The name is an anglicization of the Gaelic name Mebh and is believed to be a cognate of the word for the alcoholic beverage, mead.
In Irish mythology, the name was borne by the queen of Connacht, a fierce sovereign who went to war with the county of Ulster over a prized bull as told in the Irish epic The Cattle Raid of Cooley, one of the most important works of literature in early Ireland.
Currently, Maeve is the 535th most popular female name in the United States (2010). She has only recently fallen out of Ireland’s top 100, but as late as 2009, she was the 87th most popular female name.
Other forms of the name include: