This is one of the rarest and one might say, unusual of all Irish surnames. Recording in the spellings of Lomansey, Lemasney, Lamasna, Lomasna, and at least once as Lummasana, local tradition gives it as being of French origins. This is wholly incorrect like so many 'local traditions', the derivation is from the Ancient Gaelic 'lom' meaning 'bone' and 'asna' - a rib! This was a nickname, although quite why anybody should be called 'rib bone' even as a nickname defies logical explanation, at least in the context of Irish surnames. In England such a nickname, had it existed, would have probably described a butcher or surgeon, however early Gaelic names do not follow occupational patterns in anything like the same way. Nethertheless as the famous Irish surname O'Kennedy translates as 'The descendant of the Ugly Head', and this meaning does not seem to have done the Kennedy's any harm, perhaps 'lom asna' follows a similar path. The famous Irish etymologist MacLysaght gives the epi-centre of the surname as Tipperary, but our research clearly indicates that most recordings are to be found in Kilworth, County Cork, or Castle Island, County Kerry. Unfortunately most early Irish records were lost when the Public Records Office was destroyed by the IRA in 1922, but examples taken from surviving church registers include Catherine Lomansey, of Castle Island, on March 8th 1859, and John Lomansey of Kilworth, on September 5th 1865. Daniel Loomasna is recorded at Castle Island on May 10th 1866, but in 1868 is recorded in the spelling of Lummasana! The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Lomasney, which was dated April 10th 1836, married Susan Mackey, at St Martins, Westminster, during the reign of King William 1V, known as 'The sailor king', 1830 - 1837. 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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