The Phelan Family

Phelan family crest

(Crest No. 132. Plate 14.)

THE Phelan family is descended from Milesius, King of Spain, through the line of his son Heremon. The founder of the family was Fiacha Suidhe, brother of Con Kead Caha, or Con of the Hundred Battles, King of Ireland, A. D. 148. The ancient name was Feallamh, meaning “Philosopher.” The title of the chief was Prince of Decies.

The possessions of the sept were located in the present County of Waterford.

Malachy O’Phelan was Prince of Desi at the period of the Anglo-Norman invasion. Soon after they lost their possessions and rank in the County of Waterford, and their territory was transferred to the Le Poers and other Anglo-Norman settlers, but there still survive several families of the O’Phelans, or Phelans, in the Counties of Waterford, Tipperary, Kilkenny, and Queens County.