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National Gavin Day – April 12, 2023

National Gavin Day is celebrated on April 12 each year. Although the name Gavin is of Scottish origin, it is also a male name across English, Irish, Welsh, Swiss, and French cultures. Common variations of the word are Gavyn, Gavon, Gaven, and McGavin. Recently, Gavin has surpassed Kevin in popularity for boy names. It is interchangeable as a first and last name, appearing as a first name 49% of the time and the last name 51%. An estimated 150,000 people in the U.S. share the name, Gavin.

History of National Gavin Day

‘Gavin’ is a Scottish male name meaning ‘God send’ or ‘white hawk.’ It’s the shortened form of ‘Gwalchgwyn’ or ‘Gawain.’ Sir Gawain, a popular character in twelfth-century Welsh, British and Scottish mythos and one of King Arthur’s legendary Knights of the Round Table, is the earliest known notable figure to carry this name. According to the poem “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,” Gawain was Arthur’s nephew and renowned as one of the greatest knights of Camelot. He was also a close confidant of Lancelot, another member of the famed Knights of the Round Table. Like many characters in medieval tales, Gawain epitomized the ideals of chivalry, courage, heroism, and honor.

In Sassari, Italy, Saint Gavinus is a celebrated figure. ‘Gavinus’ was a former Imperial Roman soldier around 304 A.D., at the height of the Diocletianic Persecution when the purge on Christianity in the Roman empire was at its most severe. As one of the ‘Martini Tunitarri’, Latin for ‘Martyrs of Torres,’ he refused to worship pagan gods and embraced Christianity. Gavinus was executed in the city of Porto Torres on the orders of Governor Barbarus. Another Saint Gavinus from the nearby town of Sardinia was a missionary priest who was martyred in 130 A.D. in the Christian persecutions under the reign of Hadrian.

American singer-songwriter Gavin DeGraw, known for his breakout song “I Don’t Want To Be” on his 2003 debut album “Chariot,” is one of the most famous Gavins. DeGraw’s song became the theme of “One Tree Hill,” a beloved early 2000s television show about basketball, family ties, and high school romance. “Chariot” attained platinum certification in the U.S. and Denmark, charting at number 56 on the U.S. Billboard 200.

National Gavin Day timeline

2003
The Musical Debut

Gavin DeGraw releases his first studio album, “Chariot.”

2007
The Gavin and Stacey Show

The British TV show “Gavin and Stacey” is televised on BBC Three.

2016
The Baseball Draft

The Los Angeles Dodgers pick Gavin Thomas Lux in the first round of the 2016 Major League Baseball draft.

2019
The Election of a Governor

Gavin Newsom becomes California’s 40th governor.

National Gavin Day FAQs

Is Gavin a popular name?

Gavin ranks among the top 150 popular names in the U.S.

Is it Gavin or Gaven?

‘Gaven’ is a spelling variation of the name Gavin.

How do you spell Gavin in Irish?

Gavin in Irish is ‘Gaibhin.’

National Gavin Day Activities

  1. Read “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”

    “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,” tells the epic tale of one of history’s most prolific heroes. This fourteenth-century publication is one of the best-known stories of Arthurian legend and chronicles the feats of Sir Gawain.

  2. Listen to Gavin DeGraw

    Start with DeGraw’s most famous song, “Chariot.” This should whet your appetite to listen to all his other songs.

  3. Learn about Saint Gabinus

    Saint Gabinus was the brother of Pope Caius. Beheaded for refusing to offer sacrifices to pagan gods, he was a victim of Emperor Hadrian’s persecution and a notable figure in Christianity.

5 Great Facts About Gavins

  1. The name comes to America

    The name ‘Gavin’ first appeared in the U.S. between 1840 and 1920.

  2. There is a state of Gavins

    The U.S. state with the highest number of Gavins is California, where 2,106 people share this name.

  3. The show that’s based on real people

    The popular TV show “Gavin and Stacey” is based on real people, like writer James Corden’s childhood friend Gavin, who was the inspiration for the sitcom’s love story.

  4. The Governor of California

    Before getting into politics, California Governor Gavin Newsom was an accomplished businessman, founding PlumpJack Group, which manages over 23 businesses such as hotels, wineries, and restaurants.

  5. Gavin DeGraw dropped out of college

    Musician Gavin DeGraw dropped out of the prestigious Ithaca College, where he was studying music on a scholarship.

Why We Love National Gavin Day

  1. Shaping history

    From saints and singers to actors and writers, Gavins have made, and are still making their mark in the world. One way or another, they have shaped history.

  2. Accomplished athletes

    Dozens of British, Australian, and Scottish swimmers, footballers, and rugby players share the name, Gavin. It seems they’re natural athletes too.

  3. Loyalty and steadfastness

    The name ‘Gavin’ means ‘white hawk’ and carries all the virtues associated with this bird of prey. Some virtues are loyalty, bravery, and steadfastness.

National Gavin Day dates

YearDateDay
2023April 12Wednesday
2024April 12Friday
2025April 12Saturday
2026April 12Sunday
2027April 12Monday

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