What is the origin of the last name Sheridan?

The last name Sheridan originated in Ireland, deriving from the Gaelic Ó Sirideáin, meaning "descendant of Sirideán." It is a locational surname associated with places in County Longford and County Cavan, Ireland. The name is believed to have originated from the word "siride," meaning "a keeper." Over time, variations of the name emerged, including Sherry, Shiridan, Sheridon, and Sherret, reflecting different pronunciations and anglicizations.

Countries of origin for the last name Sheridan

The last name Sheridan originates from Ireland. It is an anglicized form of the Gaelic name Ó Sirideáin, meaning “descendant of Sirideán.” The Gaelic name Sirideán is a diminutive of the word siorrach, which means “wild, untamed.”

According to historical records, the name Sheridan was first found in County Longford, Ireland, where the family held a seat from ancient times. The Sheridans were originally an influential clan in the province of Connacht.

Over time, members of the Sheridan family migrated to various parts of the world, including the United States. Irish immigrants bearing the surname Sheridan arrived in significant numbers during the 19th century, seeking better opportunities and escaping the devastating effects of the Great Famine. These Irish immigrants played a vital role in shaping the cultural and social fabric of America.

Throughout history, individuals with the surname Sheridan have achieved notable accomplishments in various fields. One such figure is Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816), an Irish playwright and politician. He is best known for his plays, including “The Rivals” and “The School for Scandal.” Another prominent figure is General Philip Henry Sheridan (1831-1888), who served as a Union general in the American Civil War and later became a leading military figure during the Indian Wars.

As with many surnames, the meaning and significance behind the name Sheridan can vary depending on individual family histories and personal interpretations. However, the overarching understanding remains rooted in its Irish origins and the association with the Gaelic word siorrach, which evokes a sense of wildness or untamed nature.

In conclusion, the last name Sheridan derives from the Gaelic Ó Sirideáin, meaning “descendant of Sirideán.” It has a long history in Ireland, with notable individuals bearing the name making significant contributions to literature and military affairs. While it carries a sense of Irish heritage, the interpretation of the name’s meaning may also be influenced by personal experiences and family narratives. The surname Sheridan encapsulates both a connection to Ireland and a sense of untamed spirit.

Interesting facts about the last name Sheridan

  • The surname Sheridan is of Irish origin and derives from the Gaelic Ó Sirideáin, meaning “descendant of Sirideán.”
  • The name is most commonly associated with County Cavan in Ireland, where the Sheridan clan originated.
  • The Sheridans were known as a sept of the larger O’Reilly clan and held a position of prominence in the Kingdom of Breifne.
  • The first recorded spelling of the surname was MacSheroin in the Annals of the Four Masters, dated 1252.
  • Notable Sheridans include Richard Brinsley Sheridan, an influential playwright and politician in 18th century England, known for his works such as “The Rivals” and “The School for Scandal.”
  • Another notable figure is Philip Henry Sheridan, a Union general in the American Civil War, known for his strategic brilliance and subsequent military career.
  • The Sheridan family is associated with various coats of arms, depicting symbols such as a red hand, galloping horses, and a green snake swallowing a man.
  • The surname has spread beyond Ireland, and today there are Sheridan family branches in countries such as the United States, Australia, and Canada.
  • Sheridan is a popular given name for boys, particularly in English-speaking countries.
  • The name has also inspired the creation of various place names, including the city of Sheridan in Wyoming, United States.

Name Rank


There are around 22177 people with the last name Sheridan in the US

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