Olaf the Black

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Ian Morrison

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Sep 6, 2001, 10:06:49 PM9/6/01
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I am seeking the source(s) of the name MORRISON and one assertion I have read is that the progenitor is a son of Olaf the Black (son of Godred, king of Man c.1180) and Lauon of Kintyre. The son's name is given as Gillemore (with various spellings), which is supposedly the source of what I am told is the Gaelic name for Morrison, MacGillemhoire.

I have read a lot about the Kings of Man but have seen no mention of a Gillemore (servant of Mary?) Can anyone confirm that this marriage, which was annulled, did produce a son? Can anyone propose another source for the Morrisons of the Western Isles?

Ian Morrison

Todd A. Farmerie

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Sep 6, 2001, 11:53:34 PM9/6/01
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Ian Morrison wrote:
>
> I am seeking the source(s) of the name MORRISON and one assertion I have read is that the progenitor is a son of Olaf the Black (son of Godred, king of Man c.1180) and Lauon of Kintyre. The son's name is given as Gillemore (with various spellings), which is supposedly the source of what I am told is the Gaelic name for Morrison, MacGillemhoire.
>
> I have read a lot about the Kings of Man but have seen no mention of a Gillemore (servant of Mary?) Can anyone confirm that this marriage, which was annulled, did produce a son? Can anyone propose another source for the Morrisons of the Western Isles?
>

The name Morrison means nothing more than "son of Maurice", and
thus there is no one family, and no one family origin - all they
have in common is that they had an ancestor named Maurice from
whome they took their name. All of these connections to
Gillemore and Man could possible (but unlikely) apply to _some_
Morrisons, but it cannot be assumed to apply to any particular
Morrison, unless you can trace it back, generation by generation,
to that point.

taf

Stewart Baldwin

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Sep 7, 2001, 1:57:02 AM9/7/01
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On 6 Sep 2001 20:06:49 -0600, ianmo...@msn.com (Ian Morrison)
wrote:

First, any claim that the progenitor of a family was a son of a king
is a "red flag" of major proportions, and should be received with
great skepticism. This is especially the case with common names like
Morrison, for which the individuals of that name don't generally trace
back to a single origin (as Todd has already pointed out).

The early records I have seen certainly show no son of Olaf named
Gillemore (or similar). This person, if he existed at all, would have
been a brother of the last king of Man of the native dynasty (and also
a brother of two earlier kings of Man), but I have researched these
individuals in great detail, and have never seen such a brother in any
source, or any indication of a family named Morrison that related to
these last kings of the native dynasty.

Stewart Baldwin

Renia

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Sep 7, 2001, 5:22:24 AM9/7/01
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The origin of the clan name Morrison, as it says in Scottish Clan And
Family Encyclopedia "highlights the problems created by the anglicistion
of Gaelic names."

The encyclopedia goes on to say that "there are three quite distinct
origins - two Hebridean and one mainland."

The O'Muirgheasains (means 'sea valour') of County Donegal, were bards
and keepers of the holy relics of St Columcille at Clonmany. A branch is
supposed to have gone to Habost on the nort-east coast of Lewis.

Or another story is Ghille Mhuire ('servant of the Virgin Mary') was
supposed to have survived a shipwreck by floating on a piece of
driftwood, commemorated in the clan's plant badge and that this servant
of Mary was was a natural son of King Olav, and thus a half-brother of
Leod, progenotor of the Macleods. This son is said to have come ashore
and married the heiress of the Gows, or Clan Igaa, who held Pabbay in
the Sound of Harris, who were a clan of noted armourers. Their
descendants were known as Mhic 'ille' Mhuire.

The Morrisons were certainly established in Lewis by 1346, when Cedhain,
son of MacIain of Ardnamurchan married the heiress of the Morrisons of
Lewis, "but whether this was a descendant of Ghille Mhuire or
O'Muirghesain is disputed". He had to take his wife's name which "as he
was a descendant of the great Somerled, King of the Isles, suggests
that she was of equal rank, and probably a descendant of King Olav."

The mainland Morrisons (their senior representatives were the Morrisons
of Bognie in Aberdeenshire) "seem to have to connection whatseover with
their Hebridean namesakes". Maurice was a Norman name derieved from the
Latin 'Maucicius' meaning 'dark-skinned' or 'swarthy'. Morrison thus
means son of Maurice, as Todd has said.

The clan Morrison society was not established until the twentieth
century, with the chiefship vested in the Morrisos of Ruchdi.

Renia

Heather M

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Nov 4, 2022, 10:56:40 PM11/4/22
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Clan Morrison Society has been working on a DNA project for quite some time. I first came across it about ten years ago. Anyway, if you go over to their website they have forums and information regarding participation. They've been using DNA and genealogy records(records of birth, marriage, immigration, census, etc. ) to look at who migrated where and who's related to whom. They were actually able to fill in the rest of the puzzle pieces for me once I found which group my blood relatives belong to: https://clanmorrison.net/ They have been able to confirm Norse heritage for some of us but I wouldn't take that to mean decended from the deligitimized son of a historical figure. (I'll change my mind if they manage to prove it via DNA from his remains. I just doubt there are any remains to do that with.) I mean, the other side's "history" (Donnachaidh) reads like an episode of GOT too... which makes me suspect they all exaggerate. Now, I don't doubt that someone named Gille Mhoire is the origin of the clan name, just that he had anything to do with a king.
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