This surname of MACILWHAM was a sept of Lamont and meant 'the son of the servant of Saint Thomas'. The name in Gaelic Mac Ghill Chama. The earliest of the names on record appear to be Thomas Makilquhone and Donald Makilquhone, who witnessed a charter in 1505. Ago McGillequhome appears in Strathdee in 1527, and Marion M'Ilquhan received a legacy in 1527. Alba, the country which became Scotland, was once shared by four races; the Picts who controlled most of the land north of the Central Belt; the Britons, who had their capital at Dumbarton and held sway over the south west, including modern Cumbria; the Angles, who were Germanic in origin and annexed much of the Eastern Borders in the seventh century, and the Scots. The latter came to Alba from the north of Ireland late in the 5th century to establish a colony in present day Argyll, which they named Dalriada, after their homeland. The Latin name SCOTTI simply means a Gaelic speaker. Gilcrist McIlhame was a tenant of Galtak in Islay in 1541, and Duncan McIlquhome in Straquhar was a witness to a charter in 1598. Donald Dow McGillewhome at the Kirk of Drymmen was fined for aiding Clan McGregor in 1613. The name occurs in the barony of Mugdock in the eighteenth century and in Finnick in 1780 as M'Ilquham. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write, signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way.
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