Index of Names in Irish Annals: Descriptive Bynames: Liathanach

by Mari Elspeth nic Bryan (Kathleen M. O'Brien)

© 2000-2007 by Kathleen M. O'Brien. All rights reserved.
Version 2.1, updated 27 March 2007

Descriptive Bynames: Liathanach




What we know as a set of Irish Annals are manuscripts that were each compiled during a particular time period, usually using older material as sources. For example, when the Annals of the Four Masters were written from 1632 to 1636, they covered events that occurred centuries and millenia before (including legendary history). So, when an entry in this set of annals refers to a person who lived in the year 738, the spelling used for that person's name is very likely not using the spelling that would have been used in 738.

Standard forms of this name (based on spelling systems of different periods) would be:

Frequency & Dates:

Number of men found in the annals with this name: 3
Found in Years: 1070, 1176, 1212, 1233

Research Notes:

[Answering a question about the meaning of Liathanach:]
According to the DIL s.v. liath, it's a variant of liathenech, which is both an adjective "grey-faced" and a noun "grey-faced person". [email from Talan Gwynek - 01 Oct 2001]

[Answering a question about the meaning of Liathanach:]
Dwelly gives as two different things:

masculine noun meaning "hoar-frost" and specified as being an Arran usage

masculine noun meaning "Grey-headed man" (which actually might tie in to the "hoar-frost" meaning, now I think about it) [email from Africa filia Kennoci - 01 Oct 2001]


Further information about the byname Liathanach, may be found in:

The Sources page lists the Annals referenced below. Information about secondary sources is included on that page as well.

Raw Data

In the table below, I have separated individuals with a blank line. That is, when there are multiple entries in the annals that refer to a single person, those entries are grouped together.

Within the list of entries refering to a single person, I have sorted the entries primarily by orthography when it is obvious that what I am seeing is the same entry showing up in multiple annals. The entries that tend to use older spellings are listed first.

NOTE: The Annals referenced below under the code letters A, B, C, E, & F tend to use later spellings than the other Annals. In some cases, the spellings listed in these Annals may not be appropriate for the year referenced in the Annal entry.

In some Gaelic scripts, there is a character that looks approximately like a lowercase f, but without the crossbar. This character (represented by an underscored , e, in the entries below) sometimes represents e and sometimes ea depending upon the context of the text.

[Standardized form of this man's name]
AnnalsEntryContextCitation (formatting preserved)
[Murchad Liathanach h-Úa Concobair]
TT1070.4Murchadh Liathanach h-Úa Concobair, rígdamna Connacht
BM1070.10Murchadh Liathanach, mac Aedha Uí Concobhair
[Cormac Liathanach mac Diarmaid mhic Cormaic Mhic Carrthaig]
MCB1MCB1176.2Diarmaid Mor Mag Carrthaigh do gabhail do Cormac Liatanac, a mac fein ["Diarmaid Mór Mac Carthaigh was captured by Cormac Liathánach, his own son"]
TT1176.10Cormac Liathanach
TT1176.11Cormac Liathanach Mac Carrthaig, rí Desmuman
UU1176.11Diarmoid, mac Cormaic Mheg Carrthaigh, ri Deasmhughan, do gabail la a mac fein, .i., la Cormac Liathan. ["Diarmoid, son of Cormac Mac Carrthaigh, king of Desmond, was taken prisoner by his own son, that is, by Cormac the Gray."]
CM1176.15Diarmait mac Corbmaic Még Carthaigh ri Desmumhan do ghabháil la a mhac fein Corbmac Liathanach & Corbmac do mharbhadh hi f-fiull la a mhuintir budhein & Diarmait do ghabháil a tighearnais iaram. ["Dermot,the son of Cormac Mac Carthy, King of Desmond, was taken prisoner by his own son, Cormac Liathanach; but Cormac was treacherously slain by his own people, and Dermot then re-assumed his lordship."]
MCB1MCB1212.1Cormac Liathanach deiginac mac Cormaic Liathanaig mic Diarmada Cille Badhuna ["The later Cormac Liathánach, son of Cormac Liathánach, son of Diarmaid Cille Badhuna [Mac Carthaigh]"]
[Cormac Liathanach mac Cormaic Liathanaigh mhic Dhiarmaid mhic Cormaic Mhic Carrthaig]
MCB1MCB1212.1Cormac Liathanach deiginac mac Cormaic Liathanaig mic Diarmada Cille Badhuna ["The later Cormac Liathánach, son of Cormac Liathánach, son of Diarmaid Cille Badhuna [Mac Carthaigh]"]

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