Tuesday, 12 April 2011

J is for Jeremiah

It is fitting that my grandparents were Hanora and Jeremiah.  Both names are somewhat peculiar to West Cork and both have a few variations.

The Jeremiahs in my family have been known as Jerh or Jerry.  You will occasionally find Jer.  And when I was in Ireland in 1989, I met a colourful fellow known by the short form Miah. 

I like the idea of naming a girl Jeremiah and calling her Miah for short.  Wouldn't that be cool?  My Sweetie didn't think so.

Did you know that Dermot is a form of Jeremiah?  From what I've read, there was a period of time when the Catholic Church operating in Ireland tried to Latinize names.  You'll see this also in some old Sault Ste. Marie Catholic records where the Italian Marys I know were baptized Maria.  It's less obvious to Latinize Irish Gaelic names. Apparently, Con and Connor became Cornelius.  And Dermot and Diarmaid became Jeremiah.  Another form of Dermot, and hence Jeremiah, is Darby.  We refer to our original Moynihan ancestor (as far back as we have been able to take the tree) as Big Darby Mynehane.  You'll find him called Jeremiah Mynehane on some Ancestry trees online.

One last thing.  In case you don't yet have the song running through your head, let me share what inspired this post:  "Jeremiah was a Bullfrog."

No he wasn't, he was my ancestor.


  1. Very interesting. I never knew about the names being Latinized. I'm stopping by from the A to Z challenge and I look forward to reading more from you.

  2. That is so interesting! I love finding out where names come from. By the way, the Jeremiah/Miah thing gave me an idea...


  3. Miah. cool.
    hey...how come yesterdays blog was posted yesterday but I couldn't see it yesterday?

  4. Hmm, Sam, I dunno. I could see it.