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Derrymacash, County Armagh


Ir. Doire Mhic Cais / Mhic Coise “McCash’s or McCosh’s oak wood”


This lough-shore townland is the most easterly in Montiaghs parish, and contains the promontory, formerly an island, called Rathlin.  All the evidence for the townland name, Derryvicasse in 1610 (CPR Jas I 165a), indicates that it contains a surname or family name, although the sources give no evidence for the surname in the area.  Residents in the late 17thcentury included several McCanns.

McCash is not now found in Northern Ireland, and the name McCosh in northern Antrim probably arrived from Scotland.  (It has a Gaelic origin as Mac Coise, literally ‘son of foot’, meaning ‘messenger’).  On the eastern shore of Lough Neagh there are some examples of the surname Cash, which could be from Mac or Ó Cais, based on the adjective cas ‘curly-haired’ used as a personal name.  There is a rare surname McCashin found mainly in Co. Down (as in Ballymacashen townland in Killinchy parish), and McCassye was a ‘principall Irish name’ in Monaghan in 1659 (Census 160).  Whatever the origin, there are other similar place-names in the Lough Neagh area.  In the south of Co. Antrim is the townland of Ballymacoss in Derryaghy parish.  There is also Clonmacash townland in north-west Co. Armagh in Tartaraghan, and a similar surname was added to older references to Legmore townland in Moira (PNI vi 289).  Seacash townland in Killead parish seems to contain Cas as a personal name.


McKay, P and Muhr, K. 'Lough Neagh Places: Their names and origins' (2007:66)

Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
Derrinecoase1609Esch. Co. Map 5.29
Derryvicasse 1 + 5th bal (Ballynemony)1610CPR Jas I 165a
Derryvicasse (Brownlow est)1629Pat. Car. I (OSNB) A17
td Derymacash1657Inq. Arm. (Paterson) 235
Derryvicash1661BSD 53
Derryvycasse 1 & 3rd b''bo (B''mony)1661Inq. Ult. (Armagh) $7 Car. II
Derymccasse1664HMR Arm. (PRONI) 36
Derrivicash1667Brownlow LB 36,44,85
qr of Derrivicash1672Mooney 1950c 272
Derryma Cash1760Rocque's Map
Derrymacash1835Ret. Tds Armstrong's Sur. (OSNB) A17
~Doire Mhic Caise ""MacCash''s oakwood""1835J O'D (OSNB) A17
Derryvicafoe1837OSM vol. 1 pp 90-91
Derryvicasse prons [Derryma-''cash]1837OSM vol. 1 p. 93
Rathlin Is pt td Derryvicafoe1837OSM vol.1 pp 89, 91
~Doire Mhic Chais1950cMooney 1950c 277
Oneilland East
Parish in 1851
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