Moors History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

There are several distinct sources of the Moors surname in Ireland. Most of the name find their roots with the Anglo-Norman "Strongbow" invasion of the 12th century. Many of these became de Mora. Others derived from the Old Irish "O Mordha," from the word "mordha," meaning "stately," or "noble." [1] The English surname Moors is derived from the personal name "More," which is itself derived from the Old French word "maur," meaning "Moor."

Early Origins of the Moors family

The surname Moors was first found in Munster, where the name was firmly established shortly after the Strongbow invasion of Ireland in 1172. [1]

'Aimergin Ua Mordha, A.D. 1026.' O'Mordha is Anglicised O'More and More, which has now usually become Moore, The O'Mores were a powerful sept in Ireland." [2]

"Donal Mór (d. 1194), son of Turlough, was the last King of North Munster. " [3] The Guinness or MacGunness family claim descent from Cionga, son of Rory Mór and had a similar coat of arms complete with a gold lion on a green shield denoting their heritage.

Moore or O'Moore were the hereditary Lords of Leix. Of this branch was Charles O'More who had a younger brother named Rory Oge who in 1587 was slain by the English.

The Moores of Rahinduffe, Queen's County are a branch of this previous family. Of note was Anthony O'Moore who joined with the O'Neills and defeated the English army in 1598. [3]

Early History of the Moors family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Moors research. Another 124 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1627, 1621, 1730, 1822, 1791, 1729, 1799, 1795, 1557, 1600, 1655, 1641, 1620, 1655, 1641, 1767, 1799, 1798, 1706, 1700 and 1703 are included under the topic Early Moors History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Moors Spelling Variations

During the Middle Ages, a single person often had their name recorded by church officials and scribes many different ways. Names were typically spelt as they sounded, which resulted in many different spelling variations. The many versions of the name Moors to have been recorded over the years include: Moore, More, Moor, O'More, Moores, Mores, McMore, Moire, Moare, MacMoore, McMoir, Moir, Moors, O'Moore, O'Moire, McMoare, MacMoir, MacMoare, Mooer and many more.

Early Notables of the Moors family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family up to this time was Rory O'More (d. 1557) and his son Rory Og O'More, who were both Irish leaders in the wars against the English (Tudor) Kings; Rory O'Moore (Roger O'Moore, O'More, Sir Roger Moore) (c.1600-1655), an Irish landowner of ancient lineage, most notable for being one of the four principal organizers of the Irish Rebellion of 1641; Rory "Roger" More...
Another 66 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Moors Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Moors Ranking

In the United States, the name Moors is the 18,077th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [4]


United States Moors migration to the United States +

In the 1840s, Ireland experienced a mass exodus to North America due to the Great Potato Famine. These families wanted to escape from hunger and disease that was ravaging their homeland. With the promise of work, freedom and land overseas, the Irish looked upon British North America and the United States as a means of hope and prosperity. Those that survived the journey were able to achieve this through much hard work and perseverance. Early immigration and passenger lists revealed many bearing the name Moors:

Moors Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Maria Moors, who arrived in New York in 1659 [5]
  • William Moors, aged 18, who landed in Virginia in 1683 [5]
Moors Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Francis Moors, who arrived in Virginia in 1711 [5]
Moors Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John Moors, who landed in Texas in 1835 [5]

Australia Moors migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Moors Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • George Moors, English convict from Lancaster, who was transported aboard the "Asia" on September 3rd, 1820, settling in New South Wales, Australia [6]
  • Mr. John Moors, English convict who was convicted in Kent, England for life, transported aboard the "Champion" on 24th May 1827, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [7]
  • Mr. John Moors, British convict who was convicted in Wells, Somerset, England for 10 years, transported aboard the "Cornwall" on 28th February 1851, arriving in Tasmania (Van Diemen's Land) [8]
  • James Moors, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke of Wellington" in 1851 [9]

New Zealand Moors migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Moors Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Henry J. Moors, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Portland" in 1864

Contemporary Notables of the name Moors (post 1700) +

  • Roel Moors (b. 1978), Belgian professional basketball player
  • Junior Moors (b. 1986), New Zealand professional rugby league footballer
  • John Moors Cabot (1901-1981), U.S. Diplomat, Ambassador to Pakistan, and to Sweden
  • John Moors Cabot (1901-1981), American politician, U.S. Ambassador to Sweden, 1954-57; Colombia, 1957; Brazil, 1959-61; Poland, 1962-65 [10]


The Moors 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: Conlan-a-bu
Motto Translation: Conlan forever.


  1. ^ MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
  2. ^ Moore, A.W., Manx Names. London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1906. Print
  3. ^ O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
  4. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  5. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  6. ^ State Library of Queensland. (Retrieved 2016, October 27) Asia 1 voyage to Van Diemen's Land, Australia in 1820 with 192 passengers. Retrieved from http://www.convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1820
  7. ^ Convict Records of Australia (Retreived 18th January 2021, retreived from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/champion)
  8. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 11th March 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/cornwall
  9. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) DUKE OF WELLINGTON 1851. Retrieved http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1851DukeOfWellington.htm
  10. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 11) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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