This very interesting surname is of Irish origins. It is from the Gaelic MacMaicin and O' Maicin, which translates as "The son of the youthful one", or "The descendant or grandson of the youthful one". Who this "Youthful one" was is unknown, but the surname occurs in the province of Munster as O'Maken, O'Mackane, and O'Mackine, from as early as the year 1314 in the Justiciary Rolls of the region. However, this name is not confined to Munster as one Leighlin Omakin is mentioned in an official report of 1360 in the province of Connacht, whilst the books known as the Annals of the Four Masters, record the death of Thomas O'Maicin, the bishop of Leyney even earlier in 1265. There are two distinct septs of Macken, one prefixed with 'O' and the other 'mac', but these septs were often confused when the prefix was dropped. Amongst the recordings in Ireland is the christening of Margaret Elizabeth Macklin on August 6th 1867, in Dublin, whilst Lance Macklin was a famous racing driver in the 1950's. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Maeilbrighde O'Maicin. This was dated 1225, in the Annals of Loch Ce, Ireland. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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