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My name is Michael McGrath. I've been researching my own clan and discovered that when the McGraths moved over to Scotland they were known as MacRaes and MacRas because the "th" was never pronounced. I'm sure that there was, in actuality, a less modern adaptation of the name. They/we are the same people and found further evidence in searching out proper family coats of arms where I found three different versions of the MacRae coat of arms and along with them, a McGrath coat of arms. Also, our motto is the same. "Salus In Fide" brothers. If anyone can further my knowledge on the matter it would be greatly appreciated.


Michael McGrath

Query posted by : Michael McGrath

30 Nov 2003 at 16.12
The following replies have been posted in response to the above query. They are sorted chronologically according to the time of receipt, with the most recent at the end of the page.
Michael, my clansman,
the question how anything was spelt at a time when most noblemen were illiterate is completely academic!
500 years later when Boswell and Dr Johnson visited Kintail, not one of "Seaforth's people" spoke English; and even 150 years later, the gutteral Gaelic pronounced approximately "M'Raw" was reduced to writing in any number of ways, without our illiterate ancestors either knowing or caring how! (Spellings of many common words were by no means unique, and some alternatives still exist.) The standard spellings adopted by the Army became the most widespread, but in many places the local family adopted whatever transliteration was used by the first literate generation.

The coats of arms are a different matter. By the Scots law of arms, administered by the Lyon Court totally separately from the jurisdiction of the English College of Arms, arms are the property of only one man at a time, and only heritable by his heir (not necessarily the eldest son). However, 1: every other member of the armiger's family may petition the Lord Lyon to "matriculate" arms which are "differenced" with various labels; 2: a Scotsman "of good repute" may petition for a new grant of arms, which in practice may be similar to others of the same name. There is no such thing as a "family coat of arms" and the Lyon Court will still prosecute anyone who presumes in Scotland to bear arms to which they are not personally entitled. (However, mottos and crests are more changeable by individuals, and need not be granted or closely regulated by the Court.) I am just going through all this process myself, so if you would like further info do email me at
Jeremy Burnett Rae

Reply posted by : Jeremy Burnett Rae

3 Dec 2003 at 10.56
MacRae and McGrath are the same clan.

Reply posted by : Corneliabush

7 Jan 2007 at 16.14
Hello, my name is Kymberlyn McCrea. I also have this clan book, and i must say, THIS IS AWSOME! Thank you. I was at the Scottish festivale, with my Grand-pa, George McCrea, and i found my sign and everything. Kinda weird, but even though we may not be blood related, i call everyone who is a McCrea my brother or sister.

Reply posted by : Kymberlynmccrea

18 Nov 2007 at 18.00
Although the original post is many years old hopefully this may still be of some use to you. The Clan McGrath of Ulster are undoubtedly linked to the Clan Macrae of Scotland. You can find out more by visiting
Hope that helps.

Reply posted by : Mac Craith Na Uladh

15 Feb 2016 at 13.07
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