Recorded in England the spellings of Compsty and Cumpsty, but we think more properly MacComiskey, MacCumiskey or MacCumesky, this is a surname which we believe to be of Irish Gaelic origins. However there are few straight lines with "surnames", but if we are correct and there are few records to enable a conclusive proof to be arrived at, the derivation is from the 13th century "Mac Cumascaigh". This translates as "The son of the follower of the confuser". Who "confused" what we do not know, nor do we know when, but it may refer to a chief who gave his enemies the slip.Gaelic names, and particulary those of Ireland are often based upon nicknames for the first chief of the clan, from whom the later descendants took their name. In this case the clan are most populous in the counties of Longford, Cavan, and Westmeath, but were originally from Longford. Perhaps this change of scenery has something to do with the name? The spellings as Comsty and Cumpsty are a mystery, but given the "arrival" of Irish names in England after the Civil war period of the 17th century, and the thick local dialects of the period combined with inadequate spelling, we think we are corrct about the origin. The early recordings found in London are those of Jacob Cumpsty, at the church of St Mary Whitechapel, on July 27th 1711, and Thomas Comsty, who married Margaret Lawrence at St Ann's Soho, Westminster, on June 4th 1770.
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