This most interesting surname, with variant spellings Demodey, Dermody etc., is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic name "O' Diarmada", meaning the "male descendant of (O) Difharmait". The personal name is composed of the separative prefix "di", plus "farmat", envy, hence the name apparently means "free from envy". This personal name was borne in Celtic legend by the lover of Grainne and in historical times by Diarmaid MacMurchadha, the 12th Century King of Leinster whose appeal to the English for support led directly to the Anglo-Norman Invasion of Ireland. The name itself is found mainly in County Tipperary and the adjacent counties in Leinster. The personal name is also Anglicized as Darby, Dermot as well as Mac Diarmada (Mac prefix means "son of"). The earliest appearance of the name in London Church Registers is on May 8th 1805 when one Ann Darmody married John Regan at St. Leonards, Shoreditch. Pat, son of John and Margaret Darmody was christened on February 15th 1818 at Cappagh White, County Tipperary. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of O' Duibhdiorma, which was dated circa 1043, in the "Annals of the Four Masters", during the reign of High Kings of Ireland with Opposition, 1022 - 1166. 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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