When the Stongbow settlers arrived in Ireland
, they quickly learned that the Irish had a pre-established system of hereditary surnames
. The name Uniyck is an occupational
surname, which was primarily from the Anglo-Norman culture. There were a few Irish occupational names, however, previous to the arrival of the Strongbownians, so this Anglo-Norman tradition was not too incongruous within the island. Occupational
surnames were derived from a word describing the actual job done by the initial name bearer. The Strongbownians frequently prefixed these names with the French word le, meaning the, but this custom quickly died out in Ireland
. The surname Uniyck came from a common occupational name for a valued military officer. The surname Uniyck is derived from the expression Unicus Est. According to tradition, during the bitter 13th century feuds between the two powerful Anglo-Norman families of the Fitzgeralds and the Butlers, a Commander who sought help to secure a position pointed to a particularly valued captain and said Unicus Est, which means Hei is the only one to undertake this service. The name Garde was also used as a synonym.
Early Origins of the Uniyck family
The surname Uniyck was first found in County Cork
(Irish: Corcaigh) the ancient Kingdom of Deis Muin (Desmond), located on the southwest coast of Ireland
in the province of Munster
, where they held a family seat
from ancient times, soon after the Anglo Norman Conquest
in 1172 A.D. That this family name were Norman mercenaries seems reasonably clear. In the bitter 13th century feuds between the Fitzgeralds and the Butlers it is said that a commander, seeking help to secure a position, pointed to one of the captains and said, 'Unicus Est', meaning 'He is the only one to undertake this service'. Hence this expression not only became the family motto but it also became the basis and origin of the family name itself, Uniacke. Later some used Gard as a synonym.
Early History of the Uniyck family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Uniyck research.Another 173 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 197 and 1976 are included under the topic Early Uniyck History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Uniyck Spelling Variations
Church officials and medieval scribes often spelled early surnames as they sounded. This practice often resulted in many spelling variations
of even a single name. Early versions of the name Uniyck included: Uniacke, Uniake, Uniack, Uniak, Garde, Gard and others.
Early Notables of the Uniyck family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Uniyck Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Uniyck family to the New World and Oceana
The Irish emigration during the late 18th and 19th century contributed to the melting pot of nationalities in North America, and the building of a whole new era of industry and commerce in what was seen as a rich, new land. Ireland's Great Potato Famine
resulted in the worst economic and social conditions in the island's history. And in response to the hunger, disease, and poverty, during this decade the total number of emigrants to leave for North America rivaled all the previous years combined. Those from this decade that arrived on North American shores were not warmly welcomed by the established population, but they were vital to the rapid development of the industry, agriculture, and infrastructure of the infant nations of the United States and what would become Canada. Research into early immigration and passenger lists has shown many people bearing the name Uniyck: Edward Uniacke arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1852.