Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Taliesin (tahl-YES-in / tahl-ee-ESS-in) is a seldom heard Welsh boy's name meaning "shining forehead, radiant brow." A 6th century Welsh bard with this name was mentioned in Alfred Lord Tennyson's Idylls of the King, the classic Arthurian romance. This Taliesin was a beloved and respected poet celebrated into the 12th century, and written about in other works such as Bran the Blessed. However, the name Taliesin is more well known in America as the name of architect Frank Lloyd Wright's homes located in Arizona and Wisconsin. The icing on the cake is that Taliesin was the son (sort of) of the goddess Ceridwen from Celtic mythology - she ate someone and he was reborn as the poet and wizard Taliesin.
Many have found TAHL-ess-in and tahl-EYE-ess-in to be acceptable pronunciations, as well as Tall, Tali, and Lee to be acceptable nicknames. In 2011 this name was given to just six boys, never more than ten since 1993. In 2013 it was only given to 5. In Wales, Taliesin has been ranking around #1480.