O'Briain History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The old Gaelic name used by the O'Briain family in Ireland was O Briain, which means descendant of Brian.
Early Origins of the O'Briain family
The surname O'Briain was first found in Thomond, a territory comprised of most of County Clare with adjacent parts of counties Limerick and Tipperary. Prior to the 10th century, the sept was a Dalcassian Clan known as the Ui Toirdealbhaigh and achieved prominence with the rise of their eponymous ancestor, Brian Boru (941-1014), to the High Kingship of Ireland. Brian Boru, by far the most outstanding figure of this family, is widely acknowledged as the greatest of all the ancient Kings of Ireland and is best remembered for driving the Norsemen out of Ireland at the Battle of Clontarf in 1014.
Early History of the O'Briain family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Briain research. Another 187 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1369, 1400, 1551, 1577, 1600, 1614, 1640, 1642, 1651, 1663, 1674, 1678, 1690, 1692, 1699, 1714, 1717 and 1771 are included under the topic Early O'Briain History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Briain Spelling Variations
The recording of names in Ireland in the Middle Ages was an inconsistent endeavor at best. The standardized literary languages of today were not yet reached the general citizenry. Research into the name O'Briain revealed spelling variations, including O'Brien, OBrine, O'Brion, O'Bryan, O'Bryen, McBrien, McBrine, Brian, Briand, Briant, Brine, Brines, Briens and many more.
Early Notables of the O'Briain family
Notable amongst the family name at this time was Brian Sreamhach MacMathghamhna O'Brien, king of the Irish region of Thomond (1369-1400); Daniel O'Brien (1577-1663), member of the Supreme Council of Catholic Confederates; Daniel O'Brien (d. 1690), founder of the Irish Brigade known as Clare's Dragoons; Murrough McDermod O'Brien, 1st Earl of Inchiquin and 6th Baron Inchiquin (1614-1674); Henry O'Brien, Lord Ibrackan or Lord...
Another 63 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Briain Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Briain family
Irish families fled the English-colonized Ireland in record numbers during the 19th century for North America. Many of those destitute families died from disease during, and even shortly after, the long journey. Although those that immigrated before the Great Potato Famine of the 1840s often were granted a tract of land, those that arrived later were generally accommodated in urban centers or in work camps. Those in the urban centers would labor in the manufacturing sector, whereas those in work camps would to build critical infrastructures such as bridges, canals, roads, and railways. Regardless of when these Irish immigrants came to North America, they were critical for the rapid development of the young nations of the United States and Canada. Early immigration and passenger lists have recorded many early immigrants bearing the name of O'Briain: Archibald O'Brian settled in Virginia in 1773.
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: Lamh laidir an Uachtar
Motto Translation: The strong hand from above.