While this surname is generally regarded as Irish, we must look further back to properly understand its origin. Taaf is actually derived from the Welsh
name Taaffe, which is a form of the personal name
David and is related to the modern pet name Taffy. The Irish Gaelic form of the surname Taaf is Táth, which is pronounced, and indeed, often spelled, Taa.
Early Origins of the Taaf family
The surname Taaf was first found in County Louth
(Irish: Lú) the smallest county in Ireland
, located on the East coast, in the Province of Leinster
where the family rapidly rose to positions of great importance shortly after their settlement during the Anglo- Norman invasion
. "Lord Taafe's ancestors were a Welsh
family, who settled in Ireland
at the English invasion." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Sir Nicholas Taafe's grandson, Richard Taafe seated at Castle Lumpnagh was Sheriff of Dublin
in 1295, and later Sheriff of County Louth
in 1315. His son was Archbishop of Armagh. This line of early nobility continued well into the 14th and 15th centuries with more Sheriffs of Louth on record. CITATION[CLOSE]
MacLysaght, Edward, Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1982. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7)
Early History of the Taaf family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Taaf research.Another 271 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1284, 1441, 1649, 1641, 1603, 1677, 1642, 1661, 1639 and 1704 are included under the topic Early Taaf History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Taaf Spelling Variations
During an investigation of the origin of each name, it was found that church officials and medieval scribes spelled many surnames as they sounded. Therefore, during the lifetime of a single person, a name could be spelt numerous ways. Some of the spelling variations
for the name Taaf include Taafe, Taaf, Taffe, Taffee, Taffie, Taffey and others.
Early Notables of the Taaf family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family up to this time was John Taaffe, 1st Viscount Taaffe (died before 1641); Theobald Taaffe, 1st Earl of Carlingford (c.
1603-1677), 2nd Viscount Taaffe, of Corren and 2nd Baron
of Ballymote between 1642 and 1661, Irish Royalist officer... Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Taaf Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Taaf family to the New World and Oceana
experienced a dramatic decrease in its population during the 19th century. This was in a great measure, a response to England's imperialistic policies. Hunger and disease took the lives of many Irish people and many more chose to leave their homeland to escape the horrific conditions. North America with its promise of work, freedom, and land was an extremely popular destination for Irish families
. For those families that survived the journey, all three of these things were often attained through much hard work and perseverance. Research into early immigration and passenger lists revealed many immigrants bearing the name Taaf:
Taaf Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Peter Taaf, who settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1772
The Taaf 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 hoc signo spes mea
Motto Translation: In this sign is my hope.