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Surname Malloy - Meaning and Origin

all surnames with 'M'

Malloy: What does the surname Malloy mean?

The last name Malloy is of Irish origin, derived from the Gaelic name "Ó Maolmhuaidh," which means "descendant of the noble, or the Great Chief." The name is formed from two elements: "maol," meaning "chief" and "mhuaidh," denoting "noble or proud." It is a popular surname within Ireland, particularly in the County Donegal in the northern part of the country. Like many Irish surnames, Malloy has endured various different spellings throughout history owing to the translation from Gaelic to English, such as Mulloy, Molloy, and Mullee. Therefore, it's an old and proud name with strong connections to leadership and nobility in Ireland's history.

Malloy: Where does the name Malloy come from?

The last name Malloy is of Irish origin. It is derived from the Gaelic word "Mac giolla Luaidh", which means "son of the follower of Saint Lua". Luadh is also thought to mean "grey", which could indicate a person of wisdom. Amid the anglicized versions, many spelling variations include Malloy, Molloy, Mulloy, Maloy, Moloy, and others.

Malloy is a common surname in Ireland, particularly in the County Offaly in the Leinster Province, where the family was established, as well as in Connacht and Munster provinces. The Malloy families were Irish nobles who had large territory in central Ireland before the Anglo-Norman invasion in the 12th century.

Today, Malloy remains a fairly common surname in Ireland, but it has also spread to other English-speaking countries, especially the United States, Canada, Australia, and the UK through Irish immigration. Among these, it is most common in the United States, with the highest concentrations in Pennsylvania, New York, and New England. Some notable people with the surname Malloy include Dannel Malloy, former Governor of Connecticut, and Martin Malloy, an Australian Olympic rower.

Variations of the surname Malloy

The surname Malloy has different variations depending on regional spellings and misinterpretations over the years. Variants include Molloy, Mulloy, O'Molloy, and O'Mulloy. It is derived from the Irish Gaelic name O'Maolmhuaidh, which means "descendant of the noble, great chief".

The name may sometimes appear differently in written records due to phonetic spellings, lack of standardization in spelling, or translation from Gaelic to English. For example, it could have been written as Mallow, Mallue, or Mallough in some historical texts, owing to similar pronunciation.

It's also worth noting that some other Irish surnames could be mistakenly associated with Malloy due to similar spellings or pronunciations, such as Malley, Mahony, or Maloney, although these names have different Gaelic roots and meanings.

Finally, it should be remembered that the use of prefixes like 'O'' can vary, even within a family. Some members might use it, while others might not. Hence, Molloy and O'Molloy, or Malloy and O'Malloy represent the same family origin despite their slightly different appearances.

Famous people with the name Malloy

  • Ed Malloy: American former professional basketball player.
  • Robert Malloy: American public official.
  • Sean Malloy: American author and media critic.
  • Clinton Malloy: American actor, known for starring in the TV series Saturday Night Live.
  • Jack Malloy: American actor and comedian.
  • Richard Malloy: American Jesuit Catholic priest and professor.
  • Dan Malloy: American politician and the 81st Governor of Connecticut from 2011 to 2019.
  • James Malloy: American politician and a Republican member of the West Virginia House of Delegates representing District 38.
  • Timothy Malloy: American film director, screenwriter, actor and producer.
  • Helen Malloy: American film and television actress.
  • Alison Malloy: American producer and former journalist.
  • Edward Malloy: American retired Jesuit priest and the eighth president of the University of Notre Dame from 1987 to 2005.

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