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Ballyward, County Tyrone


Ir.  Baile an Bhaird ‘the townland of the bard, or poet’


As is the case for two other Ballywards in Co. Down, it is impossible to say with any degree of certainty if it were to represent an Irish original, such as Baile an Bhaird ‘the townland of the bard, or poet’, or Baile Mhic an Bhaird ‘Mac an Bhaird’s townland’, containing the Gaelic surname Mac an Bhaird, i.e. ‘the son of the bard’. However, the forms Ballynwarde (1614) and Ballineward (1619, 1621) might indicate the presence of the definite article, and the form Baile an Bhaird ‘the townland of the bard, or poet’.

We must also bear in mind that the surname Ward(e) also occurs in English surnames from the early Anglo-Norman period, where it is an occupational name from Middle English ward ‘watchman, guard’, from Old English weard (Hanks, Coates & McClure 2016, s.v. Ward). However, the linguistic evidence appears to point to a Gaelic origin, Baile an Bhaird ‘the townland of the bard, or poet’.



Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
B:warde1609Esch. Co. Map 11 Dunganon pt
B:warde1609Esch. Co. Map 11 pt Dunganon
Ballyward1610CPR Jas I 187a
Ballyware1610CPR Jas I 187a
Ballynwarde1614Inq. Ult. (Tyrone) $2 Jac. I
Ballyward1618CPR Jas I 392b
Ballyware1618CPR Jas I 392b
Ballineward1619Inq. Ult. (Tyrone) $4 Jac. I
Ballinward1619Inq. Ult. (Tyrone) $4 Jac. I
Ballineward1621CPR Jas I 536a
Ballinward1621CPR Jas I 536a
Bollivard1661BSD 201
Bellward1666HMR Tyr. (2) 241
Ballyward1834cMap in poss. S. Crawford (OSNB) 7
~Baile an Bhaird/The Bard''s Town1835cJ O'D (OSNB) 7
~Baile an Bhaird ""Ward''s town""1936TNCT 38
Dungannon Middle
Parish in 1851
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