaning “away” and llanw (same as above).

It is also suggested that the name may be derived from the Welsh word dylanw meaning “influence.”

The name was borne in Welsh mythology by the god of the sea. He was the son of Aranrhod and was accidently slain by his uncle Gavannon. When he died, it was said that the waves of the sea wept.

It also was borne by Welsh poet Dylan Thomas (1914-53). The name became extremely popular outside of Wales around the 1960s.

Currently, Dylan ranked in as the 31st most popular male name in the United States. The highest he ranked was in 2004 at # 19.

His rankings in other countries are as follows:

  • # 28 (Australia, 2007)
  • # 53 (Belgium, 2006)
  • # 25 (Canada, B.C., 2008)
  • # 71 (Chile, 2006)
  • # 17 (England/Wales, 2008)
  • # 46 (France, 2006)
  • # 11 (Ireland, 2007)
  • # 27 (the Netherlands, 2008)
  • # 12 (Scotland, 2008)