Last name: Doyle
This famous surname is one of the most ancient names of Ireland. Numerically, with some twenty thousand nameholders, it is also one of the most popular, being twelfth in the table of numerical strength of Irish surnames. Originally the Clan Doyle, derived from the pre 10th century Gaelic 'Dhubh-ghall' (The dark stranger) was found mostly in the counties of South-East Leinster, (Wicklow, Wexford and Carlow) and surprisingly it largely remains so today, the name being rare in other regions. There is a traditional belief that the ancestor who gave his name to the family was a descendant of one of the Norsemen who settled in Ireland in pre-Norman times, and this is probably partly true. However if the original nameholders were dark, this suggests that a more likely explanation is that they were either 'Celts' (Olde English fleeing the Anglo-Saxon invaders of Northern England), or possibly Danes, who were much darker than the Norsemen, and who had established themselves in Ulster, the West of Scotland, and the Isle of Man. The surname is not included in the 'Gaelic Genealogies' which supports the view of 'Viking' entry. Be that as it may, the 'Doyle's', the clan is never known as O' Doyle, have made their mark on Irish history, and particularly in the Catholic Church. The Scottish form of Doyle is (Mac) Dougall, and this name was also used in the same way as a byname distinguishing darker-haired Danes from fair-haired Norwegians. The best-known bearer of the name is probably Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, (1859 - 1930), the creator of Sherlock Holmes, whilst an outstanding churchman was J K L Doyle, Bishop of Kildare (1786 - 1834). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of O'Dubhghaill, which was dated 978, in the "Annals of the Four Masters", during the reign of Brian Boru, High King of Ireland, 940 - 1014. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
© Copyright: Name Origin Research www.surnamedb.com 1980 - 2015
Want to dig deeper into your family history? Take a look at our page on building a Family Tree
. Or get scientific and enter the exciting world of Ancestral DNA
i'm descended from the Danish vikings that settled in Leinster, now living in North West England
the 'black foreigner' meaning of doyle doesn't refer to the ethnic make-up of the viking tribe which settled in ireland, The literary meaning of Old Irish and Old Welsh Dub is normally given as "dark" or "black" however Dub can mean "gloomy" or "melancholy" in a moral sense, and has the intensive meaning of "great" or "mighty". in fairness there would have been no black people in ireland in the 900's. I would like to say to the black doyle's that you are probably descended from irish slaves who were brought to the caribbean by the english who in time intermarried with african slaves.
I am the daughter of a Doyle. His name is Keith Doyle. I live in America .
I am currently tracing my family tree. It is difficult though so I have decided not to trace the Doyle side of the family as it would take me forever to get past my grandparents. They were both Doyle's and lived within 3 miles of each other so I have decided to trace my grandmother's mother's lineage instead!
My mother told me the only name that is worse than Doyle when trying to trace your Irish family tree, is Murphy.
I'm a doyle and I'm black. With rh negative blood. So confused
Did anyone else notice how all the people who liked on Facebook did not have the last name Doyle?! Conspiracy!!!
I am a Doyle.My dad is a Doyle
My late father as born in Newbridge Co Kildare ....Michael Doyle....emigrated to London early 1950's ....am a proud West London born with my late mother ancestry from Co Fermanagh ...
Doyle heritage and proud !!
My grandmother Patricia Doyle born to a boxer from Chicago last name Doyle who immigrated to US from Ireland in the 1910's. He lost his gym during the great depression and moved to California. His daughter married Harry Sheldon Dodge whose family was from Pennsylvania and immigrated to the US from Germany in the late 1800's bringing with them many superstitions. My Great Great Grandfather Dodge was a cobbler and faith healer who also played the violin.
I'm from liverpool