The Scottish Macs: Names that begin with Mac & Mc
The Scottish Macs Mac and Mc Family names of Scotland and the Scots-Irish
The Derivation and Origin of Names that Begin with Mac' and Mc' by James B. Johnston
Derivation and Origin of Scottish family names (Mac and Mc names). Genealogy & Family History, sources.
Scottish and Scots Irish Names
An early groundbreaking work on Scottish families, in particular those whose name began with Mac or Mc. Of course, many names dropped the Mac and Mc in modern times, but they can still trace the family back to the old Mac names in this book. It is the first and only time this book appears with the IGF surname index. Each name is analyzed in the following catagories as known :
2) Found today in
3) Root and Meaning
4) Place of origin and early instances.
It is a unique source in that it gives early individuals of the name, some back to the 1200s, others back to the 1600s, etc.. This book will teach you about Scottish names, and these same names in Northern Ireland today. It is not too difficult to understand. The author, James B. Johnston also wrote 'Place Names of Scotland'; 'Place-Names of England and Wales'; and 'Place Names of Stirlingshire', and is well versed in this subject.
A Word From the Author
The Following is from the introduction to this work: "A great many of our Scottish Macs are first recorded in Ireland, where early records are far more abundant; and, through lack of evidence it is often difficult to know whether a particular Mac-name is really Scots at all, or only a late importation from Erin's Isle. Communications between Ulster and Argyle or Galloway was both early and continuous. Sometimes the forms have been slightly different, and that helps. E.G., the usual Scots form is M'Diarmid, whilst, if the name be Irish, it is usually M'Dermott. Many a name which, to an ordinary ear, would sound pure Irish, turns up fairly early in Galloway or Ayr, which makes one catious about dogmatizing: see, e.g., M'Ilvaney or M'Kenna. The form of the surname is, in any case, very ancient in Scotland. Already in the 11th century we have such well-authenticated cases as Macbeth or Macduff. Entries like 'Pette (croft of) mac Garnait, in the Book of Deer, will be of about the same age. "
The author gives us bits of information on many names, including items like M'Askill (McGaskill, MacAskil etc..) founded in the early 1300's as Makasky and Makaskel, in the Isle of Man; MacBeth, M'bay and M'Bey where variants spellings leave the old 'th' sound out entirely, from an Irish chief who died in 1041; McCall or MacCall is given as founded in the 13th century with subsequent examples; McCann or MacCann is founded in 1260 at Girvan; MacClure or McClure (M'Clure) is traced back to 1611, coming from Mac gille uidhir, or mac gill Leabhair. There are several hundred names chosen to be included here, with the Mac or Mc prefix. Of course, today the Mac or Mc may have been dropped, which means many will have to add the Mac or Mc to their name in order to find its history. Names like Michael, Martin, Manns, Murray, Moran, Ritchie, Roberts, and Swan, are but a few examples of names from which the Mac or Mc prefix has been dropped. This is an informative work, and the introduction is well worth reading, giving all a better idea from whence our names have come.
The author, James B. Johnston, M.A., B.D., is also the author of "Place Names of Scotland", "Place Names of England and Wales", and Place-Names of Stirlingshire"
The Final Word
Approx. 60 p. in all, full size 8 1/2 x 11, heavier parchement cover, spiral bound, new index, sources, new edition. Records are reproduced here exactly as they appear in the original documents in the IGF Library (enlarged for easy reading), and the pages do show the wear of time. A must for any collection that includes this area of study. Several hundred names are covered, plus older spellings used earlier in history. Most of the study covers names in Scotland, but Ireland is noted in several instances. The family history given here is not large for a single name - but it is very specific and historical when notations are given. Furthermore, it lends to our knowledge of the origin of all Gaelic, Scots and Irish names.
Search Family Name Index