The old Gaelic name used by the O'brein family in Ireland
was O Briain, which means descendant of Brian.
Early Origins of the O'brein family
The surname O'brein was first found in Thomond
, a territory comprised of most of County Clare
with adjacent parts of counties Limerick
. Prior to the 10th century, the sept was a Dalcassian Clan
known as the Ui Toirdealbhaigh and achieved prominence with the rise of their eponymous ancestor, Brian Boru (941-1014), to the High Kingship of Ireland
. Brian Boru, by far the most outstanding figure of this family, is widely acknowledged as the greatest of all the ancient Kings of Ireland
and is best remembered for driving the Norsemen out of Ireland
at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014.
Early History of the O'brein family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'brein research.Another 187 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1551, 1369, 1400, 1577, 1663, 1690, 1614, 1674, 1642, 1678, 1640, 1692, 1699, 1771, 1600, 1651, 1642, 1717, 1692 and 1714 are included under the topic Early O'brein History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'brein Spelling Variations
Within archives, many different spelling variations
exist for the surname O'brein. Ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in the name of the single person being recorded under several different spellings. Different spellings that were found include O'Brien, OBrine, O'Brion, O'Bryan, O'Bryen, McBrien, McBrine, Brian, Briand, Briant, Brine, Brines, Briens and many more.
Early Notables of the O'brein family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family name at this time was Brian Sreamhach MacMathghamhna O'Brien, king of the Irish region of Thomond
(1369-1400); Daniel O'Brien (1577-1663), member of the Supreme Council of Catholic Confederates; Daniel O'Brien (d. 1690), founder of the Irish Brigade known as Clare's Dragoons; Murrough McDermod O'Brien, 1st Earl of Inchiquin and 6th Baron
Inchiquin (1614-1674); Henry O'Brien, Lord Ibrackan or Lord... Another 63 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'brein Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'brein family to the New World and Oceana
North America accepted thousands of Irish immigrants during the 19th century as their homeland suffered under foreign imperialistic rule. Although settlers from the early portion of the century came to North America by choice in search of land, by far the largest influx of Irish immigrants came to North America during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. Many of these Irish families
left the country destitute and in some cases suffering from disease. However, those who survived the long ocean voyage were especially vital to the development of industry in the United States and what would become known as Canada. Research of immigration and passenger lists has shown many early immigrants bearing the name O'brein: Archibald O'Brian settled in Virginia in 1773.