Home Branches Is It Mc or Mac? Signatures of Prominant Clansmen
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All the Mish Mash Over Mc & Mac

The variety of spellings of the surname signaturesMacDonald are clearly illustrated by the 11 pages of signatures in The Clan Donald Vol. III, 1904 by A & A MacDonald. These signatures demonstrate that the spelling of the name, including  Mc or Mac, was an individual preference and didn't necessarily indicate with which branch of Clan Donald these prominent members  were associated.  Note the variety of spellings of the Gaelic prefix Mac meaning "son of" even going to the occasional "Mack"! The significance of the raising of the "c" in the spelling Mc is visible in the Gaelic 1467 manuscript available from the National Archives of Scotland. These signatures show that the Mc used by Donald of Harlaw in 1408 was still quite common in 1904.  The raised "c" actually carries over the way it was written in Gaelic MhicDomhnaill.  Significant evidence that Mc was the common abbreviation of Mac is the elevation of the "c".  Note the abbreviated given names below such as Alexr for Alexander and Margtt for Margarette with elevated letters to connote each is an abbreviation.  The vast majority of these signatures include a capitol "D" but some sign with a lower case "d" beginning "donald".

The authors of The Clan Donald (who spelled their name "Macdonald") included 11 pages of signatures of prominent members of Clan Donald. Despite the multiple signatures, written in their own hand with various spellings, the authors of "The Clan Donald" chose to type each & every name "Macdonald" at the bottom of each page!

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