Mac Dhuinnshléibhe

Rev Patrick Woulfe

Mac DHUINNSHLÉIBHE—IVM'Anlevy, M'Enlievie, M'Enlevie, M'Enleve, M'Inlewe, M'Inlowe, M'Colleve, M'Colley, MacConloy, MacEleavy, MacAleavy, MacAlea, MacAlee, Macleavy, MacClew, MacCloy, Killevy, Killeavy, Levy, Leavy, &c.; a variant of Mac Duinnshléibhe (which see), the initial D of the second part of the surname being now always aspirated. In Scotland, the final e is dropped, and it would appear from the early anglicised forms that this also sometimes happened in Ireland. The MacDunlevys were an ancient and once powerful family in Co. Down. They derive their descent from Donnshléibhe Ó hEochadha, chieftain of Ulidia, who flourished in the 11th century. A remnant of the ancient inhabitants of Ulster, they maintained their independence, though in a greatly circumscribed territory, down to the coming of the English. Their patrimony, which was known as Uladh (Latinised Ulidia), then comprised the present Co. Down and the southern portion of Co. Antrim. The invasion and conquest of Ulidia by John de Courcy, in the year 1177, was the turning point in the history of the clan. Marching his army to Downpatrick, he encountered MacDunlevy, defeated him in battle, though only after a brave resistance, and dispersed his clansmen. From this defeat they never recovered. Though they did not at once cease to exist as a distinct clan, their power was for ever broken, and branches of the family sought new homes in different parts of Ireland, and even in Scotland. In Tyrconnell, some of them became famous as physicians to the O'Donnells. The surname has assumed a great variety of forms in Irish; and the corresponding anglicised forms are very numerous. See Ó Duinnshléibhe, Mac Dhuinnshléibhín; also Ultach, Ultachán, Mac an Ultaigh, Ó hUltacháin, and Mac an Leagha.

Alphabetical Index to Irish Surnames