Show ContentsMcAveant History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The roots of the name McAveant are found among the Pictish clans of ancient Scotland. The name comes from the Gaelic word Beathan or betha which means life. Bean was also the name of a saint in the Breviary of Aberdeen.

Early Origins of the McAveant family

The surname McAveant was first found in Aberdeen (part of the modern Grampian region), where one of the first times the name arose was a Bean who was a magistrate circa 1210. It is known, however, that the MacBains moved to Invernessshire, as sod bearers to the Chiefs of the great Clan Chattan (a powerful confederation of early Clans). The name literally means "son of the fair lad," and was frequently translated to MacBean (Bain.)

Saint Bean or Beyn (fl. 1011), was, according to Fordun, appointed first bishop of Murthlach by Malclom II, at the instance of Pope Benedict VIII. A fragment of the charter of Malcolm II (1003-1029?), preserved in the register of the diocese of Aberdeen confirms this claim. [1] However, St. Bean is distinctly referred to as a native of Ireland: 'In Hybernia natalis Beani primi episcopi Aberdonensis et confessoris'. [1]

Early History of the McAveant family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our McAveant research. Another 139 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1411, 1400, 1550 and 1745 are included under the topic Early McAveant History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

McAveant Spelling Variations

Although Medieval Scotland lacked a basic set of spelling rules, which meant that scribes recorded names according to their sounds it was not uncommon for the names of a father and son to be recorded differently. As a result, there are many spelling variations of Scottish single names. McAveant has been written Bean, Beane, Beyn, Bayn, Bene, Bane, Baine, Beine, Bayne, Beyne, Been, Beaine, MacBain, MacBean, MacVain, MacBean, MacVan and many more.

Early Notables of the McAveant family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the McAveant family to Ireland

Some of the McAveant family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the McAveant family

Thousands of Scots left their home country to travel to Ireland or Australia, or to cross the Atlantic for the North American colonies. The difficult crossing was an enormous hurdle, but those who survived found freedom and opportunity in ample measure. Some Scots even fought for their freedom in the American War of Independence. This century, their ancestors have become aware of the illustrious history of the Scots in North America and at home through Clan societies and other organizations. Passenger and immigration lists show many early and influential immigrants bearing the name McAveant: Alexander Bean who settled in Georgia in 1775; Duncan Bean who settled in Jamaica in 1716; Alexander Bain who settled in Maryland in 1774; John Baine settled in south Carolina in 1716.



The McAveant 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: Touch not the catt bot a targe
Motto Translation: Touch not the cat without a shield.


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


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