MacChristien History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The old Scottish-Dalriadan name MacChristien is derived from the Latin given name Christianus, which means "belonging to Christ." Christianus was also the name of the 12th century Irish saint and Bishop of Candida Casa, and brother of St. Malachy of Armagh. Thus, the surname Christian became an extremely popular name, particularly in regions of Celtic or Irish influence such as Scotland, northern England, and the Isle of Man. It was also a common given name amongst the Danes and was the name of several Danish kings.
The name is "very common in some parts of Scotland. Sir Walter Scott tells a story of an unsuccessful gaberlunzie woman who in the bitterness of her disappointment exclaimed: "Are there no Christians here?" and was answered: "Christians! nae, we be a' Elliots and Armstrangs !" 
"Christianus was the name of a bishop of Candida Casa (Whithorn) who died at Holm Cultram in 1186." 
Early Origins of the MacChristien family
The surname MacChristien was first found in the north of England, "a familiar North-English font-name, though not wholly confined to the North." 
As one would expect the early rolls had mixed entries for the name as both a forename and surname. By example, the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed: Jordan filius Cristine, Kent; Agnes filius Cristine, Cambridgeshire; Brice Cristian, Somerset; and Cristina Alayne, Buckinghamshire.
Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed: Cristiane Lyttester; and Cristiana atte Tounead. 
We would be remiss if we didn't mention the Christian family from the Isle of Man in more detail. On the infamous side, the mutineer Fletcher Christian was from this stock, but notably, the rear-admiral Sir Hugh CloBerry Christian (1747-1798), the Max writer Thomas Christian (d. 1799) and William Christian (1608-1663) the Receiver-General of the Isle of Man claimed the Isle of Man as their homeland.
Early History of the MacChristien family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacChristien research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1608, 1663, 1608, 1643 and are included under the topic Early MacChristien History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacChristien Spelling Variations
Translation in medieval times was an undeveloped science and was often carried out without due care. For this reason, many early Scottish names appeared radically altered when written in English. The spelling variations of MacChristien include Christian, Cristian, McChristian, McChristianston and others.
Early Notables of the MacChristien family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the Clan from early times was William Christian (1608-1663), receiver-general of the Isle of Man (famous in Manx history under the name of Illiam Dhône, 'Brown-haired William'), born on 14 April 1608. "He was the third son of Ewan Christian, one of the deemsters or judges of the Isle of Man and deputy-governor of Peel Castle. In 1643 his father made over to him the estate of Ronaldsway. The circumstances of this transaction throw some light on Christian's...
Another 79 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacChristien Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacChristien family to Ireland
Some of the MacChristien family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 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 MacChristien 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 MacChristien were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: William Christian who settled in Virginia in 1652; Captain Christian settled in Boston in 1763; Francis Christian settled in Barbados in 1769 with his wife and son Matthew.
- Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)