This most interesting surname may derive from two possible origins. Firstly, it may be the Anglicized version of the Gaelic name "O'Duibhidhir", composed of the Gaelic prefix "O", male descendant of, and an unknown personal name containing the Gaelic element "dubh", black. This was the name of a well known Tirconnell sept, where it was Anglicized as O'Deere, Deere and Diver. The name may however be of Anglo-Saxon origin, from the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name "Deora", from "deor", dear, beloved, which was probably applied to a loved one. It became O'Dare as a result of folk etymology, to make it look as if it was of Irish origin, as for example "Odell", an English locational name, became "O'Dell". Early examples of the surname spelling include one Hennrye, son of Brian and Meuill O'Dearee, who was christened on July 2nd 1669 at Derry Cathedral, Templemore, Londonderry; while Roger, son of William and Mary Odare, was christened on July 30th 1797 at St. Paul's, St. Paul's Square, Liverpool; and Adam O'Dare who was christened on December 22nd 1809 at St. Nicholas', Liverpool. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Katharin Odare, which was dated February 5th 1667, marriage to John Morgrave, at St. James', Clerkenwell, London, during the reign of King Charles 11, known as "The Merry Monarch", 1660 - 1685. 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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