This interesting surname is of Norman-French locational origin from Cussac in Guienne, an ancient province of south west France, so called from the Gallo-Roman personal name "Cucius" or "Cussius", with the local suffix "-acum", settlement. Introduced into Ireland in the wake of the Anglo-Norman Invasion of 1169 - 1170, the name was first Anglicized as "de Cussac" and "de Cusack", and rendered "de Ciomhsog" in Irish. Cusick, along with other Norman names such as Tobin (originally "St. Aubyn") and Roche (originally "de Roche"), may now be regarded as completely Hibernicized. The first recorded namebearers (see below) were granted lands in Counties Meath and Kildare. The name also appears in 14th Century records of Counties Clare and Roscommon, where it was Gaelicized as "Mac Iosog" and "Ciosog". The Annals of the Four Masters record a battle between the Cusacks and the Barrets in Connacht, circa 1281. Today the name is widespread throughout Ireland, especially in Munster, where it is Anglicized Cusack, Cusick, Cuseck, Cuseick, Kusick, and Kewzick. In 1520, the birth of Patrick Cusack was recorded in Gerrardstown by Navan, County Meath, and on March 24th 1737, Timothy, son of Matt Cusick, was christened in Ballyhay, County Cork. A Coat of Arms granted to the family is a shield divided per pale gold and azure with a fess counterchanged. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Geoffrey and Andre de Cusack, who came to Ireland with King John, which was dated 1211, in "Medieval Records of the Pale", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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.
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