Meaning and Origin of the Molloy Name
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O'MOLLOY, MULLOY: O'MAOLMHUAIDH MODERN COUNTY: Offaly MEANING: `descendant of Maolmhuadh'. (The name derived from maol `chieftain' and muadh `proud'.) Albin O'Molloy, died 1223, was one of the bishops who officiated at the coronation of King Richard the Lionheart in England in 1189. A less important O'Molloy sept derived its name from O'Maoil Aoidh `descendant of a follower of St Aedh'.
Molloy, along with Mulloy and O'Molloy, is the anglicised version of a number of distinct Irish names. The O Maolmhuaidh, from maolmhuadh meaning 'proud chieftain', were part of the southern Ui Neill, the southern branch of the large tribal grouping claiming descent from Niall of the Nine Hostages, the fifth-century king who supposedly kidnapped St patrick to Ireland. they held power over a large part of what is now Co Offaly, where the surname is still very common. A second family were the O Maoil Aodha, 'descendant of the devoteee of (St) Aodh', from maol, literally 'bald', a reference to the distinctive tonsure sported by early Irish monks. As well as Molloy, this surname has also been anglicised as 'Miley' and 'Millea'. The name arose in east Connacht, in the Roscommon/east Galway region, and remains numerous there today.
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