This most interesting surname is one of the variants of an Anglicized form of surnames derived from either of the Gaelic personal names "O'Damhain", composed of the Gaelic prefix "O", male descendant of", and "Damhan" meaning "Fawn"; or "O'Dubhain", composed of the Gaelic prefix "O", as above and "Dubhain", a personal name from "dubh", black. The former source also gives rise to the surnames Devin, O'Daimhin and avin (a County Tipperary name), while surnames from the latter personal name include O'Doy(a)ne, O'Downe, (O)Duan(e), Doane and Dewan. Dwane is an Anglicized form found in West Munster, while Downes and Duane are chiefly associated with Thomond and Connacht, respectively. The name Devine is chiefly found today in counties Tyrone and Fermanagh, where up to the 15th Century the chief of this sept was Lord of Tirkennedy in County Fermanagh. Recordings from Irish Church Registers include: the christening of Elizabeth, daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Dowin, on October 11th 1724, at St. Peter and St. Kevin, Dublin; the marriage of Elizabeth Dwane and Robert Leone on January 20th 1846, at Caher, County Tipperary; and the christening of John Dewane on June 24th 1864, at Mallow, County Cork. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of O'Devine (no known personal name), which was dated 1066, in the "Annals of the Four Masters", during the reign of Donough O'Brian, High King of Ireland, 1058 - 1072. 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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