Origin of the Name O'Shaughnessy
The ancient history of the name O'Shaughnessy
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 O'Shaughnessy
include Shaughnesy and O'Shaughnessey. These names are derived from the native Gaelic O'Seachnasaigh sept who were of considerable importance in that part of Galway known as the barony of Kiltartan. They have an illustrious origin, being of the southern Ui Fiachrach, descended from the famous King Daithi, the last Pagan King of Ireland. In the eleventh century they supplanted their kinsmen the O'Cahills and also the O'Clerys as the principal sept of Ui Fiachra Aidhne. From the year 1100 onwards they are recorded as Chiefs and described in the 'Composition Book of Connacht' as rulers of 'O'Shaughnessy's Country'.
The O'Shaughnessy 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 O'Shaughnessy descendants.