The history of Irish last names is a long and complicated one, but there are a few things that are known for sure. For example, it is thought that the first Irish last names were derived from patronymics, or naming conventions that passed down a person's father's first name as their own last name. This practice was common in many cultures throughout history, and it is thought that the Irish adopted it from the Norse people with whom they had interacted. Over time, these patronymic last names began to be passed down through families, becoming more permanent fixtures.
Another theory about the origins of Irish last names is that they were derived from nicknames. It was not uncommon for people in medieval Ireland to be given nicknames based on their physical appearance or personality, and these nicknames often became their last names. This practice was especially common among the lower classes, who did not have access to the same formal naming conventions as the upper classes.
Whatever their origins, Irish last names have evolved over the centuries into the surnames we know today. Many of these surnames are quite common, such as Murphy, Kelly, O'Brien, and Ryan. Others are less common, but no less interesting.
We have assembled the Irish names below for those interested.