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Last name origins & meanings:

  1. Scottish: Anglicized form of Gaelic Mac Dhomhnuill, a patronymic from the personal name Domhnall, which is composed of the ancient Celtic elements domno- ‘world’ + val- ‘might’, ‘rule’.
  2. This was the clan name of the Lords of the Isles in medieval Scotland. There was considerable interaction between Gaelic speakers and Norse speakers in the Hebrides, and the name of the founder of the clan, Gaelic Somhairle, English Sorley, is itself of Scandinavian origin, from Old Norse Sumarlíðr “summer traveler” or “summer warrior”. The Macdonalds are the largest of the Scottish clans.
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