Surname Hefferan - Meaning and Origin
all surnames with 'H'
Hefferan: What does the surname Hefferan mean?
The surname Hefferan is an anglicized form of the Irish name "Ó hIfearnáin", mainly found in county Leitrim and parts of Connacht, Ireland. The original Gaelic version of the name, Ó hIfearnáin, was derived from the word "ifearnán", which means "demon". Therefore, the anglicized version "Hefferan" could loosely be interpreted to mean "descendant of the demon". However, it's important to note that surnames were often used to describe certain characteristics or traits, and this does not necessarily imply a negative connotation. The 'Ó' before the name originally meant 'grandson of' or 'descendant of'. The exact meaning of the name can be subjective and it may change over time or vary across geographical locations. Surnames in Ireland often have deep historical and cultural significances, tracing back to ancient clans and family lines.
Hefferan: Where does the name Hefferan come from?
The surname Hefferan is of Irish origin. It is derived from the Gaelic name "O hIfearnain," which roughly translates to "descendant of Ifearnan." The name Ifearnan itself comes from the elements "i" meaning "yew" and "fearn" meaning "alder."
Many variations of the name Hefferan exist due to the different ways it has been translated or Anglicised from Gaelic, with variations including Heffernan, Hefferin and O'Heffernan. This surname spread across the globe due to emigration during the 19th and 20th centuries, largely due to the Great Irish Famine in the mid-19th century.
Today, the surname Hefferan is common in the United States, Ireland, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Despite its dispersion through migration, the regions with the largest concentration of people with the Hefferan surname remain in Ireland, particularly in County Clare and County Limerick, reflecting its Gaelic roots.
Variations of the surname Hefferan
The surname Hefferan is likely of Irish origin and can be spelled in different ways. Some of these variants include Heffernan, Heffran, Hefferon, Heffron, O'Heffernan, Effernan, O'Heffron, and Hefernan, among others. The different spellings are often the result of attempts to transliterate the Irish language into English, and variations can also be due to regional dialects.
The surname Hefferan might be derived from the Gaelic name "Ó hIfearnáin," which means "descendant of Ifearnán." The personal name Ifearnán is a diminutive of "ifearn," meaning "demon."
The surname has also been traced back to County Clare and County Limerick in Ireland, where the O'Heffernans were a notable family, descended from an 11th-century chieftain named Ifearnán. Some members of the family migrated to the United States, Canada, and Australia in the 19th and 20th centuries, resulting in these different spellings.
Despite the many spelling variants, all versions of the Hefferan surname share a common cultural and ethnic origin. However, it's worth noting that it’s not always the case that individuals with these surnames are related, as different families may have independently adopted or been assigned similar surnames over the centuries.
Famous people with the name Hefferan
- Ryan Heffernan: Irish actor and filmmaker.
- Ray Heffernan: Australian actor, writer, and producer.
- Mike Heffernan: American radio and television personality.
- Edward Heffernan: American screenwriter and television producer.
- Matt Heffernan: American golfer.
- Patrick Heffernan: Irish stage, film, and television actor.
- Florence Heffernan: American silent film actress.
- James Heffernan: Canadian actor and screenwriter.
- Tim Heffernan: Australian rugby league player.
- Mary Heffernan: Irish writer and TV presenter.
- Eamonn Heffernan: Irish political scientist and lecturer.
- Christian Heffernan: Australian soccer player.
- Niall Heffernan: Irish rugby union player.
- Mark Heffernan: Irish composer.
- Charlie Heffernan: American Actor.
- Neil Heffernan: American computer scientist.
- Christopher Heffernan: American professional ice hockey executive.
- Liam Heffernan: Australian basketball player.
- Barry Heffernan: Irish Gaelic footballer.
- Suzannah Heffernan: British actress.