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Surname MacMahon/McMahon - Meaning and Origin

all surnames with 'M'

MacMahon/McMahon: What does the surname MacMahon/McMahon mean?

MacMahon or McMahon is an Irish last name that originated from the Gaelic name Mac Mathghamhna, meaning "son of bear". The name suggests descent from a soldier or warrior, given the historical symbolism of the bear as strength and courage in battle. This name is popular among families from the counties of Clare, Monaghan, and Limerick in Ireland. The McMahon families were chiefs in the aforementioned counties and commanded great respect from their kinsfolk. The name's notable variation in spelling (from MacMahon to McMahon) is attributed to its translation from Gaelic to English, a linguistic shift often characterized by a diversity of interpretations and phonetic renderings. Despite the variations, the meaning of the name remains consistent.

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MacMahon/McMahon: Where does the name MacMahon/McMahon come from?

The surname MacMahon or McMahon originates from Ireland. The name is derived from two Gaelic words, "Mac" meaning son, and "Mathuna" which means bear. Traditionally, the surname was used to signify the descendants or sons of a man named Mathuna.

The McMahon family was a powerful Irish clan with territories primarily in the regions of County Clare and County Monaghan. The family was renowned for producing a lineage of chieftains and lords in their respective territories especially during the Middle Ages.

Today, the surname is quite prevalent across the globe due to Irish diaspora, specifically in countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. However, it remains most widespread in Ireland. Notable people with the surname McMahon include former professional wrestler Vince McMahon and actor Julian McMahon.

Variations of the surname MacMahon/McMahon

The surname MacMahon or McMahon is Irish in origin, descending from the Gaelic name Mac Mathghamhna, which means "son of the bear". The name has been altered over time and has various spellings due to phonetic translations. Some common variants of the name include McMahan, McMann, McMains, McMahen, McMeekin, Mahon, Mann, Mathuna, and MacMann.

Surname variations may also use prefixes such as 'Mac', 'Mc', 'M' or 'O', signifying 'son of' or 'descendant of' in Irish and Scottish surnames. Therefore, O'Mahon, O'Mann, or O'Mathuna could also be seen as variations. It is also seen without the prefix, as in 'Mahon'.

Bear in mind, anglicization and Americanization of surnames have lead to simplification and misspellings, creating numerous variations. Furthermore, some families may have changed their names entirely upon immigration, which makes it challenging to track all possible related names. Consequently, it is good to consider potential phonetic and spelling variations when researching family histories.

Famous people with the name MacMahon/McMahon

  • Vince McMahon: professional wrestling promoter, actor, and the majority owner, chairman and CEO of the WWE professional wrestling promotion.
  • John McMahon: an American government official and former Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency.
  • Collins J. McMahon: American Civil War Medal Of Honor recipient.
  • Edward Duffy McMahon: an Irish-American Church of Ireland clergyman and bishop in the Episcopal Church.
  • Linda McMahon: American professional wrestling magnate and executive, businesswoman, and philanthropist, better known as the former CEO of WWE.
  • James Edward McMahon Jr.: former American football player.
  • Matthew McMahon: American doctor and immunologist.
  • Raymond McMahon: Hong Kong businessman, entrepreneur and philanthropist.
  • Sarah McMahon: Irish rugby union player who plays as a second row or flanker.
  • Kathy McMahon: Canadian ski mountaineer.
  • Darragh MacMahon: Irish Gaelic footballer.
  • Caroline McMahon: Irish fiddle player, guitarist and singer.
  • Joseph McMahon: Irish Healy-Rae politician.
  • J Vernon McMahon: general principal of the United Press, president of the American Newspaper Publishers Association and president of Newsday.
  • John McMahon (soccer): English retired professional soccer player.
  • Kieran McMahon: English footballer.
  • Shane McMahon: American businessman, professional wrestling personality, and occasional referee.

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