What is the origin of the last name Mcknight?

The last name McKnight is of Scottish origin, specifically derived from the Gaelic language. It is a locational surname, indicating that the original bearers resided near a specific place. "Mc" denotes "son of" in Gaelic, and "knight" refers to a knight or a servant. Therefore, McKnight signifies the descendant of someone associated with a knight or a servant, possibly an indication of their status or occupation in medieval Scotland.

Countries of origin for the last name Mcknight

The last name McKnight is of Scottish and Irish origin. It is a variant spelling of the Scottish surname MacKnight or the Irish surname Mac Cnáimhín. The name is derived from the Gaelic word “cnáimh” which means “bone” or “skull”.

The spelling variation “Mc” indicates “son of”, thus the name McKnight can be interpreted as “son of Cnáimhín”. The prefix “Mac” or “Mc” is commonly found in Gaelic surnames and is used to denote paternal lineage.

The surname McKnight is most frequently found in Scotland and Northern Ireland, reflecting its Scottish and Irish origins. It is less common in other parts of the world, but has spread to countries with significant Scottish and Irish diasporas, such as the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Many individuals with the last name McKnight have Scottish or Irish ancestry. The name often indicates a connection to the Clan Macnight or the wider Gaelic community. It is possible that some bearers of the surname may have played a role in Scottish or Irish history, although specific details are uncertain.

The meaning of the last name McKnight can be analyzed through its component parts. The word “cnáimh” carries connotations of strength and endurance, as bones are essential for support and structure. Additionally, the word “cnáimh” is associated with the concept of ancestry and lineage. The surname McKnight thus signifies a connection to a strong ancestral heritage.

While the exact origins and history of the surname McKnight may remain elusive, the name carries with it a sense of heritage and tradition. Individuals with this last name can take pride in their Scottish and Irish roots, knowing that their name evokes qualities of strength and familial connection.

Interesting facts about the last name Mcknight

  • The surname McKnight is of Scottish and Irish origin.
  • It is derived from the Gaelic name Mac Cnáimhín, meaning “son of Cnáimhín.”
  • The name Cnáimhín itself can be translated as “gentle one” or “little saint.”
  • The McKnight surname is relatively rare, with only a small number of individuals bearing this name.
  • Historically, the McKnight family is associated with the region of Ulster in Northern Ireland.
  • Many McKnight individuals migrated to the United States during the 19th and 20th centuries, particularly in search of better economic opportunities.
  • The surname McKnight can also be found in other English-speaking countries such as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
  • Notable individuals with the McKnight surname have made contributions in various fields including music, sports, literature, and academia.
  • The name McKnight often evokes imagery of bravery, strength, and resilience.
  • Several variations of the surname McKnight exist, including MacNéil and MacNachtan.

Name Rank


There are around 34055 people with the last name Mcknight in the US

Related Names

Related Regions