116Possible Vikings Named Buadach? Married into an O'Buadhaigh Line of Descent?
- Feb 1, 2009According to Woulfe's introduction, early Irish people attributed Irish names to some
individual Norsemen. Under this scenario, a Norseman could have been called Buadach
for "victorious" and later anglicized it. Another possibility is a Viking intermarrying with a
brach of descent from the O'Buadhaigh sept and taking the name, then later anglicizing
it ... These Viking/Irish intermarriages were fairly common. I read years ago of male
settlers from other countries marrying into Irish families and taking the wife's Irish name,
though Woulfe emphasizes the opposite - intermarriages where Irish gals took the Norse
names. My understanding from earlier reading is that in that culture the emphasis wasn't
on the name so much as the association it provided. It was a question of taking the name
of the family that had the desired social connections, wealth, political alliances, etc.
"At the period of the Norse invasions, hereditary surnames ... were not yet in vogue, and
whatever surnames were adopted at a later period by the Norsemen who settled down in
Ireland were formed after the Irish fashion by prefixing O or Mac to the names or other
designations of their ancestors. Meanwhile through intermarriages and other alliances of
friendship with the Irish, they had been adopting Irish personal names [enter Buadach?]."
"As a consequence of this interchange of names between the two nations, a name,
whether Norse or Irish, was, at the period when surnames were being formed, [even that
long ago] no sure indication of nationality, and for the same reason it is now impossible
to say, judging merely from the surname, whether a family is of Irish or Norse descent." p. xxv
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