Corca Laidhe yDNA Regional Study
Last updated: 22 Mar 2021
READ BEFORE CLICKING JOINProspective members who have any questions ABOUT THE PROJECT after reading the materials here should email Susan at corcalaidhedna @ earthlink.net. If you expect us to see your email and want a reply, copy and paste the exact phrase CORCA LAIDHE PROJECT into the subject line of your email. Otherwise it will be deleted as spam. Emails must be BRIEF. Do NOT send attachments. Other than for project members, we do NOT advise on your own DNA results by private email. Search FTDNA for relevant surname and haplogroup projects or check our LINKS.
Our MAIN PURPOSE is to find out whether there is anything unique or distinctive about the genetics of men descended from the Corca Laidhe, a first millennium kingdom in Munster. We are also investigating whether there are paternal line relationships between the Corca Laidhe and Ossory, an ancient diocese the boundaries of which lay mainly in present-day County Kilkenny. We want to share our findings with interested researchers. Our project thus surveys the Y chromosome DNA of men bearing surnames associated with the Corca Laidhe, an ancient people who lived and ruled in Munster, Ireland. Their pedigree allegedly begins with Lughaidh Maccon who died in 225 AD. Their genealogy from about the 1100's was recorded in the 1500's, translated from Irish to English in the 1800's, and is now online in both scanned and digital format (see LINKS).
In terms of its influence, the kingdom of the Corca Laidhe was probably at its zenith around 200 or 300 C.E. The beginning of our timeframe of interest in terms of identifying Y SNPs relevant to the inhabitants of Corca Laidhe territory would therefore predate that. It would extend through the 12th century, by which time many patrilines had probably acquired surnames. GBIG documents the inhabitants of Corca Laidhe territory who were living around the end of that time span.
Our PRIMARY goal is to identify the Y SNPs of the Hereditary Proprietors (Chieftains) of the Corca Laidhe as documented in old texts, and those of the inhabitants of their lands. See the references marked 2 in the Surname Inclusion Notes on our BACKGROUND page. These Y SNPs and SNP streams may not necessarily be distinct Y SNPs that are unique to the Corca Laidhe. They probably are not. The inhabitants of the territory were in all likelihood a mixture of the descendants of indigenous occupants plus those who originally arrived in that territory with the Corca Laidhe rulers.
While fulfilling our primary goal, a companion to it is to observe any possible SNP haplogroup and surname relationships to Ossory, the ancient diocese of Kilkenny. These intermediate objectives are described in the Background in a sidebar.
It should be noted that the O'Driscolls were the historical rulers. The O'Driscolls today have an honorary, not a bloodline - chieftain. The chieftain line may have daughtered out / died out. Therefore we may never discover the SNPs of the old Corca Laidhe rulers. The Driscoll project has been doing research following up on cadet branches but has not identified any living candidates today.
Our SECONDARY goal is to identify the Y SNPs of cousin lineages to the Corca Laidhe as documented in old texts and determine whether and how they are related. The first order of priority here is the surnames and data under the Mearing of the Middle Cantred of Ó Cobhthaigh's Territory. See the References marked 3 in the Surname Inclusion Notes on our BACKGROUND page.
Our TERTIARY goals are to discover where the Corca Laidhe fits in the context of Munster and Ireland history and genetic history and to hopefully help you learn more about your own paternal line.
Over time some members may be determined to have 'Corca Laidhe DNA' (mutation patterns on the Y chromosome believed to have been present among the Corca Laidhe when they ruled Munster) and some not.
There is NO assurance that we will achieve our goals.Prospective members who have any questions ABOUT THE PROJECT after reading the materials here should email Susan at corcalaidhedna @ earthlink.net. If you expect us to see your email and want a reply, copy and paste the exact phrase CORCA LAIDHE PROJECT into the subject line of your email. Otherwise it will be deleted as spam. Emails must be BRIEF. Do NOT send attachments. Other than for project members, we do NOT advise on your own DNA results by private email. Search FTDNA for relevant surname and haplogroup projects or check our LINKS.
To acquire enough data to discover if the Corca Laidhe can be differentiated from other Munster groups we need 10 sets of haplotypes from at least 10 ten different Corca Laidhe surnames whose earliest known ancestor was born in Munster.
All results are valuable to the ongoing analysis. Please do not leave the project even if you believe you don't have Corca Laidhe DNA. Your results will be needed for comparison.
Advanced SNP Testing
The Corca Laidhe project relies heavily on advanced SNP testing to sort out exactly which haplogroups and subclades the various Corca Laidhe surname lineages belong to. The more advanced our data the more useful it is. Participants are encouraged to do everything they can to further their SNP testing to the highest resolution they can afford. The project may want to reference these results in a research publication. The Munster Irish DNA project uses our results, and academics may wish to assess them as well. Active participation refines our understanding of Corca Laidhe and Munster genetic and surname histories.
All members should find their placement on the Y DNA Results page by kit number and look for the link in their subgroup title. Those links are to each participant's applicable haplogroup project the next level up from their current terminal SNP. Participants should join this project if they haven't already and consult your haplogroup admins on your best next steps. Their advice may save some money. Wait for good sale opportunities before embarking on Big Y SNP testing.
One of the principle problems is that nearly all the data comes from descendants of men whose genealogy did not begin to be recorded until fairly recently, i.e. circa 1700-1800. What little ancient genealogy is available principally concerns the royal lines. Rather than trying to deal statistically with a small signal amidst a plethora of noise, a direct approach is preferable wherein persons known to descend from the Corca Laidhe are tested.- Identify documented descendants of the Corca Laidhe. The Great Book of Irish Genealogies is a set of 5 volumes published in 2004 and based on material written circa 1650. WorldCat lists 22 libraries that hold the set. The book needs to be checked to see if it shows pedigrees of Corca Laidhe persons living in the 1600s when the book was published.
Circumstantial Evidence- O'Donovan, Miscellany of the Celtic Society (1849): "according to a wild tradition in the country, there are fishermen on Cape Clear and on other islands off the Coast of Carbery, who are lineally descended from the youngest son of Sir Finghin, or Florence, of 1602".- Test several different O'Driscoll whose earliest known ancestor is from one of the islands off the Coast of Carbery.- In O'Hart's Irish Pedigrees (1892) he links some ancient and contemporary pedigrees. Unfortunately he did not always document the linkages and records he may have used were likely destroyed in the 1922 Four Courts fire. Nevertheless he names some persons living when the book was written and their genealogy can be worked forward in time to find living males.- Test descendants of the Coffey of Munster and compare the results with the Nicholson said to have branched from the Coffey line represented by descendants of Donald MacNicol, Chief of the Clan in the Isle of Skye, in the reigns of King Charles I. and II.- A chronology of the MacClanchy from 1241 to 1641 appeared in the Irish Penny Journal in 1841 (O’Donovan, 1849, p 85). The article concludes with “the property of the MacClanchys was confiscated after the rebellion of 1641, but their name is the prevailing one in the barony of Dartree, or Rossclogher, to the present day.” These MacClanchy or Clancy share a common ancestor with the Corca Laidhe.- Test Clancy with a tradition of being descendents of the Clancy of Dartree.