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PostPosted: Sun 08 Sep 2019 3:44 pm 
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Dia dhuit,

My name is Br. Brendan and I am an Irish-American monk. I have just begun to learn Gaeilge and I've found it a fascinating and unique language! I'm very happy to have found this forum as well, although the users seem very advanced. I hope my posts are acceptable in their simplicity. :oops:

My question is this: My surname is TUMILTY and I've always wondered at the etymology of this name. I haven't had much luck researching its origin, but I did find this piece of information:

Quote:
(Celtic) Big, Bulky [Irish Tomaltach-filial form Mac Tomaltaigh, nepotic form O' Tomaltaigh; tomalt, size, bulk + the pers. suff. -ach] Tomaltach, tighearna Cianachta Glinne Geimhin, décc.
(Tumilty, lord of Cianachta, etc., died).— Annals of the Four Masters, A.D. 752.
According to Concannon, 'Mion-Chomh- rádh’, p. 129, ‘Thomas’ has been used to replace the Irish ‘Tomaltach’.
— Surnames of the United Kingdom (1912) by Henry Harrison


I looked in my Irish dictionary and found this:

Quote:
toirtiúil, a2. Large-sized, bulky.


I was unable to find an entry for the word, "tomalt" that means 'size' or 'bulk'. Is this a different dialect, or perhaps an obsolete word? Now, I did find this entry in the same dictionary:

Quote:
tomhail, v.t. & i. Eat, consume.


Perhaps my ancestors were big eaters and thus became quite large? :dhera:

Any input on this question would be appreciated!

Speaking of names, I was given the name "Brendan" when I joined this monastery because of my Irish heritage. I noticed the name is spelled "Breandán" in Irish. I will use this spelling whenever I can! :D

Go raibh maith agaibh!


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PostPosted: Sun 08 Sep 2019 4:32 pm 
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There are two surnames: Mac Tomaltaigh and Ó Tomaltaigh,
both referring to the first name Tomaltach. (anglicized also Timothy, latinized Tomaltachus, Tumultachus)

tomhailt, consumption (eating/drinking), has a lenited m. It is pronounced like túilt ("toolch")
This m has been lenited probably for at least 1000 years (though spellt tomailt in Old Irish)
But Tomaltach obviously kept an unlenited m until now.
So, they might not be related.

Perhaps it is related to French tumult, Latin tumultus :dhera:


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PostPosted: Mon 09 Sep 2019 9:40 pm 
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MacLysaght, in his Surnames of Ireland, says the following about the name (with the same Irish forms as were given by Labhrás gave above):

Quote:
Mac Tomaltaigh, also Ó Tomaltaigh (perhaps from tomaltach, bulky). The Connacht sept of this name is now almost extinct, except in the barony of Moycarn, Roscommon; there remains the sept of Oriel, especially the part of it where Cos. Monaghan, Down, and Louth meet.

_________________
I'm not a native (or entirely fluent) speaker, so be sure to wait for confirmations/corrections, especially for tattoos.


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PostPosted: Wed 11 Sep 2019 12:45 am 
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Very interesting comments... yes, I have heard of lenition and am just beginning to understand what it is. I also understand that Irish spelling was standardized in the past 100 (?) years. I wonder if many of these names keep their old spelling and pronunciation in spite of general phonetic changes in the language as Labhrás was alluding to...?

But I like the orthography of TOMALTAIGH. Maybe I'll use it more... ;) This word for 'bulky' ("tomaltach") is still a mystery, as far as finding a modern dictionary reference to it. If anyone happens to see it.... enlighten us!

~PAX


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PostPosted: Wed 11 Sep 2019 2:30 pm 
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br.brendan wrote:
But I like the orthography of TOMALTAIGH. Maybe I'll use it more... ;)


(Mac/Ó) Tomaltaigh has ever been the only correct spelling in Irish.
it hasn't changed.
Tomaltaigh is genitive of Tomaltach

Quote:
This word for 'bulky' ("tomaltach") is still a mystery, as far as finding a modern dictionary reference to it. If anyone happens to see it.... enlighten us!

~PAX


It isn't in eDIL (http://www.dil.ie/) or Corpas Stairiúil na Gaeilge (http://corpas.ria.ie/) either (except as a personal name). So, I suppose it never was used as an adjective in the sense of "bulky". I doubt this meaning.


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PostPosted: Wed 11 Sep 2019 7:05 pm 
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Thank you for the other dictionary links! I'll keep them handy.


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