This interesting surname is of Scottish origin, and is the Anglicization of the Gaelic patronymic "Mac C(h)ardaidh", translating as "son of the sloe", and deriving from the older Gaelic word "cardi". The "h" is intrusive and silent in the vernacular. The home county of the Mac Hardies is the Highlands of Aberdeenshire, and the immediate neighbourhood north and south; the clan have long been numerous and influential. The Strathdon branch counted themselves of the Clan Chattan and followed Mac Intosh as their chief. It is also thought that the name came from Pictish "Gartnaigh", which developed into Mac Cardney or Mac Carday, and ultimately, before 1587, to Mac Hardy. The following examples illustrate the name development: John Mackhardie (Crathinqaird, 1633); Donald Mc Qhardies (officer of the baron-bailies court of Braemar, 1676); and John M'Ardie (1696). Among the recordings of the name in Aberdeenshire are those of the christening of John McHardy on September 19th 1738, at St. Andrew's, Braemar, and the marriage of William McHardy and Jannet Thomson at Strathdon, on September 2nd 1753. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas McChardy, which was dated 1560, at Brakmar, Scotland, during the reign of Queen Mary, "Queen of Scots", 1542 - 1567. 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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