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O'Sullivan


Coat of Arms


In Irish O'Sullivan is O Suileabhain. The derivation of the name is in dispute among scholars. There is no doubt that the root word is suil (eye), but whether it is to be taken as one-eyed or hawk-eyed must be left an open question. While not quite as numerous as Murphy and Kelly, Sullivan, which is by far the commonest surname in Munster, comes third in the list for all Ireland. Almost eighty per .....


Heraldry Database: O'boyle

O'Boyle







Surname:  O'Boyle
Branch:  O'Boyle
Origins:  Irish
More Info:  Ireland

Background:  From the County of Donegal, Ireland. The name is occasionally made Bohill in County Down. The famous Boyle, Earl of Cork, was of an old English (Hertfordshire) family. BOYLE Boyle, or O’Boyle, is now one of the fifty most common surnames in Ireland. In Irish the name is O’Baoghill, the derivation of which is uncertain, but thought to be connected to the Irish geall, meaning ‘pledge’. In the Middle Ages the family were powerful and respected, sharing control of the entire northwest of the island with the O’Donnells and the O’Dohertys, and the strongest association of the family is still with County Donegal, where (O)Boyle is the third most numerous name in the county. The majority of those bearing the name are of Gaelic origin, but many Irish Boyles have separate, Norman origins.


Motto:  Dominus providebit, The Lord will provide.
Arms:  Or an oaktree eradicated vert..
Crest:  A sword point upwards proper and a passion cross or in saltire surmounted of a heart gules..


View the Heraldry Dictionary for help.




Boyle is O' Baoighill in modern Irish, the derivation of which is possibly from the old Irish word baigell, i.e. having profitable pledges: modern scholars reject the derivation baoith-geall. It is thus of course a true native Irish surname and the O'Boyles were a strong sept in County Donegal with a regularly initiated chieftain seated at Cloghineely: they shared with the O'Donnells and the O'Doughertys the leadership if the north-west. Ballyweel, near Donegal town, is a phonetic rendering of Baile ui Bhaoighill (i.e. the home of the O'Boyles). These O'Boyles were noted for their ruddy complexion. Nevertheless the best-known Boyles connected with Ireland were men of English race. When Richard Boyle landed in Ireland in 1588 as a young man without influence few could have anticipated that he would become what has been termed the "first colonial millionaire". He acquired the extensive property of the executed Sir Walter Raleigh in County Waterford. This formed the the nucleus of the vast estates he was to bequesth to his numerous family on his death in 1643, by which time he was Earl of Cork and had held high government ofice. The best known of his sons (born in Ireland) were Roger Boyle (1621 - 1679) Earl of Orrery, and Robert Roger Boyle (1627-1691), chemist and experimental physicist. It is worthy of note that of 15 Boyles in the Dictionary of National Biography 14 belong to this Anglo-Irish family. Some Gaeic-Irish Boyles or O'Boyles have also distinguished themselves, notably William Boyle (1853-1922) Abbey Theatre dramatist, John Boyle (d. 1832) the well-known wit, and Richard Boyle (1822-1908) the railway engineer whose heroism during the Indian Mutiny was renown. The name is common (being included in the fifty most numerous in Ireland), particularly in the Ulster counties of Donegal, Tyrone and Armagh (it takes third place in the first named). It is only in comparatively recent times that the discarded prefix O has been at all widely restored.

Name Variations:  Boyle, O'Boyle, O'Baoighill, Boylan, Bohill.

References:
One or more of the following publications has been referenced for this article.
The General Armory; Sir Bernard Burke - 1842.
A Handbook of Mottoes; C.N. Elvin - 1860.
Irish Families, Their Names, Arms & Origins; Edward MacLysaght - 1957.
The Surnames of Ireland; Edward MacLynsaght - 1957.






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