The Irish surnames in use today are underpinned by a multitude of rich histories. The name Dunican originally appeared in Gaelic as O Donnagain. The first portion of the name is probably derived from "donn," which means brown, while the second portion of the name is probably derived from and ancient Irish personal name.
Early Origins of the Dunican family
The surname Dunican was first found in County Cork
(Irish: Corcaigh) the ancient Kingdom of Deis Muin (Desmond), located on the southwest coast of Ireland
in the province of Munster
, where they held a family seat
at Muskerry, later moving to Limerick
Early History of the Dunican family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunican research.Another 227 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1300, 1395, 1412, 1413, 1634 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Dunican History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Dunican Spelling Variations
The spelling of names in Ireland
during the Middle Ages was rarely consistent. This inconsistency was due to the scribes and church officials' attempts to record orally defined names in writing. The common practice of recording names as they sounded resulted in spelling variations
such as Donegan, Donnegan, Doneghan, Donneghan, Donagan, Donnagan, Donnaghan, Dunnegan, O'Donegan, O'Dunnegan, O'Donnaghan, Dongan, Donegin, Donnegin, Donnagen, Donagen, Donnegen, Donegen, Donnigan, Donigan, Dunnican, Dunican, Dunnigan, McDunnigan, McDonegan, Dongane, Dongin, Dongen and many more.
Early Notables of the Dunican family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was John Donegan (died 1413), a medieval Manx prelate. After holding the position of Archdeacon of Down, he held three successive bishoprics, Mann and the Isles (Sodor), then... Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dunican Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Dunican family to the New World and Oceana
In the late 18th century, Irish families
began emigrating to North America in the search of a plot of land to call their own. This pattern of emigration grew steadily until the 1840s when the Great Potato Famine
of the 1840s cause thousands of Irish to flee the death and disease that accompanied the disaster. Those that made it alive to the shores of the United States and British North America (later to become Canada) were, however, instrumental in the development of those two powerful nations. Many of these Irish immigrants proudly bore the name of Dunican: Thomas Donegan, the Earl of Limerick
, who became Governor of New York from 1683 to 1691. Patrick Donegan settled in Maryland in 1742; Andrew, Charles, Christopher, John, Mathew, Patrick, Phillip, Thomas Donegan, all arrived in Pennsylvania between 1839 and 1878.
Contemporary Notables of the name Dunican (post 1700)
- Peter Thomas Dunican CBE (1918-1989), English structural engineer and former chairman of Ove Arup & Partners