If you have one of the following names or one of these name prefixed by O’, then you are a member of an Irish ClanThe Farrell Clan : Farrell, Far(r)el(l)(y), (Farley), Ferrall, Farrill, Ferrall, Fer(r)al(l)(y),   Ferrell, Ferrill, Frawley

The Farrell variation is the most common.    The O’ prefix in front of any of these names is a variant of the Gaelic Ui or Ua, meaning simply ‘grandson’ (see footnote). -  Today it includes any descendant.

Irish surnames are among the oldest in the western world.  The earliest fixed surname in the western world  is O’Clery first recorded in 916.  O’Farrell came into existence in 1014.


More research?  Click here for a fine summary of O’Farrell history.

Longford links:

Longford Leader Newspaper



Photos of Places to see in County Longford

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   Motte (or Moat) Farrell



   Ardagh Center

   Ardagh Town


   Cairn Hill

   Castle Mornyn

   Castle Rea

   Corlea Trackway



Some information has been gleaned from “Place Names of County Longford,” Rev. Joseph MacGivney, 1908





Coat of Arms, likely of the southern sept of the Clan




What is the difference in a prefix?

is in fact more interesting because it is not only the genitive singular of 'ó'; it is also a nominative plural used in historical names and terms: grandsons, descendants. That's how Ruairc as a stand-alone unit comes about: Ruairc = the ÓRuairc's, the collective descendants of Ó Ruairc . The alternative nominative plural in the modern dictionaries, however, is 'óí'. This seems to mean = 'grandchildren and greatgrandchildren of'. So we could refer to ourselves as Ui Ruairc (meaning we are the ÓRuairc's, the descendants of Ó Ruairc) or as Ói Ruairc (the greatgrandchildren of Ruarc).

The difference between Ua and is grammatical. (NB: is not Ui - in the first there is an accent above the í and in the second there is a dot above the i). Ua in the nominative form (meaning grandson) and is the genitive form (meaning grandson of). In the same way that Mac is the nominative case meaning "son" and Mhac is the genitive case, meaning 'son of'. I should qualify all of this by saying my understanding of the declension of Irish nouns is very limited. As far as pronunciation goes I'm not much better practiced, but from what I have determined you might say ú ~ like 'oo' in 'moon', ua ~ like ú followed by short a – so ooa, ~ like ú followed 'ee' as in 'see' and ói ~ like 'ow' in 'know' but no following 'oo' sound as there is in English."

"Ó" and "Ua" have the same meaning. Both mean "Grandson." The person who first called himself "Ó Ruairc" was proclaiming himself "the grandson of Ruarc."

"Ó" does not mean "of the generations of." There is no semantic difference between "Ó" and "Ua."

From http://www.irishgaelictranslator.com/