The original Gaelic form of O'Cayill was Mac Cathail or O Cathail, while is derived from the personal name
Cathal, which is generally Anglicized as Charles. O'Cayill is derived from the Old Irish "catu-ualos" which means "valor or powerful in battle".
Early Origins of the O'Cayill family
The surname O'Cayill was first found in County Kerry
as there are at least two distinct septs of the name. The first sept from County Kerry
descend from the Heremon
line of kings and were known as the Cahills of Connaught
. The second sept claim descent from the Ir line of kings and were located at Corkashinny, or the parish of Templemore, Tipperary
. This line further branched to the eponymous Ballycahill, Tipperary. Both branches descended from O'Connors, the Kings of Connacht
, specifically "Cathal," also known as Conor na Luinge Luaithe, when anglicized means "Conor, the Swifter-Sailing Ship" CITATION[CLOSE]
O'Hart, John, Irish Pedigrees 5th Edition in 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0737-4)
which may elude to the seafaring coat of arms used by the family.
Early History of the O'Cayill family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our O'Cayill research.Another 275 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1654, 1796 and 1864 are included under the topic Early O'Cayill History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
O'Cayill Spelling Variations
Names during the Middle Ages were often recorded under several different spelling variations
during the life of their bearers. Literacy was rare at that time and so how a person's name was recorded was decided by the individual scribe. Variations of the name O'Cayill include Cahill, O'Cahill, Kahill, Cawhill, Cahille, Cahil, Cahaly, Cahell, Cahel, Caughell, Kahil, Kahel, Caill, Cail and many more.
Early Notables of the O'Cayill family (pre 1700)
Notable among the family name at this time was Flan O'Cahill, martyred in 938; Daniel O'Cahill, brother of Bogh O'Cahill, chief of the Clan
, forfeited under the... Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early O'Cayill Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the O'Cayill family to the New World and Oceana
began to immigrate to British North America and the United States in the 18th century, but the greatest influx of Irish immigrants came during the Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. The earlier settlers came to North America after a great deal of consideration and by paying relatively high fees for their passage. These settlers were primarily drawn by the promise of land. Those later settlers that came during the 1840's were trying to escape the conditions of poverty, starvation, disease, and death that had stricken Ireland
. Due to the enormity of their numbers and the late date of their arrival, these immigrants primarily became hired laborers instead of homesteading settlers like their predecessors. An exhaustive search of immigration and passenger lists has revealed many Irish immigrants North America bearing the name O'Cayill: Elizabeth Cahill, a bonded passenger, who arrived in America in 1735; Thomas Cahill, an "enforced emigrant" sent to America from Ireland
The O'Cayill 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: In Domino confido
Motto Translation: I trust in the Lord.