Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Tara

Tara is an Irish female name, derived from a place name in the Kingdom of Meath. Tara was the sacred location on a hill near Dublin where the ancient High Kings of Ireland dwelled centuries before Christ. Tara is the anglicized form of the Gaelic word “teamhair” (towr) meaning “hill” but has come to imply more of an “elevated place” given the significance of the location among the ancient Irish kings. Essentially Tara was the hub of royal and religious power in all of Ireland. It’s no surprise then that Margaret Mitchell used the name “Tara” for the plantation owned by the illustrious O’Hara family in “Gone with the Wind”. In fact, it was the novel and subsequent film which served to popularize the name Tara among baby girls starting in the early 1940s in America. Aside from the obvious Irish connection, Tara is also a word in Sanskrit meaning “star” (a Hindu goddess) as well as a female Buddha deity. Tara is still quite popular in Ireland and Northern Ireland, but it also does well in the Slavic nations of Croatia and Slovenia. We’re not sure if that’s the Irish influence or the Hindu one, though.

All About the Baby Name – Tara

Personality

OF THE GIRL NAME TARA

The number Four personality is marked by stability and discipline. This is the personality that follows the rules and is conservative by nature.  They have an earth-bound energy that prefers to build things methodically on top of firm foundations; they don't cut corners. Fours take their time and don't like to be hurried. But the outcome of their endeavors is likely to result in some strong and useful structure, which makes them great engineers and inventors. Fours are anything but frivolous or controversial. This is a trustworthy, straight-forward personality that embodies dedication and organization. They are the backbone and anchor in their relationships, careers and communities. They are tidy, punctual, and full of integrity. Hard-work comes naturally to a Four and they are immensely reliable. This is the personality you can always count on.

Popularity

OF THE GIRL NAME TARA

Tara first appeared on the American female naming charts in 1949 and she quickly took hold. Within a short time frame (about 20 years) Tara achieved a Top 100 position on the charts in 1970. She parked herself on that list for another 20 years (1970-1990). Tara reached her peak popularity in 1977 when she became the 35th most commonly used baby girl’s name in the country. Not too shabby for a new entrant. Despite Tara’s prehistoric physical existence in Ireland, the name remains quite contemporary and modern. Although it appears her fashionable days are now over. Tara is no longer on the American radar and since the 21st century, she’s been dropping like rocks on the charts. Like Erin, Kelly or Shannon, Tara is a strong, unpretentious and straightforward Irish lass. Today American patents are choosing fancy anglicized versions of Irish girl names like Katelyn (Caitlin), Keira (Ciara) and Briana over Bridget and Tara. But Tara will always hold an “elevated place” in our Irish hearts.

Quick Facts

ON TARA

GENDER:

Girl

ORIGIN:

Celtic

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

912

PRONUNCIATION:

TEAR-ah; TAR-ah

SIMPLE MEANING:

Elevated place

Characteristics

OF TARA

Dependable

Solid

Practical

Hard-working

Industrious

Studious

Conservative

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Tara

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME TARA

Tara is the O’Haras’ Georgia plantation in Margaret Mitchell’s 1936 best-seller, Gone with the Wind. Scarlett’s father, Gerald O’Hara named it after the Hill of Tara, land of the ancient Irish kings of lore. During the course of the story, Tara goes from a proud and stately Southern mansion to a beaten, plundered and burned-out shell of itself, before being restored to its former glory. Indeed, the restoration brings Tara to an even more magnificent level than that at which she started. In a way, Tara mirrors the fortunes of Scarlett herself, who, though hungry and exhausted, refuses to give up and manages to regain and even surpass her former stature. Tara remains throughout a symbol of that which is cherished and worth fighting for. When Rhett Butler leaves Scarlett, it is Tara to which she returns, for succor and comfort, and we know it will be there for her. As a location name, it is lovely, and just as much so as a personal name – Tara – it seems to lilt off the tongue like the ancient language that inspired it.

Popular Songs

ON TARA

Tara Reid
a song by Rich Cronin

The Harp That Once Through Tara's Halls
Harvey Reid

Tara
a song by Roxy Music

Choking Tara
a song by Guided By Voices

Famous People

NAMED TARA

Tara Lipinski (figure skater)
Tara Reid (actress)
Tara Conner (former Miss USA)
Tara Patrick (AKA Carmen Electra, TV personality)

Children of Famous People

NAMED TARA

We cannot find any children of famous people with the first name Tara

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME TARA

We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Tara