Etymological & Other Updates

Owing to the real wealth of Irish and Scottish Gaelic resources (including Old Irish) now available online, I have been able to complete the etymological research into the origins of both elements in the name. The History page has been significantly updated with this and other information (especially in footnotes 1 and 16, for those who really want to dig into the details). In short, it can now be confirmed pretty solidly that Cuindlis/Cuindleas does in fact mean ‘head of the enclosure’ and that it probably referred to a fortified dwelling.

In related news, see the Notables and Namesakes page for a new entry on Caherconlish, a related place-name in Ireland that means ‘fort of the head[land] of the enclosure’. There is also a new entry there about Lt.-Col. Patrick Dalmahoy McCandlish of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders regiment. Two ladies were also fairly recently added, both of them authors: Margaret Ann McCandless (Fulton), and Louise Candlish.

Two other pages received significant updates: Heraldry, and Cuindlis Name Variants.

I made signs and leaflets, and took them to the Highland games event in Pleasanton, California (2 and 3 September 2023). It was not a full “clan tent”, but I was hosted by Clans Murray and Scott, who were very accomodating. The sign did attract some attention; one vistor even took photos of it and was excited to find something about his ancestral name. And 8 of the leaflets were taken, which is actually more than I expected given the rarity of the name (especially on the US West Coast). Such an outing would be much more successful in Ayrshire and Galloway, Ulster, and the US East Coast and eastern South, where McCandless, McCandlish, and related names are more concentrated. This was basically a dry run to make sure that the signs and leaflets I designed would print well.

Last but not least, I’ve added a “Join Us!” page, all about the plans for forming a family society/association, and how people can get involved. This ties in with a new Facebook group at which I am mirroring at lot of this website’s content, for people who prefer that venue:

By Stanton McCandlish

I am the site administrator and presently its principal writer/researcher. Based in Oakland, California (though I spent my early childhood in the UK, and have also lived in five US states, as well as Ontario, Canada), I am an IT consultant, book author, and genealogist, I've been doing a one-name study of Cuindlis-derived names like McCandlish, McCanless, and Conlisk since the 1990s. I also designed the McCandlish tartans, back in 1992 (with consultation from one of the then-living tartan experts). I have a degree in cultural anthropology and linguistics. I'm learning Scottish Gaelic and previously studied Irish Gaelic a bit, though am not fluent in either yet. On the side, I'm also something of a tartan and Highland-dress scholar, and have amassed most of the quality material published on the subject, primarily for overhauling Wikipedia's coverage of the subject. I started with the article "Tartan", which I re-did from the ground up and will next be splitting into sub-articles. Other family lines I'm researching including Skinner, Foster, Bomar, Ward, and Scott, though only particular lineages (not as broad one-name studies).


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