This interesting surname is of Irish origin, and is an Anglicized form of the Gaelic "Mac Uaid", descendant of Uaid, a Gaelic form of the given name Wat. Wat is the oldest short form of the male personal name "Walter", from the Germanic "Waldhar", composed of the elements "wald", rule with "hari", army. Traditionally, Irish family names are taken from the heads of tribes or from some illustrious warrior, and are usually prefixed by "O", grandson, male descendant of, or "M(a)c",, denoting "son of".MacQuade has long been well known in County Monaghan, which is its principal location to-day. As MacQuaid, MacQuade and MacQuode it appears in the Hearth Money Rolls for County Monaghan and County Armagh (1664 - 1667). The surname can be found as M(a)cQuade, M(a)cQuoid, Quad and Quaid, the names without the "M(a)c" prefix being found in County Limerick. Recordings of the surname include: the marriage of Walter Quoid and Margerid Sandy on November 13th 1622 at Bromsberrow, Gloucestershire; the christening of May, daughter of Richard and Margerie Quade on September 12th 1661 at St. Botolph without Aldgate, London; and the marriage of Elizabeth Quade and Denis Shaughnessy on May 22nd 1806 at St. John's, Limerick, County Limerick. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Francis Quoid, which was dated October 20th 1622, marriage to Anne Roberts at Bromsberrow, Gloucestershire, during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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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