This is an ancient Irish patronymic surname. Recorded in the spellings of Tynan, and more rarely Tinan and Tynnan, the sept originated in the region of County Leix and County Kilkenny where they basically remain today. The famous irish etymologist Edward MacLysaght described them as 'numerous' in those counties and well recorded there in the original census of 1659. Be that as it may the name spelling was formerly and more correctly O'Teynane, a derivation of the ancient Gaelic O'Teimhneain'. The precise meaning of the surname is unclear, but it probably has some religious connotation, and appears to describe the son of the descendant of a follower of a holy man, but it has to be said that trying to pin precise meanings on names which have undergone at least two langauge changes and fifteen hundred years of development, is fraught with improbabilities.What is certain is that in 1665 at least eleven families of Tynan were landowners in County Tipperary of sufficient status to be recorded in the Hearth Tax rolls of that year. Amongst the lists of emigrants who fled Ireland at the height of the Potato Famine in 1846, was Owen Tynan aged 19. He is listed as arriving in New York on the ship 'Europe' which left Liverpool on June 15th 1846. Sadly virtually all early recordings in Ireland were lost in 1992, when the IRA occupied and destroyed the Public Records Office in Dublin, and the ancient registers of the country were burnt in the ensuing fire.Surviving recordings include Mary Tynan who married William Mcdermot at Dublin, on April 19th 1804, and Patrick Tynan of Castlecomer, County Kilkenny on July 5th 1868. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Clift Tounon, which was dated April 1st 1756, who married at Limerick, County Limerick, during the reign of King George 11 of England, 1727 - 1760. 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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