Fayris History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

On the Scottish west coast, the Fayris family was born among the ancient Dalriadan clans. Their name comes from the Scottish surname MacFergus, which means "son of Fergus", which is in turn derived from the Gaelic personal name "Fearghus," composed of the elements "fear," meaning "man," and "gus," meaning "vigor" or "force." This Gaelic name was found early in both Ireland and Scotland. The name is a cognate of with the Cymric "Gwr-gwst," Old Bret. "Urorgost" and the Pictish word "Forcus." This last Pictish form of the name is found on a monument at St. Vigeans in Angus as "Fercos."

Fergus I (fl. 330 B.C.?), "son of Ferchard, was the first king of Scotland, according to the fictitious chronology of Boece and Buchanan, is said to have come to Scotland from Ireland about 330 B.C. to assist the Scots already settled in Scotland against the joint attack of the Picts and Britons. After succeeding in this he is further said to have gone back to Ireland to quell disturbances which had arisen in his absence, and to have been drowned in the passage off the rock or port which got the name of Carrick Fergus from him. " [1]

Early Origins of the Fayris family

The surname Fayris was first found in Galloway (Gaelic: Gall-ghaidhealaibh), an area of southwestern Scotland, now part of the Council Area of Dumfries and Galloway, that formerly consisted of the counties of Wigtown (West Galloway) and Kirkcudbright (East Galloway), Ireland where St. Fergus (Fergustian) (circa 730 AD) was an Irish bishop, who went to Scotland as a missionary.

He settled near Strageath and founded three churches in Strogeth and two in Caithness. It is possible that he was the Fergustus Pictus who went to Rome in 721 AD. According to Irish lore, a family of this name descend from Fergus, Prince of Galloway (d. 1161), who is said to have married a daughter of Henry I of England.

Constantine Mac Fergus (d. 820), was King of the Picts, he "acquired the monarchy by the defeat of Conall Mac Taidg (Teige), who was assassinated in 807 by another Conall, son of Aidan, a Dalriad king in Kintyre. " [1]

Early History of the Fayris family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fayris research. Another 148 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1466, 1499, 1582 and are included under the topic Early Fayris History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Fayris 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. Fayris has appeared as Fergus, Fergie, Forgie, Forgus, Ferris, Farris and many more.

Early Notables of the Fayris family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Fayris family to Ireland

Some of the Fayris family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Fayris 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 Fayris were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Owen Fergus, who settled in Boston in 1739; James Fergus, who arrived in North Carolina in 1740; another James Fergus, who settled in New York in 1774.



  1. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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