--- In email@example.com
, "Jeff" <bowes2000@...> wrote:
> My own name has undergone a number of variations in the official
> record, currently it's Bowe, yet my great-Grandfather is recorded as
> Bowes, his grand-Father is noted as Bowe. I am tempted to conclude
> that perhaps originally, during the time of the Corca Laidhe, there
> was just Ua Buadhach, which evolved into Buaig, Buadhaig, Buadhaigh,
> Bogue, Bowe, Bwee, Boye, Boe, and Boey.
Funny that your line is mostly Bowe with a Bowes thrown in, while mine is Bowes with a
Bowe thrown in. My earliest known ancestor is Michael Bowe on his marriage record
(1800). I don't have birth recs for any children, but they all used the name Bowes in the
US. They settled in central New York where there was a John Bowe whom they said was
accustomed. I wonder if they used the Anglo-Saxon custom of "s" for "son of", perhaps
later and in their time thought of as an English custom (??), and added the "s" when they
emigrated since they had left their father in Ireland (he came over later). That's the only
explanation I can think of for why this one group of kids added the "s."
> There seems to be a phonetic evolutionary flow to these variants,
> when we add 'Bowes' to the mix an incongrutuity is present.
This is so true. I wouldn't be surprised if only Bowe has truly been an anglicization (for
some lineage(s)) of a Gaelic beginning, while Bowes, having later become a variant of
Bowe is just tagging along for the ride. This still means some Irish Bowes could have
Gaelic roots, just that when it comes to surname origin, the "s" may not have ever
derived directly from O'Buadhaigh.
I got Woulfe's 1923 Ed. of Irish Names and Surnames from interlibrary loan today. (The
prior we were looking at was, I think 1906.) This time he adds Boag as a variant of
Bogue, and Bohig as another anglicization of O'Buadhaigh. He also clarifies for Bowes
from O'Buadhaigh - in contrast to my theory above - that it is "Usual form, including
places to which other forms are assigned. There are in this case two or more names or
surnames similarly anglicised in the same locality." Then, for Bowes from
O'Baothghalaigh, rather than saying it occurs in "some parts of Ireland," he states "some
parts of Ulster." Later, in the list of Irish to English surnames, he lists:
"O'Baotghalaigh - I - Bohill, (Bowes); 'son of Baothghalach' (foolhardy). The head of this
family is mentioned by O'Dugan as one of the chiefs of Clan Fergus in Ulster. I have
failed to discover any early angl. form of the surname, and am by no means certain that
it is still extant. There was also a family surnamed O'Baothgail or O'Baothghaile in the
parish of Skreen, Co. Sligo, but that too seems to have disappeared."
"O'Buadhaigh - I - O Boey, O Bowe, O Boye, O Bwoy, O Bowige, Bowie, Bowe, Buie, Bwee,
Bowes, Boyes, Boyce, O'Boyce, Bohig, Bogue, &c.; 'des. of Buadach' (victorious)'; a very
scattered surname, but most common in Donegal, Kilkenny and Cork. In the last-
mentioned county, the final g is sounded; hence the early angl. form O Bowige and the
modern Bogue. The family is a branch of the Corca Laoighdhe, but was erroneously
supposed to be a branch of the O'Sullivans [this must be what MacLysaght referred to
alongside O'Donovan saying they considered themselves a branch of Sullivan], on account
of the prevalence of the Christian name Buadach and that family; and it is not improbable
that some of them have adopted the name of O'Sullivan or Sullivan."
The thinking here would be that O'Keeffe, Parish priest and Poet of Doneraile, North
Cork, who wrote the Book of Munster, erroneously included the belief among at least
some in "the family" that they were a Sullivan branch when he wrote:
"Maolodhar son of Sealbach had five sons: Ealathach, from whom the Mac Ealathaigh
family; Buadhach, from whom the Ui Buadaigh (O'Bogue)...and Croinin, from whom the Ui
Chroinin family (O'Cronin)."
But the question remains where Woulfe gets his certainty that the family's word was
wrong and they were Corca Laoighdhe. Perhaps he just believes they sought the glamour
of relationship with the O'Sullivans, certainly a possibility, but it's odd that out of the
various Buadhachs in the Sullivan line, one in particular is attributed to Ui Buadaigh; i.e.,
the beginning of a clan. How would the determination of which Buadhach the
O'Buadhaigh "line" came from have been made? I also read that Cronin was Corca
Laoighdhe, and yet they also appear in The Book of Munster as related in the same
I have no clear answers but enjoy reporting, Martha
> --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "mhbowes11" <martha.bowes@>
> > I'm having fun following your conversation ...
> > Here's a different angle on Baothghalach from Webster's online
> > Gaelic- baoth- foolish, stupid, unwise
> > [http://www.websters-online-dictionary.org/translation/Gaelic/baoth%5d
> > Easy to see that these traits could well lead one into danger, but
> still not so clear how
> > Bowes got to be mentioned as an anglicization of it.
> > Martha