Ó Maoilsheachlainn

Rev Patrick Woulfe

Ó MAOILSHEACHLAINN—IO Mulshaghlen, O Melaghlin, (MacLaughlin, MacLoughlin, &c., Ó Loughlan, Ó Loughlin); 'descendant of Maolsheachlainn' (servant of St. Secundinus); the name of a once celebrated Meath family, of the race of Niall of the Nine Hostages, who derive their descent from Maelsheachlainn, or Malachy II, King of Ireland, who was dethroned by Brian Boru and died in the year 1022. The clan-name of the O Melaghlins and their co-relatives was Clann Cholmain. Before the Anglo-Norman invasion they were kings of Meath, but after that period their power greatly declined. Meath was granted to Hugh de Lacy, and for many centuries the O Melaghlens were confined to the barony of Clonlonan in Westmeath. They were, however, one of the five Irish families who had the privilege of using English laws. In the reign of James I they were again stripped of a considerable portion of what remained of their ancient patrimony; and so completely had this ancient and once powerful family been ruined by the confiscations of the 17th century that in the attainders of 1691 there appears but one person of the name, Maolseachlin O Melaghlin, of Lough Mask, Co. Mayo. The name is now everywhere disguised under the anglicised forms of MacLaughlin, MacLoughlin, &c.

Alphabetical Index to Irish Surnames