Recorded in many spellings including MacIan, MacAne, MacEan, MacCane, MacKean, MacKeand, MacKane, MacKaine, and short forms commencing 'Mc' as well as many without a Mac or Mc prefix at all, this is a Gaelic Scottish clan surname which is also widely recorded in Ireland. It originates from the pre 13th century Mac Iain, meaning 'The son of John'. This personal name in its various forms such as Ian, Iain, Sean and Shaun, is more popular in the Highlands than even Donald or Donal. 'John' originally from the Hebrew 'Yochan' meaning 'God has blessed me with a son' , was little used except by clerics inn the first miillenium.Later it was an 'import' from the Holy Land, at the time of the twelve Great Crusades to free Jerusalem from the Muslims. The most famous of these was the one lead by Richard, the Lionheart, King of England, in 1199 which however lead to his death. Subsequently returning Knight Templars and other Christian pilgrims, started to give their children Biblical and Grecian names both in honour of the fathers visit, and because it was 'politically correct' at a time of the second Christian revival, so to do. Throughout Europe 'John' in all its hundreds of forms became the most popular of all such names, and rapidly replaced earlier Anglo-Saxon, French, German and Viking-Scandanavian names. In this case it is said that the MacIans of Arnamurchan originate from Eoin, the son of Angus Mor, lord of the Isles in the 11th century, with Sir Donald MacIan paying homage to the Interregnum Government of Scotland in 1296. Other recordings include Nigel McCane of Islay in 1506, Robert McKeane, recorded as being a 'citizen of Edinburgh in 1661', and Robert M'Keand, the burgess of Kircudbright in 1682.
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