Show ContentsYuan History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

On the Scottish west coast, the Yuan family was born among the ancient Dalriadan clans. Their name comes from the personal name Ewen. The Gaelic form of the name was Mac Eoghainn.

Early Origins of the Yuan family

The surname Yuan was first found in Argyllshire (Gaelic erra Ghaidheal), the region of western Scotland corresponding roughly with the ancient Kingdom of Dál Riata, in the Strathclyde region of Scotland, now part of the Council Area of Argyll and Bute, where they were first found in the barony of Otter, on the shores of Loch Fyne. The eponymous ancestor of the Clan is reputed to be Eoghain na h-Oitrich, also known as 'Ewen of Otter', who lived at the beginning of the 12th century. Clear records of the Clan were found in 1219, when Gilpatrik Mac Ewen measured the borders of his lands in Kynblathmund.

Early History of the Yuan family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Yuan research. Another 123 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1174 and 1219 are included under the topic Early Yuan History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Yuan Spelling Variations

In the Middle Ages, the translation between Gaelic and English was not a highly developed process. Spelling was not yet standardized, and so, an enormous number of spelling variations appear in records of early Scottish names. Yuan has appeared as MacEwen, MacEwan, MacEwing, MacEuen, MacKewin, MacKewan, MacEòghainn (Gaelic) and many more.

Early Notables of the Yuan family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Yuan Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Yuan Ranking

In the United States, the name Yuan is the 9,874th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [1]

Migration of the Yuan family

These settlers arrived in North America at a time when the east was burgeoning with prosperous colonies and the expanses of the west were just being opened up. The American War of Independence was also imminent. Some Scots stayed to fight for a new country, while others who remained loyal went north as United Empire Loyalists. The ancestors of all of them went on to rediscover their heritage in the 20th century through highland games and other patriotic Scottish events. The Yuan were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Archibald MacEuen settled in New York State with his wife Janet and children in 1739; Merran MacEuen settled in New York in 1739 with his wife and daughter.

Contemporary Notables of the name Yuan (post 1700) +

  • Cao Yuan (b. 1995), Chinese diver and an Olympic gold medalist, having won two golds, one silver and one bronze in the Olympics. He has also won golds in diving at the World Championships and World Cups
  • Yuan Wemyss (b. 1976), retired Scottish badminton player who won the Scottish National Championships 13 times
  • Yuan Shikai (1859-1916), Chinese dictator

The Yuan Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Reviresco
Motto Translation: I grow green

  1. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?"., on Facebook