This interesting and unusual surname is an anglicized form of the Old Gaelic O Muineog. The Gaelic prefix "O" indicates "male descendant of", plus the personal byname Muineog, believed to be a diminutive of "Manach", monk. This great sept originated in East County Clare and the townland of Ballyminogue in the parish of Tuamgraney marks the centre of its location. The prefix "bally" is from the Gaelic "baile", a town. The name is also found on the other side of Lough Derg, in the barony of Lower Ormond, County Tipperary, where several families were resident when Petty's "census" of 1659 was taken.The first recorded namebearer, (see below), was described as a "tower of the piety of Erin", and in 1313 one, Walter O'Mynok, witness, appears in the Court Rolls of Limerick. Occasionally, the surname Mannix, also deriving from "manach", a monk, is used as a synonym for Minogue in East Clare, and the variant spelling Minnock is particularly widespread in County Offaly. On April 19th 1864 the birth of one, Catherine Minogue was recorded in Annacarriga, Co. Clare. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Clerichen O Muineoc, Bishop of Leighin, County Carlow, which was dated 1050, the Annals of Lough Ce, during the reign of High Kings of Ireland "with opposition", 1022 - 1166. 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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