Last name: Farrell

This distinguished Irish surname, with variant spellings O'Farrell, (O) Ferrall, and cognates O'Farrelly and O'Ferrally, is an Anglicized form of the Old Gaelic O Fearghail. The Gaelic prefix "O" indicates "male descendant of", plus the personal byname "Fearghal", composed of the elements "fear", man, and "gal", valour; hence, "descendants" of the man of Valour". This great sept originated in the Leinster Co. of Longford and their chief known as Lord of Annaly resided at Longphuirt Ui Fearghaill (i.e. O'Farrell's fortress) from which the name of the county derives. So important was the sept that much space is accorded to them in the "Annals of the Four Masters". There were two main branches of the O'Farrells, the chiefs of which were distinguished as O'Farrell Boy from "buidhe", yellow or Golden, and O'Farrell Bane from ban "fair" or "white". Several of the family distinguished themselves in the Irish brigade in France, and Sir Thomas Farrell (1827 - 1900), was a noted sculptor many of whose statues adorn the city of Dublin. A Coat of Arms granted to the (O) Farrell family depicts a gold lion rampant on a green shield. On the Crest there is a black greyhound springing from a ducal coronet. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Father Richard O'Farrell, which was dated circa 1615 - 1663, Annaly, Co. Longford, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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 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!

Surname Scroll

Enjoy this name printed onto our colourful scroll, printed in Olde English script. An ideal gift. View Details.
PayPal Acceptance Mark
Surname Scroll


Found census from 1911 my great great great grandad came to shotley bridge consett at some point must have been for work...he was 56 years old and a general labourer in th gas works he was born in 1855 on county tyrone me irish roots!!

Christine Farrell IKA tina
I am the Daughter of Thomas Arthur Farrell Who is also named after his dad, who also had a medal from the first world war.
I am the eldest of the kids
Christine Farrell Born in Middlesbrough general 1951
Arthur Peter Farrell died at the age of 60 in the year 2013
Michael Farrell is a year younger than Peter
Lynne Farrell
Stephen Mark Farrell Born 1959
Christine had a Daughter and son both of which died
Peter has a daughter Angie
Micheal has a son maybe more name mike
Stephen has two sons James and Ben.
I have documents that show my great grandmother could not write. Which motivated my dad to have his own business. My father's dad died when my dad was 10.
Peter lived most of his adult life in Miami
Christine is living her life on the Island of Vancouver her last name is Hurley which is also Irish.
Michael lives around Middlesbrough taking over Dads business
Lynne married well
Stephen worked his tail of and did well...

granddaughter of an o farrell
im related to O Farrell's that originate from ballon co. Carlow .... i dont know anymore than that... my grandfather was patrick o farrell and died in 84.

James Patrick Farrell
Hi, James Farrell here, born in the boro ( middlesbrough) I'm proud to be a Farrell.

Christine Farrell "ika "tine"
The Farrells have a lot to be proud of the inner strength of a grandmother who was so strong and a great cook who was in the first female football club,
her other claim to fame was being one of the first cooks for whitbread bread. she would make it by hand.. she was a wonderful hat maker..

michael reed
hi,ferralls,could any body tell me why my relatives say they didn't know if they were ferralls or denenes my great granddad surname was james denene from county cork in the 1800s,settled in Greenwich,woolwich areas,south London.leave reply

Todd Christopher
Any O'Ferralls in Michigan? Looking for long lost cousins.

O'Farrell Washington
Though I have no connection to the Farrell family, its great to know the origins of my name. I've only known of one other person who has the first name O'Farrell.

Katherine Ilene Farrell Webb
I can't get back in the Farrell line farther than my great grandfather's father. He was Joshua Farrell from Sasfras Md. or Delaware. His mother was Hester or Ester and married a man named Walls after Josh's dad died or left? Great granddad was born about 1854 -1858. After his dad left he was raised by William Bud in that erea. Josh's dad may have come over from Ireland, but I have no record of him. Can any one shed some light on him?

William Farrill
T.o.t.M. to ye.My father is William. His father was William,His father was William,and his father was known as "Butch".When I have a son, his name will be William. I couldn't bring myself to name me daughter Willma or any variation. Erin do nicely since I'm a bastard of her.

Tyler Farrell
Tyler Bradley Farrell here! I had no idea the Farrell family was from Ireland! and a noble family at that! My part of the Farrell family actually came to Canada from the Ukraine. I guess during all the politcal mumbo jumbo in ireland some went to the Ukraine aswell. Proud to be a farrell!

Noel Farrell
Noel Farrell. Meath. Ireland. Hello fellow Farrell's. I've always found us a bit of a rebel bunch myself. Artistically rebellious also. We seem to have scattered to many corners at this stage, so perhaps it is true. I know there is a town in the US called Farrell. Who knows, maybe someday we'll buy it. :)

Keith Farrell
Howya. Im Keith Farrell. My father Kevin was born and raised in Longford. I live in Enniscorthy, Wexford. Hope all my long lost cousins are good out there!

Adding Farrell people Arthur Peter Farrell now in Miami Michael Farrell in Cleveland NE England Stephen Mark Farrell in Redcar Lynne Farrell now married Christine Farrell

john patrick michael farrell
hey carey...a will gladly be your pen pal lol get me added on email..and we can sort that out lol

Carey James Michael Farrell
What would be the best avenue to find my family tree that would give me good quality information. There are many out there but has anyone had good results with a certain one over another. I would like to maybe visit Ireland in my future with my precent family and vistit where my family origin in Ireland. My name is Carey Farrell which my Irish father said my first name is from my grandmothers last name O'Carey and the last name was O'Farrell. Maybe there is someone from Ireland looking for a pen pal from the U.S. that has the same last name?

Olga Baird
I would be very interested to find out about the family of Miss O'Farrell who married an English merchant Deeling some time in the 1730s and settled down with him in Dresden.

Elizabeth Adams
My grandfather was James FARRELLY born 1868 (yes I am pretty old too !) in Middlesborough his father Nicholas Farrelly was born in "Ireland" -I am stuck trying to get back further (his wife was a SMITH from Armagh) !

john patrick michael farrell
iam John Patrck Farrell......from scotland,glasgow. and i was told,that our heritage where o"farrells in ireland,but when we immagrated to scotland,we lost the "o" on the way here farrells....are the bees knees....! plain and simple....and we all love a bevvy/drink... thats our deamon tiochfaidh ar la

um well my Grandma's Mom's last name was Farell so if they are from a noble irish clan than so am i ,right?

Curtis Farrell
i love being a Farrell

Mark Anthony Farrell
Mark Farrell (Not the same mark that has already posted). I have read about the history of my family name and just wondering what are these major differences with all these other names that people are talking about and where does the Farrell name relate to in terms of its history? My Great grandad, Michael Farrell, my grandad Brian Farrell and dad John Farrell all were born and live in Longford and currently own vast land there however i do not understand how this fits into the history of the 'Farrell' name. Would be great if someone could clear it up for me. Thanks

Katherine Ilene Farrell Webb
Yes my dad William Jonathan Farrell always spelled his last name Farrell, but on a report card that his dad signed was George B. Fairrell. It has always puzzled me.

Katherine Ilene Farrell Webb
Oh yes we are in the USA. I have one brother, George William Farrell and he has one son Duane Patrick Farrell and he one son Joel Thomas Farrell.

Chris Farrell
Hey I am a Farrell but according to my family our name is originally spelled Fairell but the census in early 1920's changed it to Farrell has anyone else had this happen?

Darren Farrell
This is awesome! I'm part Irish!!!! Hooray!!!

Deborah Farrell
That's nice, Cliff. I'm happy for you. But unless someone in your family has been doubling up (say, a sister and brother) we all have the same amount of Farrell in us, namely our dads, and their dads ad infinitum. And since the history of Ireland means most of our ancestors wouldn't have wanted to leave Ireland but were transported as political prisoners I don't see the relevance of your statement. Jsmes (?) I would rather be a thoroughly disreputable mick. Funny coincidence, THe future Prince of Wales and King of England Prince William is visiting my hometown tomorrow on a tour of flood, cyclone and earthquake damaged areas (been one hell of a summer). Wondering if the Fenian in me will surface.....

Cliff Farrell of waterford, Eire
None of ye are real Farrells i'm 100% born and bred irish farrell all of ye are just watered down versions of the farrell clan

Carey Farrell
Dude, Relax as we all understand where we come from. As desendants we are very proud of our Irish heritage and seel to continue that chain. I am only half Irish and born in the U.S. so I guess I am watered down. We are all human and that is a fact. I think we are all interested in our Irish Family past and if you are an example of that past then I'm sure it would end right here. I myself am proud of my Irish half as my father is the side I follow and would possibly like to visit Ireland in the origin of my Family surename. My sons name is Collin Patrick Farrell and not named after the Actor.

Gearoid O Fearghail
your attitude is a disgrace, you do NOT represent the true "Farrell" name. Anally is where you are all descended from if you lay claim to the Farrell, Farelly, O Farrell, O Farell, or most other variants including the mis spelled version O Fearghaill. the kingdom of Anally named after King Anal, was proclaimed after the Battle of Clontarf, otherwise known as longphuirt Ui Fearghaill / long fort of the Fearghail's or present day Co Longford smack bang in the middle of the glorious country I lay claim to, born and bred! from someone who knows what he is talking about!

Mel Farrell
Yes maybe so but a Farrell nonetheless

Jsmes R. Farrell
Records of our branch of Farrell's show they were from County Cork. Blacksmiths and the like they were. It took us two generations, in this new country, to weed out all those lousy "Micks". We are all respectable Protestants.

Deborah Farrell
Sorry, that should have been Michael O'Farrell

Deborah Farrell
@Doug My research puts us originally from Cavan, though we are not O'Farrellys. You have to remember that in the feudal era, if surnames were used at all, you used the name of your lord. So a serf might identify himself as O' Fearghail even though he was not blood related but for all intents and purposes the property of the clan. Also, during the transportation era, names were forcibly anglicised in a fairly informal manner. It would be up to the fairly basic clerical skills of whoever what loading the Irish convicts on the boat that morning as to how their name was spelled on the records. And they had scant regard for the illiterate prisoner's sensibilities about his name and ancestry WHen you are talking about over 1000 years of history, it is pretty easy to get the same name popping up at different places. Geneology is hardly an exact science.

Deborah Farrell
@ Mark, THis was quite a recent development though, Mark/Patrick. Irishman Michael Farrell shot the Prince of Wales in the back on Sydney Domain in the 1870-80s (?) He was hanged and my branch of the Farrells did remove the "O" to dissassociate themselves. He was interrogated by Henry Parkes, then Attorney General (?) of New South Wales and was asked to reveal his Fenian co-conspirators. When Farrell did at last yield up a list of names, it ended up he had written down all the names and addresses of the members of parliament of the time. The Prince was wounded but survived. This had been a bit of family mythology that was later confirmed in a book called "The Wearing of the Green" Henry Parkes went on to become the "Father of Federation" at the turn of the century, he co-authored the Australian Constitution with another of my ancestors, Sir Charles Gavin Duffy.

Deborah Farrell
Have been doing some research and the truth differs from the family history (unsurprisingly). Firstly the O'Farrell who was hanged for attempted assasination was Henry James, not Michael (although he could have used the name Michael as it was common to name more than one son after their father at the time) and he shot Albert, the Duke of Edinburgh, second son of Queen Victoria. The Prince Alfred Hospital in Sydney was named in honour of his recovery and H J was hanged.

i guess i should check me spealin afor i post a comment its i heard and took a shot

mark farrell
Gee doug dont take it so seriously..lighten up sport..ok the way u heard it in the past an o farrell tppk a shot at some brit royal and missed,out of shame the farrell branch of the family dropped the o was out of shame for missing not for taking a shot......Patrick

Joshua frawley
we are all decendts of O'Fearghail why cant we just get a grip and work together when we were together we were unstoppable but we speared apart

douglas o'farrelly
nonsense....the o'farrelly surname is from the irish ui' fairchealaigh and is in no way connected to the farrells. the o'farrellys come from cavan where they were the abbots of drumlane. stop cheating people

Steven Farrell
The Farrells are an ancient and noble Irish clan. They have now scattered to other places on the face of the earth like the USA, Canada, Australia, Mexico, New Zealand, Scotland, Wales, Peru and England. As a Farrell I am proud of all of my Farrell relatives in Ireland and worldwide. I also recommend people to read my book "Farrell's Irish Papers."

Scott Farrell
Hi, Scott Farrell here from Vancouver Canada.