This is an anglicized form of an Olde Scots Gaelic name Macfhearghuis. The Gaelic prefix 'mac' means 'son (of)' plus the personal name Fearghus or Fergus - a compound of the elements 'fear' - a man and 'gus' - vigour or force. The surname from this source is first recorded in the early half of the 16th century. Seventeenth century spelling variations included: Feres, Ferres, Ferries, Pheres etc. In the modern idiom the name has four spellings: MacFerries, Ferries, Ferris and Ferres. One Katherine M'Ferries, who was accused of witchcraft in Aberdeen (1597), also appears on record as Ferries.The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Andreas McFeris (a King's tenant in Strathdee). which was dated 1527 The Exchequer Rolls of Scotland during the reign of King James V of Scotland 1513-1542. 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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