Friday, February 2, 2018

52 Ancestors: Week 6: Names

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks was created by Amy Johnson Crow and is a series of weekly blogging prompts to inspire genealogists and family historians to write about an ancestor and then share it online. The theme for Week 6 is "Names".

Today's blog post is about the old Irish name "Honora" which was the name of my 4th great-grandmother Honora (O'Leary) Moynahan.
The Old Irish Name: Honora

The name "Honora" was once common in Ireland.

Source: Photocopy of Irish Names
Source: Photocopy of Irish Names

Gaelic Names and Their Anglicized Versions

Census records, passenger lists, and parish records were either written in English or Latin (or in the case of Detroit and Essex county, Ontario, parish records were written in french). Never in Irish. The surname ALWAYS retains the English/French/Latin spelling. And so you see Honora written as Nora, Norah, Hannah, Anna ( even Jane, Jean, Joan!)

My 4th great-grandmother Honora (O'Leary) Moynahan on the 1851 census for Sandwich, Ontario (C-11720)

 Honora (O'Leary) Moynahan is found on the following records with many variations for her name:
  • 1833: Detroit marriage record for her son Denis Moynahan she is recorded as "Nory Lery" "Nancy Leary"
  • 1851: On the census for Sandwich Township (C-11720) she is recorded as "Honora"
  • 1860:  Matthew Moynahan's 1860 Will #915 she is recorded as "Honora"
  • 1861:On the census with her son Timothy she is recorded as a "Widow" named "Ann"
Name Variations and Nicknames:

From Old Irish Names: Varieties and synonymes of surnames and christian names in Ireland

From Irelandxo, here are some additional name variants for Honora:
  • Hannah, Hanna  =  Honora, Johanna, Anna
  • Honor, Honny, Onny, Noey, Norah  =  Honora, Honoria
  • Noey, Norah, Onny  =  Honora, Honoria

An Irish ancestor’s first name might be the magic key to unlock the family’s story: their religion, economic status, place of origin in Ireland.

My 4th great-grandmother is my only ancestor with the name "Honora". It is a beautiful name and I hope to learn more about her life in Ireland at some point in the future.

 More LINKS About Irish Names

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