Allan Scahill's County Mayo, Lancashire and Cheshire Roots

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The History And Origin Of The Scahill Name

The Scahill Name History Certificate

The Irish surname Scahill is an anglicized form of the Gaelic MacScaithghil. The prefix “mac” signifies “son of” and indicates the patronymic origin for the name, while the first name is probably derived from ”scaith geal”, meaning bright flower.

Variants of the Scahill name are:

Sahil, Scahail, Scahal, Scahaill, Scahall, Scaheil, Scaheill, Scahel, Scahhil, Scahhill, Scahil, Scail, Scarhill, Scarles, Schaill, Schahill, Seahil, Sehill, Seahill, Shahill, Skahell, Skahil, Skahile, Skahill, Skaehil, Skaehill, Skehel, Skehill, Skilhill.

The MacScahill sect was located in east Galway and the name is now found there and in County Mayo in small numbers.

Excerpt from the book by Dr. Edward MacLysaght "MORE IRISH FAMILIES" 1982:

O'Dugan in his topographical poem, written about 1365, refers to Mac Sgaithghil (i.e. Mac Scahill) as "of beautiful studs" and as "over Corca Mogha" (i.e. Corcamoe which may be equated with the present parish of Kilkerrin in east Galway), but it is recorded elsewhere that they were dispossessed of this territory by the Concannons before 1170.

The prefix "O" (i.e. grandson of or descendant) was sometimes used with this name, but both prefixes have by now fallen into disuse.

In general, Gaelic prefixes, which date from the tenth century, tended to be discarded from the seventeenth century, a time of religious and cultural persecution and of renewed colonization by England, despite a revival of sorts in the late nineteenth century under the auspices of the Gaelic league, there are still, even today, a number of surnames where the prefix is rarely, if ever, seen.

To conclude, this surname has been equated, albeit wrongly, with Cahill from time to time so that it is possible that some Cahill's were Scahill's.

Dr. Edward MacLysaght 1887-1986.

Dr. Edward MacLysaght was once the Chief Herald of Ireland.

As a historian and author he wrote 15 books in both Irish and English and edited over 60.

He was acknowledged in his time as the foremost family historian in Ireland. His diversity has led him to be remembered for many different things and for being the Chief Herald of Ireland.

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Updated By Allan Scahill On December 19, 2008
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