This interesting surname, found in Scotland and Ireland, derives according to one source from the Anglicized version of the Gaelic name "Mac Muireadhaigh", the son of Muireadhach, a Gaelic personal name, from "muir", sea. The name is widespread in the Galloway region of Scotland, and in Ireland is frequently found in County Donegal. The Irish surname "O Muireadhaigh", translating as "the male descendant of" Muireadhach, has been Anglicized as Murray. The surname has also been Anglicized as MacMorrow and MacMorry.A considerable number of namebearers now living in Ireland were of Scottish extraction, especially those in Ulster. One Sir Fergus M'Murre was Chaplain in Glasgow in 1553, according to the Abstracts of protocols of the town clerks of Glasgow, while Moldone McMurrye in Bute, Scotland had sasine (document proving possession of property) in 1560, according to the Exchequer Rolls of Scotland, 1264 - 1600. Elizabeth, daughter of Robert and Jean McMurray, was christened at Edinburgh, on March 15th 1731. The name was also recorded as McKlemuray and McMurray in Scotland. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Fergus and John M'Mury, mentioned in the will of Egidia Blair, Lady Row, which was dated 1530, in "Crossraguel Abbey Charters", 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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