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Scottish Gaelic Given Names for Women:
Names of Scottish Gaels from Non-Gaelic Scottish Sources with Irish Gaelic Forms

Draft Edition

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Last updated 25 Nov 2001

This is a draft edition! It is very incomplete! See the first part of this article. You have been warned!

Pre-1600 Scottish Gaelic Evidence

As yet, no pre-1600 Scottish Gaelic examples of the name have been found.

Pre-1600 Latin Language Evidence

In the 13th century, the mother of John Balliol, King of Scotland, had this name. She "appears on her seal as Dervorgille (Macdonald, 1028). On the seal of her charter to Balliol College, Oxford, her name is given as Devorgulla. Fordun spells the name Darworgilla, and in a document of Edward III it appears as Dervorgoyle." (Black, s.n. DERVORGILLA)  She was the daughter of Alan of Galloway who was son to Roland (aka Lochlann), Lord of Galloway. Although she was clearly Scoto-Norman in culture (her mother was a daughter of David, Earl of Huntingdon, grandson of King David I of Scotland, and she was married to an Englishman) the "Scoto" part of that was equally clearly Gaelic. She may have been a Gaelic speaker herself, but even if not at least her father and/or grandfather was. The name was apparently popular among her female antecedents in this family. So at least a generation or two earlier this name was in use by Scottish Gaels, and her use of the name may itself also be an example of use of the name by Scottish Gaels. Dervorgilla died in 1290. (Ashley, 411 chart 23)

"Dervorgoyl, widow of Robert Carnot, rendered homage, 1296. Her seal shows a lady holding a shield in her right hand, and a falcon on her left hand, and Sigill. Derworgoyl d' Crauford (Bain, II, p. 198, 547)." (Black, s.n. DERVORGILLA)  It is unclear whether this woman was a Gael or not.

A precept dated 1271: "... seysinam coram terra de Landes super medietatem bosci de Gleddiswod cum Johanne de Wallibus et domine Heruorgill sponse sue..." — '...sasine on the land of L. of half of the wood of G. [shared] with J. of W. and Lady H., his spouse..." (Gouldesbrough, p. 170)  It is unclear whether this woman was a Gael or not.

Pre-1600 Scots Language Evidence

Pre-1600 Irish Gaelic Evidence

Modern Scottish Gaelic Evidence

Speculative Pre-1600 Scottish Gaelic Form

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