Recorded as Caukill, Corkell, Corkill, Corkhill, and McCorkell, McQuorkell, McOrkil and originally in the 12th century as Mac Thor Kettill, later MacThorkell, and later still as MacCorkyll, MacCorkill, this is and was a Manx surname from the Isle of Man. It contains elements of both Norse-Viking and Gaelic but derives ultimately from the elements 'Thor' - the Viking god of war, and 'cetel' - a helmet or cauldron. The Gaelic form was originally 'Mac Thorcaill', although there are no known recordings to absolutely prove this spelling.In the Isle of Man the name is generally now recorded as 'Corkhill' whilst in Scotland and Northern Ireland it has been found in spellings such as McQuorkell, McCorkell, McOrkil, as well as Caukill, Corkill and Corkhill. The Scottish McCorkell's are considered part of the Clan Gunn, although the reasoning behind this is not clear. In the Isle of Man the earliest surving and provable recording is probably that of Teag MacCorkyll in the year 1408, and as Corkill in the year 1502. An interesting recording is that of Biddy McCorkell, aged only eight, and her sister Margaret, aged seventeen, who left Ireland on the ship 'Marion of Londonderry', on April 12th 1847, bound for New York during the Irish Potato Famine. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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