I'm trying to understand how the surname Ormond originated.

It is clustered primarily in South West Wales, Dublin and Angus in Scotland.

In Dublin, the surname comes from a place name in East Munster, Urhumhain, but how it came to be found in other places is a complete mystery to me.

The south West Wales branch may simply be an immigration, but I find that explanation makes less sense for Angus. There was an Earldom of Ormond in Angus but the surname predates this as I know of a Mathow Ormond who is recorded on Scotland's people in the 1500s.

In the 1500s and 1600s, the surname is not found anywhere in Scotland outside of Angus.


2 Answers 2


According to the Dictionary of British Surnames by John Titford:

Ormond(e): Irish: Anglicised form of Gaelic O'Ruaidh altered by folk entymology so that it resembles Ormond, a regional name in East Munster. Also found in Lancs and in other parts of England, Scotland and Wales.


My research would indicate that the surname has two sources, one Irish and one Scottish, both apparently derived from placenames. Ormond is an area at the north end of County Tipperary, centred on the town of Nenagh (from the Irish An tAonach Urmhumhan, meaning 'the Ormond Fair'). Urmhumhan or Ormond simply means 'East Munster'. I was the original seat of the Butler family, who were at various times Dukes, Earls or Marquesses of Ormond or Ormonde. In Scotland, Ormond is the name of a hill and a ruined castle near the Village of Avoch in the Black Isle east of Inverness. The meaning of the name is unknown; it might be Pictish for 'high hill'. It gave its name to the Scottish Earls of Ormond, whose family name was Douglas, and to the Marquesses of Ormonde, who were Stewarts. Marquess of Ormonde was a subsidiary title of Charles I of England, who was deposed and beheaded in 1640. The title has not been used since.

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