What is the origin of the last name Dailey?

The origin of the last name Dailey can be traced back to Ireland. Derived from the Gaelic name Ó Dálaigh or Mac Dálaigh, meaning "son of Dálaigh," it is said to have originated from the word "dáil," which translates to "assembly" or "gathering." The name Dailey is commonly associated with individuals who were descendants of a notable clan, renowned for their skills as poets and historians in ancient Ireland. Over time, the name Dailey has evolved and spread internationally, often with various spellings and adaptations to suit different languages and cultures.

Countries of origin for the last name Dailey

The last name Dailey has its origins in Ireland and Scotland. It is considered to be a variant of the surname O’Dalaigh, which means “descendant of Dalach.” The name Dalach is believed to have derived from the word “dail,” which means “assembly” or “gathering” in Irish Gaelic.

As a patronymic surname, Dailey indicates that the bearers of the name are descendants of a person named Dalach. Patronymic surnames were commonly used in Ireland to denote the father’s name or ancestry. Therefore, those with the surname Dailey can trace their lineage to someone known as Dalach.

The Dailey surname is primarily found in Ireland and Scotland, but it has also spread to other English-speaking countries, including the United States. Irish emigration to the United States in the 19th and 20th centuries contributed to the widespread adoption of the Dailey name in America.

Notable individuals with the surname Dailey include John Charles Dailey, an American actor known for his work in the Western genre, and William Henry Dailey, an American politician who served as the Mayor of San Francisco.

It is worth noting that surnames can undergo variations and changes over time due to factors such as regional dialects, linguistic evolution, and immigration. Therefore, it is possible to find different spellings or adaptations of the last name Dailey.

The etymology of the Dailey surname reveals its connection to the Irish Gaelic language and the concept of familial lineage. The name’s origin in Ireland and Scotland suggests a distinct heritage associated with these regions. However, the widespread presence of the Dailey surname in the United States demonstrates the impact of Irish immigration on the country’s demographics and cultural diversity.

Exploring the meaning and history of the Dailey surname provides a glimpse into the interconnectedness of language, heritage, and human migration. While specific details about individual bearers of the name may remain unknown, the broader context of the name offers insight into the rich tapestry of genealogy and name etymology.

Interesting facts about the last name Dailey

  • The surname Dailey is of Irish origin.
  • It is derived from the Gaelic surname “Ó Dálaigh,” which means “descendant of Dálach.”
  • The name Dálach is believed to stem from the word “dáil” meaning “assembly” or “meeting.”
  • Dailey is a relatively common surname in Ireland and among Irish diaspora communities.
  • The surname has various spellings including Dawley, Daly, Daily, O’Dayley, and O’Daily.
  • Several notable individuals with the surname Dailey have made significant contributions in different fields, including academia, politics, and the arts.
  • The surname Dailey often has different regional pronunciations, depending on local accents and dialects.
  • Dailey is also occasionally used as a given name, although less frequently than as a surname.
  • The Dailey surname can be found in countries with significant Irish immigration, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.
  • Research into surname origins and genealogy suggests that Dailey may have multiple regional origins within Ireland.

Name Rank


There are around 32719 people with the last name Dailey in the US

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