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MacPhie History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



MacPhie is an ancient Dalriadan-Scottish nickname for a dark-featured, peaceful person. The Gaelic name of the Clan is Mac Dubhshithe, which translates as black one of peace. One branch of the Clan on the island of North Uist was known as Dubh-sidh, meaning 'black fairy,' due to their whimsical association with the faerie folk.


Early Origins of the MacPhie family


The surname MacPhie was first found in on the Isle of Colonsay, where the eponymous ancestor of the Clan may be Dubhshith, also called Dubside, who was lector at the Cathedral on the sacred isle of Iona in 1164. As the name MacFee is one of the oldest of all Dalriadan surnames it appears in records as early as the reign of Alexander II, when Johannes Macdufthi was witness to a charter in Dumfriesshire. In 1296, Thomas Macdoffy swore an oath of allegiance to the king.

Early History of the MacPhie family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacPhie research.
Another 226 words (16 lines of text) covering the year 1838 is included under the topic Early MacPhie History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

MacPhie 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 MacPhie include MacFie, McFey, MacFee, MacDuffie, MacPhee, MacGuffie, MacCuffie, MacPhie, Maffie, Maffey, MacDubh-shithe (Gaelic) and many more.

Early Notables of the MacPhie family (pre 1700)


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

Migration of the MacPhie family to Ireland


Some of the MacPhie family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 89 words (6 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 MacPhie family to the New World and Oceana


Ancestors of many of the Dalriadan families who crossed the Atlantic still live along the east coast of the United States and Canada. Some Scottish settlers arrived in Canada during the American War of Independence as United Empire Loyalists, while others stayed south to fight for a new nation. The descendants of Scottish settlers in both countries began to rediscover their heritage in the 19th and 20th centuries through Clan societies and highland games. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name MacPhie or a variant listed above:

MacPhie Settlers in United States in the 20th Century

  • Bella M. Macphie, aged 16, who emigrated to the United States from Nairn, in 1904
  • John Macphie, aged 52, who landed in America from Nairn, in 1904
  • Norma M. Macphie, aged 8, who landed in America from Nairn, in 1904
  • Sarah Macphie, aged 15, who emigrated to the United States from Nairn, in 1904
  • Jessie Macphie, aged 30, who emigrated to the United States from Argyll, Scotland, in 1913
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name MacPhie (post 1700)


  • Brian MacPhie (b. 1972), American retired professional tennis player
  • Hugh Drake MacPhie (b. 1972), American author, consultant, and founder of MacPhie & Company

The MacPhie 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: Pro Rege
Motto Translation: For the King.


MacPhie Clan Badge

MacPhie Clan Badge

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A clan is a social group made up of a number of distinct branch-families that actually descended from, or accepted themselves as descendants of, a common ancestor. The word clan means simply children. The idea of the clan as a community is necessarily based around this idea of heredity and is most often ruled according to a patriarchal structure. For instance, the clan chief represented the hereditary "parent" of the entire clan. The most prominent example of this form of society is the Scottish Clan system...

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