B names, Female, Kin/Family, Male, Nature, Proto-Indo-European, Surname names, Unisex, Virtues/Attributes, Word names

Briar

Briar refers to a prickly plant or brush with thorns such as sweetbriar and greenbriar. The origin of the word comes from Old English brǣr meaning “briar, bramble” which may be derived from PIE *wert- (to twist, turn). Briar also refers to a pipe for smoking, made from the roots of that shrub. The origin of that word comes from French bruyère meaning “heather” or “heath, moor” derived from Gallo-Latin brucaria from Proto-Celtic *wroikos (heather) which may also be derived from PIE *wert- (to twist, turn).

Briar is also an English surname, a locational name for someone who lived near briars, or perhaps it derived as a nickname for someone who had a prickly personality. Briar could also be a shortened form of McBriar, an anglicized form of Gaelic Mac Bràthar meaning “son of the friar”; bràthar is the Irish word for brother.

Origin: Proto-Indo-European

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Variants:

  • Brier (English)

 

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