There are two septs of this name, which is rendered in Gaelic as O'hAllmhurain, one from the region of Lough Corrib in County Galway and the other from Ogonnelloe in Tulla Lower barony on the shore of Lough Derg. These septs provided the forbears of the HOLLORAN, O'HALLORAN and HALLORAN families. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. (Chiefs of Clan Fergaill, a large territory near Lough Corrib, County Galway.) The origin of badges and emblems, are traced to the earliest times, although, Heraldry, in fact, cannot be traced later than the 12th century, or at furthest the 11th century. At first armorial bearings were probably like surnames and assumed by each warrior at his free will and pleasure, his object being to distinguish himself from others. It has long been a matter of doubt when bearing Coats of Arms first became hereditary. It is known that in the reign of Henry V (1413-1422), a proclamation was issued, prohibiting the use of heraldic ensigns to all who could not show an original and valid right, except those 'who had borne arms at Agincourt'. The College of Arms (founded in 1483) is the Royal corporation of heralds who record proved pedigrees and grant armorial bearings. Ireland was one of the first countries to evolve a system of hereditary surnames: they came into being fairly generally in the 11th century, and indeed a few were formed before the year 1000. The Irish prefixes of Mac (son of) and O (grandson or descendant of) gave rise at an early date, to a set of fixed hereditary names in which the literal patronymic meaning was lost or obscured. These surnames originally signified membership of a clan, but with the passage of time, the clan system became less distinct, and surnames came to identify membership of what is called a 'sept' of people all living in the same locality, all bearing the same surname, but not necessarily descended from a common ancestor. Adoption of the name by people who did not otherwise have a surname and by their dependents was not uncommon. Later, nicknames were in some cases to supersede the original clan names.
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