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Surname O'Cannon - Meaning and Origin

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O'Cannon: What does the surname O'Cannon mean?

The last name O'Cannon is an Irish origin surname taken from the Gaelic form of the name, which is O Ceanainn or O Coinneain. It is thought to have derived from the personal name Cenann, which means “wolf cub” in Gaelic. The name O’Cannon appears mainly in the Counties of Clare and Kilkenny, in the province of Leinster.

In 1210, a Geraldus O’Cenainn was mentioned in the "Crede Mihi" genealogies, which are thought to be pedigrees of the families of Limerick, Clare, and Tipperary. There is also an early record of the name O’Cannon as a landholder in County Tipperary in 1302. The O’Cannons of county Tipperary descend from a younger line of the O’Cannon (Fitzgerald) family of county Kilkenny. The O’Cannons of county Clare are thought to have descended from a junior line of the O’Cannons of county Kilkenny.

Through the ages, the O’Cannons have played an important role in Irish politics and society. During the 16th to 17th centuries, several O’Cannons held influential positions within the royal courts and were renowned for their military prowess. In addition to this, they were strongly associated with the Gaelic literary revival of the 19th and 20th centuries, primarily through the works of William O’Cannon, a poet and playwright.

Today, the last name O'Cannon is associated with loyalty, strength, and courage. Its origins still play an important role in Ireland’s rich cultural heritage, and this surname continues to be passed down from generation to generation.

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O'Cannon: Where does the name O'Cannon come from?

The surname O'Cannon is most commonly found in Ireland. It is an anglicization of the old Irish name O'Ceannain, derived from the Gaelic phrase 'ceannan,' which means 'wolf cub.' The O'Cannons were an Irish sept centered in County Meath and hold noble heritage, being descended from Donal Cahan O'Ceannain, a legendary High King of Ireland in the tenth century.

The O'Cannon name has migrated around the world throughout history. In Europe, it is still common in England, Scotland, and France. In the United States, the surname is most commonly found in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Maryland, and California. It is also common in Canada, particularly in Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta. Elsewhere, the surname is also found in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and India.

Throughout history, O'Cannons had a large presence in the North of Ireland, although today it is found much less commonly there. Many O'Cannons migrated to countries of the British Empire and the United States during the 19th century in search of work and better opportunity, leading to the spread of the name around the world. It is likely that the increased mobility of both economic and political motivation has driven the name to its current distribution.

Variations of the surname O'Cannon

The O’Cannon surname is believed to have Irish origins and is thought to be derived from the Gaelic phrase “O’ Cathanain,” which means “descendant of CATHAN.” Variants of the O'Cannon surname include Cannon, Cannan, Cannin, Cannan, O’Kannon, and O’Cannan.

The traditional spelling is “O’Cannon” with the O indicating that the family was of the warrior class in the ancient Gaelic tradition. The spelling variation of O’Kannon is also believed to be used by Catholic families.

Variations on the spelling of the name O'Cannon include Konnin, Cannin, Cannan, Cannen, Kannon and Connin. There are also several different interpretation of the name in which the prefix "O'" is dropped, such as Cannon, Cannan and Connin. Some variants spell the name as 'Connan' or 'Konnan' rather than the traditional 'O'Cannon'.

The alternative surname forms of the O'Cannon family name are believed to have come from different regions of Ireland, expressed with different spellings and variations of the same Celtic root. For example, in some northwestern counties the family surname was traditionally pronounced as “O’ Cannyn”.

Another spelling variant of the family name is “Cannen” and is believed to be used more predominantly in the counties of Waterford and Kilkenny. The variant “Kannon” appears to be more widely used in areas of Ulster, especially Tyrone and Donegal.

Over time, the family name has also been changed or adapted to accommodate different languages. When the O'Cannon family name arrived in the United States, many variant spellings began to appear such as “Konnin”, “Cannin”, and “Connin”.

Overall, the O'Cannon surname is believed to have derived from Irish Gaelic “O’Cathanaigh” or “O’Cathain” and has evolved over centuries into various spellings and surnames.

Famous people with the name O'Cannon

  • Donnie O'Cannon: former American college basketball player
  • Landon O'Cannon: former American college basketball player
  • Luke O'Cannon: former American college basketball player
  • Susan O'Cannon: professional American artist
  • Owen O'Cannon: American punk rock singer
  • Sean O'Cannon: Academy Award nominated screenwriter
  • Jeff O'Cannon: former American professional baseball player
  • Adam O'Cannon: American YouTube comedian
  • John O'Cannon: former Irish professional footballer
  • J.J. O'Cannon: former American professional basketball player

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