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From Greek eirēnē ‘peace’ it was borne in Greek mythology by a minor goddess who personified peace, and by a Byzantine empress (752–803). The name was taken up in the English-speaking world at the end of the 19th century, and became popular in the 20th, partly as a result of being used as the name of a character in John Galsworthy's The Forsyte Saga (1922). It was formerly pronounced in three syllables, as in Greek, but is now thoroughly naturalized as an English name and usually pronounced as two syllables.
253rd in the U.S.

Nicknames & variations

Quick facts

Hundreds of thousands
of people in the U.S have this name
280,372
to be exact
301,401
if you include dead people (since the government started keeping track)
New Mexico
has the most people named Irene per capita
1910
marked the height of its popularity
99.98%
0.02%
69%
55+
21%
30-54
5%
13-29
6%
0-12

Top state populations

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