This unusual surname is of medieval Scottish origin, and has two distinct possible sources, each with its own history and derivation. Firstly, the name may be locational in origin from any of the various places named with the Old Gaelic "garbh, garry", rough, rugged, harsh. These places include: Garryside, a village adjoining Blair-Atholl, in Perthshire; Garrynahine, west of Stornoway, and Garry Bridge, near Pitlochry, Perthshire. Locational surnames were developed when former inhabitants of a place moved to another area, usually to seek work, and were best identified by the name of their birthplace. The second possible source is the male given name Gar(r)y or Garrie, pet forms of Garrard, Garrett, which represent the usual Middle English pronunciation of the Old French "Gerard". This name, appearing as "Gerardus" and "Girardus", in the Domesday Book of 1086, was introduced into England by the Normans, and derives ultimately from the Old Germanic "Gerard, Girard", a compound of the elements "geri, gari", spear, with "hard", hardy, brave, strong. In the modern idiom the name is spelt: Garry, Garrie, Garie and Gary. On November 2nd 1706, Helen Garrie and Archibald Christie were married in Perth, Perthshire. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Gary, who was charged with "aiding the English", which was dated 1552, in the "Records of the Royal burgh of Dundee", during the reign of Queen Mary, known as "Bloody Mary" 1553 - 1558. 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.
© Copyright: Name Origin Research 1980 - 2017