Gavaghan / Coat of Arms, Family Crest and Gavaghan / Family History

Gavaghan / Family History

The ancient origin of the name Gavaghan was found in the archives.

Surnames developed a wide number of variants over the centuries. Many different spelling variations of the same name can be traced back to a single original root. Also, when a bearer of a name emigrated from Ireland it was not uncommon that their original name would be incorrectly transcribed in the record books upon arrival at their new location. Some names have dozens of spelling variations. Some Surnames were also altered over the years based on how they sounded phonetically, by their sound, and depending on the prevailing political conditions it may have been advantageous to change a name from one language to another. This was especially so in Ireland where most Gaelic names were 'anglicized' at some stage.

Variants of the name Gavaghan include Gahan and Gaughan. This name in Irish is O'Gaibhtheachain and the latter variants are the anglicized forms of this. This sept was from Counties Mayo, Roscommon and Donegal. A sept or clan was a collective term describing a group of persons whose immediate ancestors bore a common surname and inhabited the same territory. This name is taken from the Gaelic word 'gaibhtheach', meaning 'anxious'. This sept were of the Hy Fiachrach who possessed territory around Crossmolina in County Mayo. They were Chiefs of Calry in the barony of Tirawley. In modern times bearers of the name are still mostly found in the ancestral homeland.The Gavaghan family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Gavaghan descendants.

Meaning of Symbols & Colors on the Gavaghan / Coat of Arms

Azure/Blue Represents Loyalty and Truth.
Fish Symbol of Christ

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