This interesting surname is the Anglicized form of the Gaelic name "Mac Thoig", "Mac Thaidhg", meaning son of Tadhg, from the early Irish name "Tadc", "Tadg" usually meaning a poet or philsopher. The name is mainly found in Scotland in Ayrshire and Galloway, but also exists in Arran, Carrick, Kintyre, Lismore and in Dumfriesshire. It is also popular in the County of Galway in Ireland. Mackeeg, Mackag, Mackegg are variants of the name found in Scotland and in Galloway, while in Ulster it exists as Caig and Cuaig. From the same root also the name is found widespread in Ireland as "Mac Teige". Andrew McCaig was a follower of the Earl of Darnley (the second husband of Mary Queen of Scots) and was killed with him in the blowing up of Kirk O'Field in 1567. Helen McKaig married one Jone Robertson of Edinburgh on July 10th 1668, while Archbald McKeag of Kintyre was arrested in 1685 for being a rebel. Sarah, daughter of Malachy and Ann McKeige, was christened at St. Andrew's, Holborn, London on September 11th 1763, while Charlotte, daughter of Michael McKigg, was christened there also on December 8th 1771. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Makkaig, which was dated 1486, a Charter Witness at Wigtown, Scotland, during the reign of King James 111 of Scotland, 1460 - 1488. 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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