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Irish Surname - Carroll

The Carroll / O'Carroll surname, of Irish origin, is an Anglicised form of the Gaelic 'O'Cearbhaill', meaning 'warlike champion' or 'valorous in battle'.

The O'Cearbhaills were prominent in the Province of Leinster. There were six separate O'Carroll clans in Ireland, in Counties Kerry, Offaly, Monaghan, Tipperary, Leitrim and Louth. Carrolls of Northern origin descend from the MacCearbhaill clan who were located in Ulster particularly near the town of Derry. There is also a MacCarroll family (anglized to MacCarvill) from the province of Ulster.

In 1014, after constant war and invasion by the Vikings, Brian Boru, High King of Ireland, enlisted a powerful army to fight them in battle at Clontarf. A division of Boru's army, the Eilians, was led by the Prince Cearbhaill of the Carroll race. Brian Boru's principal confessor throughout his reign was Maolsuthian O'Carroll, who never left his side. In 1005 Brian Boru visited Armagh and had O'Carroll write into the famouse 'Book of Armagh'. The O'Carrolls were one of the most prominent dynasties in medieval Ireland, with their territory centered around the modern-day town of Birr in Offaly.

Today, the Caroll surname is found not only in Ireland but also throughout the world, particularly in English-speaking countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

Famous People with the Surname Caroll

Alternate variations of Carroll

O'Carroll, Carrol, Karrel, Carol

  • O'Carroll: This is the original Gaelic form of the name and means "descendant of Cearbhall."
  • Carroll: This is the most common spelling of the name and is the anglicized version of the Gaelic name O'Carroll.
  • Carroll Family Crest / Coat of Arms

    The Coat of Arms most associated with the Carroll name is on a silver shield two red lions combatant supporting a sword erect in pale proper in the dexter chief point a black cross flory, the Crest being on the stump of a tree a falcon rising billed proper charged on the breast with a black cross flory.

    Carroll Family Crest Motto

    "In Fide et in Bello Fortis" - "Strong in faith and war"

    Please Note

    There is often limited information available on a specific coat of arms and motto for an Irish surname. Sometimes there are many variations, sometimes none, we have compiled a representative, but by no means exhaustive, selection. Please visit our Coat of Arms and Motto page for more information.

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