Kavanagh / / Family History
The ancient origin of the name Kavanagh
was found in the irishsurnames.com archives.
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 Kavanagh
include Cavanaugh and Keevan. This is a very ancient Gaelic Irish name from 'Caomhanach' denoting an association with Saint Caomhan, the first Kavanagh fostered by a successor of that Saint. He was Donal, son of Dermot MacMurrough, King of Leinster, he being the chief who invited the Anglo-Normans into Ireland. Their territory was in Counties Wexford and Carlow where they have been landowners there up to recent times. They have long been associated with Art MacMurrough, King of Leinster, who put up great resistance to Richard II of England, being styled Kavanagh. A notable person of the name was Cahir Mac Art Kavanagh, 1500-1554, who took part in the Geraldine Rebellion.The Kavanagh
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 Kavanagh