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The Clan from whom the Dunnel family descends began among the ancient Dalriadan kingdom of the west coast of Scotland. Their name comes from the personal name Donald. the surname is derived from the Gaelic Mac Dhomhnuill, which means son of Donald; it is a form of the surname MacDonald.

Early Origins of the Dunnel family


The surname Dunnel was first found in Inverness, where the origins of this name can be traced back to Somerled, Regulus of the Isles, who evicted the Norsemen from the Western Isles during the 12th century. From him is descended John Macdonald, first Lord of the Isles, and it was MacDonald's younger son, Ranald, who was the progenitor of Clanrald, which includes the families of Moidart, Morar, Knoidart and Glengarry. The MacDonells are from this last branch. It is from Ranald's son, Donald, that the MacDonell's take their name (Son of Donald). There is also a branch of the MacDonells that claim Ranald's other son, Alistair, as its progenitor (the Keppoch branch).

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Early History of the Dunnel family

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Early History of the Dunnel family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunnel research.
Another 751 words (54 lines of text) covering the years 1411, 1575, 1672, 1647, 1745, 1749, 1794, 1812 and 1790 are included under the topic Early Dunnel History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Dunnel Spelling Variations

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Dunnel Spelling Variations


Historical recordings of the name Dunnel include many spelling variations. They are the result of repeated translations of the name from Gaelic to English and inconsistencies in spelling rules. They include MacDonnell, MacDonnel, McDonnell, MacDonell and others.

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Early Notables of the Dunnel family (pre 1700)

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Early Notables of the Dunnel family (pre 1700)


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

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Migration of the Dunnel family to Ireland

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Migration of the Dunnel family to Ireland


Some of the Dunnel family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 223 words (16 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Migration of the Dunnel family to the New World and Oceana

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Migration of the Dunnel family to the New World and Oceana


Significant portions of the populations of both the United States and Canada are still made up of the ancestors of Dalriadan families. Some of those in Canada originally settled the United States, but went north as United Empire Loyalists in the American War of Independence. The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw the ancestors of many Scots on both sides of the border begin to recover their collective national heritage through Clan societies and highland games. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants: John MacDonnell, who settled in Virginia in 1650; and of course, the large settlement of MacDonnells who settled in Canada.

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The Dunnel Motto

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The Dunnel 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: Per mare, per terras
Motto Translation: By water and land.


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Dunnel Family Crest Products

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Dunnel Family Crest Products



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See Also

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