Origin of the Name McGivern
family history was found in the allfamilycrests.com archives.
Over the centuries Surnames developed a wide number of variants. Different spellings of the same name can be traced back to an original root. Additionally when a bearer of a name emigrated it was not uncommon that their original name would be incorrectly transcribed in the record books at their new location. Surnames were also often altered over the years based on how they sounded phonetically and depending on the prevailing political conditions it may have been advantageous to change a name from one language to another.
Variants of the name McGivern
include Biggar, Bickerstaff and Montgomery. This name is derived from the Gaelic Mag Uidhrin Sept of Counties Armagh and Down. The name is taken from the Gaelic word 'odhar'. In the Newry area the synonym Biggar that is often used has been changed to Bickerstaff. In Downpatrick the synonym Montgomery is more common. The original Gaelic sept were from County Tyrone initially, but by the sixteenth century they were well established in County Down. Francis Joseph Biggar, 1863-1927, was one of the great Irish historians. William P. McGivern, 1922-1982, was a famous author and screenwriter.
The McGivern 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 McGivern descendants.