Celtic/Jewish Origins of surnames

Celtic Surnames

But as for the Mac, it is found joined to all sorts of foreign names, almost as easily, but, of course, not near so plentifully as to Celtic names.–Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Danish, Norman, and Welsh. To Hebrew names as in MacThomas, MacComas (the Th being lost), MacParlan, MacFarlane (for MacPartholáin, i.e., MacBartholom-aeus.) Very strange is the junction of the western mac with some decidedly eastern names, as in MacDavid (also MacDavitt, MacDevitt, and MacDaid), MacSimon (anglicised Fitzsimons, Simmons, and Simson). Even MacIsaac is found in Scotland and in the Isle of Man, in which latter place it is sometimes shortened and corrupted into ‘Kissack’; and, of course, we are all familiar with the Highland MacAdam. It is found with Greek names in MacAndrew (for MacAindreis), MacNicholas (MacNioclais), MacNicholl (MacNiocoil), MacGregor (MacGriogora), and others. With Latin names, as in MacManus (for MacMaghnusa from Magnus), MacConsidine, and Considine without the Mac (from Constantin-us), MacRealey, Magrealey, and Grealey (for MacRiaghla, from Riaghal, i.e., Regulus), and several others. These Latin, Greek, and Hebrew names–many of them Biblical–might have been borne either by Celts or foreigners; but as most of them go back to the first ages of Christianity in Ireland, they generally denote families of Celtic origin. Many families of Danish origin show this by their name, as the MacAuliffes (from MacAmhlaoibh, i.e., son of Amlaf or Aulaf), the MacHammonds and MacCammonds (from MacAmaind), the MacOtters and ‘Cotters (MacOtair) and others; yet, it must not be forgotten that after a while Amhlaoibh, Amand, Otar, &c, came to be used also by Celtic families, and therefore in some cases the only thing Danish about such people would be their names.

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