Recorded as McGettigan and McEttigan, this is an Irish surname of confused origins. It may originate from a Norse-Viking personal name of the pre 9th century, although no definitive link has been established except that the Vikings did control most of northern Ireland as far south as Dublin for several centuries. A more likely explanation is that its origins are Welsh and a Gaelic form of the early personal name Gethin, meaning swarthy. If so it may well have been introduced into Ireland at the time of the conquest of the country by Strongbow, Earl of Pembroke in 1170.
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