Origin of the Name Maguire
The origin of the name Maguire
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 Maguire
include McGuire, Magwyer, McGwyer and others. This name is derived from the Mag Uidhir sept name that is taken from Gaelic words that translate as 'don colored'.
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.
This ancient Irish surname originated in County Fermanagh where they were the leading Gaelic family, later spreading to Mayo and Roscommon where it is usually spelt McGuire. The Maguires are recorded in Irish history as early as the year 956 A.D. In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries the sept became one of the most powerful in Ulster but suffered severely under the Cromwellian and Williamite confiscations. Maguire, Baron of Enniskillen, had a regiment of infantry in James the second's army. Subsequently the Maguires figured prominently among the 'Wild Geese' in the service of France and Austria.
The Maguire 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 Maguire descendants.