Family name
Meaning "sea-warrior"
Region of origin Ireland
Language(s) of origin Irish
Related names Murchadh, Murphey, MacMurphy, MacMurrough, Morphy, O'Morchoe, O'Murphy

Murphy is an Anglicized version of two Irish surnames: Ó Murchadha/Ó Murchadh ("descendant of Murchadh"), and Mac Murchaidh/Mac Murchadh ("son of Murchadh")[1] derived from the Irish personal name Murchadh, which meant "sea-warrior" or "sea-battler".[2] (Muir meaning "sea" and cath meaning "battle".[3])

Spelling variations include Murphey, MacMurphy, MacMurrough, O'Morchoe and others.[4] In modern Irish, "Ó Murchú", rather than "Ó Murchadha", is used.

Murphy is the most common surname in Ireland and the fifty-eighth most common surname in the United States.[5]


Notable people named Murphy




See also


  1. ^ Brewer, Paul (2002). Ireland: History, People, Culture. Running Press. p. 351. ISBN 0-7624-1269-0. 
  2. ^ MacLysaght, Edward (1991). The Surnames of Ireland. Irish Academic Press. p. 221. ISBN 978-0716523666. 
  3. ^ Hanks, Patrick; Hardcastle, Kate; Hodges, Flavia (2006), A Dictionary of First Names, Oxford Paperback Reference (2nd ed.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 352, 406, ISBN 978-0-19-861060-1 
  4. ^ Murphy - Surname Meaning and Definition.
  5. ^ Genealogy Data: Frequently Occurring Surnames from Census 2000

External links

  • Murphys of Ireland website, featuring general information about the Murphy surname, including derivation and discussion of the major early Murchadha septs in Ireland.

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  • Murphy — Gael. Murchadh sea warrior. The Celtic sea element is also in names MURIEL (Cf. Muriel) (q.v.), Murdoch (O.Ir. Muireadhach, O.Welsh Mordoc mariner ), etc. Murphy bed (1925) is named for U.S. inventor William Lawrence Murphy (1876 1959). By happy… …   Etymology dictionary

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  • Murphy, MO — U.S. Census Designated Place in Missouri Population (2000): 9048 Housing Units (2000): 3613 Land area (2000): 3.965039 sq. miles (10.269404 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.046730 sq. miles (0.121030 sq. km) Total area (2000): 4.011769 sq. miles… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

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