This interesting surname of Scottish origin is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic Mac Bheathain, the prefix "mac" meaning "son of" plus the personal name Beathan, a diminutive of "be(a)tha", "life". The surname dates back to the late 15th Century (see below). Variations in the idiom of the spelling include William McWeane (1539, Kynnarde), Patrick Roy McVeane (1594, Glenlochy). The parish records of Edinburgh include one John McVean who married Isabella McFarlene on the 24th of November 1819. Mary Mc Vane married Andrew Brown on August 20th 1814, and Catherine Mc Vean married Kenneth Mc Lennon on November 24th 1819. One John McVane, a prisoner was captured at Culloden in 1745, by the "Bloody Cumberland". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John M' Wayein, which was dated 1494, Charter witness of Grantully, during the reign of King James 1V of Scotland, 1488 - 1513. 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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