Walsh Coat of Arms
Walsh Coat of Arms

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Irish names are many and varied. Due to its thousand year history of invasion and conflict first the  Vikings then the Norman’s and last the the protestant English. All of these groups came and stayed in Ireland. They married into the local Gaelic families and each other giving Ireland a very wide variety of surnames from all these different in influences. Traditional Irish names like Kearney and Doherty, Norman names such as Burke and Barry, Viking names like Doyle and of course the hundreds names of Scotsmen who arrived in the 16th and 17th century.

Most traditional Irish names come from four sources; nicknames, place names, occupation names and of course patronymic names. Conghaile the Gaelic for “valorous” became Anglicized to the Irish name Connelly The tradition of naming  for places or landmarks is common throughout Europe. The name Cullen comes from the Gaelic for “holy tree”. The most common occupation name in Ireland is Clark which came from the occupation of church clerks. The patronymic name forms of Ireland are the Mc or Mac names meaning “son of” the “O” form meaning the “grandson” or “family of” and Fitz which is the Norman French version of “Son of”. Now ley us explore your name.

Walsh is the common Irish name given to the hundreds of Welchman who came to Ireland during the 12th-century Norman invasion. The earliest Walshes recorded in Ireland are the 12th century brothers Phillip and David the progenitors of the Dublin, Waterford, Kilkenny and Wicklow Walshes but there really is no common ancestor for the Walshes.