Origin of the Name Dunne
family history was found in the allfamilycrests.com archives. The Irish names Dunne and Dunn are an anglicized form of the Gaelic O'Duinn sept name that was originally anglicized as O'Doyne. Meaning 'brown complexioned one', this sept originated in County Leix and formed one of the principal families of Leinster , their Chiefs being Lords of Iregan.
A sept or clan is a collective term describing a group of persons whose immediate ancestors bore a common surname and inhabited the same territory. Irish septs and clans that are related often belong to even larger groups, sometimes called tribes.
The sept gets special mention in the sixteenth century as being hostile and dangerous to the English cause. It is in County Leix that the Dunnes are still to be found in their greatest numbers. The usual spelling is Dunne with many who spell their name as Dunn hailing from Ulster Province. A famous bearer of the name was Gillananaomh O'Duinn (1102-1160) who was a great historian and poet. James O'Dunne (1700-1758) was an active Jacobite and became Bishop of Ossory.
The Dunne coat of arms came into existence centuries ago. The process of creating coats of arms (also often called family crests) began in the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this. The new art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own coat of arms, including all Dunne descendants.