A Genealogical History of the Milesian Families of Ireland
A Genealogical History of the
compiled and edited by B.W. DeCourcy, with added materials.
Irish Septs, Family Mottoes, chiefs, territorial holdings, pedigrees, dates of arrival
Ancient name in Gaelic, Founder, Meaning of Name, Title of Chief, counties of settlement
Early Work on Irish Families
This book, first published in the 19th century, is a classic. It was one of the first popular genealogy books to appear in its time. This is the I.G.F. edition, from 2002. Following is the introduction to the book, written by Michael C. O'Laughlin, along with the table of contents.
" The original work by DeCourcy, The Genealogical History of the Milesian Families of Ireland, stands as one of the few works of its kind produced in the 19th century. No other work of the era brought forth more information in such a concise and easily understood format (even when in error). The massive works of O'Hart such as the Landed Gentry, are of the same era, but do not allow the same overview. The latter were bulky and expensive by comparison, and sometimes in error as well!
The classic 20th century work of the Rev. Patrick Woulfe, Irish Names and Surnames appears some 40 years after the appearance of Milesian Families. The work of MacLysaght came even decades later. There is a great debt owed to the earlier works upon which the modern works are based. This book, Milesian Families, doubtlessly woke many an Irishman to exploration of family history and legend, an endeavor continued to this day. It also provides us with a way to correct errors.
A groundbreaking work researched one-hundred and twenty years ago will have need of review and updates. The knowledge and use of the gaelic language has changed. The meanings and spelling groupings attributed to many of the Irish names given here are incorrect in the light of current knowledge and translation skills. The spellings used for the old Irish here, are notably different from what you will read most often today.
Common sense needs to prevail as well. If a name is listed as arriving in 1620, that does not mean it arrived in Ireland only in 1620. Immigration has been a constant, and families have arrived continuously from the time of Strongbow to the present day. It likely means the author had a reason to give 1620 as a date for at least one family of the name.
As with any work of this type, further documentation is needed to prove any individual family history. There are possible leads here for you regarding origins and dates. The more knowledgeable the reader, the more understandable this book becomes.
What can be said for the ancient legends and oldest pedigrees stretching beyond our imagination ? They are laid down in this book in short order, and your judgment is required. The closer we come to the 19th century, the more sure the facts will be. Make no mistake about it however, this is a noteworthy and valuable work, if only to double check our current theories."
Chapter I -
Introduction - On Surnames.
Authorities for genealogies,
Ancient Laws, etc.
Pedigree and adventures of Milesius and his followers,
The Conquest of Ireland by the Milesians.
-Divisions of the conquered country, and the death of Heber.
Regulations of the antient Milesians. -
Antient names of Ireland.-
Heremon, 1st absolute Monarch of the whole island. -
The most noted Kings of Pagan Ireland.-- Derghtine.
Descendants of Heber. - Dairine, those of Ith. -
Usurpation of Munster by the Earnochs. -
Usurpation ended by Modha Nuagadh. -Dal Fiatachs - Con Kead Caha. -
Nial Noy Giollach. -Dathy.
Story of the Norman Influx.
Names and descent of many Strongbowians.
Plan of the Monument explained, and manner of consulting the history.
Description of the powers, etc.. of letters in the Irish Alphabet.
Maritime and Inland Counties in Ireland.
Clans and Septs in Ireland
For each Irish clan, the names of the families within the clan are given,
with details of the families, including:
Name (i.e. "McCarey")
The Founders of the Family
Meaning of Name (i.e."Wandering")
Title of Chief ( i.e."Lord of Carbry")
The Counties in which they held possession
The ancient pedigree leading to the founder of the sept or clan is given as well. Below are some of the old Irish septs so included:
Clanna Rory and its families .... Hy Nial and its families .... Hy Brune... Kinel Daire Barrach ... Dal Cais ... Kianachta ....
Hy Fiachra ... Eoganacht .... Hy Many...
Dairine or Coreolugadh (Race of Ith)... Hy Fiacha ...
Dal Fiatachs ... Deisi .... Hy Tuirtre, Branch of Hy Many....
Kinel Dubthach or Clanna Fothart ....
Hy Fogarta or Clanna Fogartaid, (Eoganacht) .... Clanna Failge ...
Descendants of Cuchorp ... Clanna Conchorb ...
Kinel Broasal Breac ...
Mottoes of Irish Families
Included are Some Titles of Families in Ireland of Norman Descent.
Also included is a list of Irish Families, and the worthies whom name they adopted.
Names & Locations of Other Families in Ireland
Incuding The names of families that came to Ireland from other countries, the Counties where they settled, ethnic origins and the Date of Immigration to Ireland. This includes the many English, Welsh and Scottish names now in Ireland.
Explanation of Abbreviations
A few names of families omitted from the Tribe Tables.
Different Modes of Spelling Milesian Family Names
The Legend of St. Patricks Hand
Index of Arms
The Final Word
This is one of the few early and classic works on Irish family history.
Full 8 1/2” x 11” size. Printed on parchment style paper, heavier parchement type cover, lay flat binding, 86 p., Indexed. Charts.
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