Murray-Priors in Ireland

John Murray/Murray Prior (1720-81). Tom Prior’s cousin and heir. m (1) Mary O’Neil (1720-61)
Andrew Murray Prior (c.1747-95) m 29 April 1772 Frances Morres (1751-1806)1)
Thomas Murray Prior (29 April 17732) - 5 November 1854) m. 1799 Catherine Palmer (d. 1802) m. (2) or de facto? Mary Ann Thompson and other possible liaisons producing children. This Thomas Murray Prior was the first of a continuing, unbroken line of Thomas Priors/Murray Priors/Murray-Prior.

With the acquisition of a country property with tenants, the Priors and subsequently Murray Priors established themselves as part of the Anglo-Irish gentry. The men were accorded the courtesy title Esquire, usually shortened to Esq. after their name. Arguably, when the estate was lost to the family, one of TLM-P's key motivations was to re-establish the prestige of his family. It is probable that, when re-establishing his family's status, TLM-P was the first to add a hyphen to the surname.

Ever since the above Thomas Murray Prior was born in 1773, the tradition has been followed that each Thomas and his wife call their first-born son Thomas. It’s a bonus that the name celebrates the first Prior in Ireland as well as the great Tom Prior whose will prompted the formation of the Murray-Prior name. It is less of a bonus when trying to keep track of which Thomas is which! Nevertheless it is an incredible achievement, indicative of a strong family identity. How many other families can match this tradition?

Frances' dates from Patrick Prior's family tree
Patrick Prior's family tree
  • murray-priors_in_ireland.txt
  • Last modified: 2022/09/29 21:36
  • by judith