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About us

The main goal of the Ruddy-Roddy Surname Project is to differentiate Y DNA among Ruddy and Roddy males, to determine which paternal ancestral lines are related to each other, and which are not, and to help connect individuals and families to their correct ancestral Roddy or Ruddy surname lines.

Results from this project to date show that Ruddy and Roddy are variants of the same linguistic root - "O'Rodaigh" - which is based on the Gaelic word "Rodach" meaning spirited or furious.  When spoken in the Irish language, "Rodaigh" frequently sounds like "Ruddy."  When written, "Rodaigh" appears like it should sound - at least to those with an Anglicized ear - like "Roddy."  Given the influence of accents, the high illiteracy rate in Ireland before and during the 19th Century and the difficulties communicating between those speaking Gaelic and those speaking English, it is easy to see how both the Ruddy and Roddy surnames could spring from "O'Rodaigh."

Some Ruddys may derive their surname from the Old English "rudde", which means of reddish complexion.  Thus far, however, this project has not discovered any Ruddys or Roddys of English origin.  All to date are of Irish origin.

We need each family tree to be represented in the project. Until that time, our conclusions about the surnames may change. Ideally, two males participate to represent each family tree. These males should have one of the surnames of interest. This is a tremendous opportunity to learn about your family tree, to contribute to the knowledge about your surname, and to discover the distant origin of your male line.