Recorded in many forms including MacCulloch, MacCullock, MacCullagh, McCulloch, McCullock, McCulley and without any prefix such as Cullagh, Culloch, and Culley, this surname is of pre medieval Gaelic origins, being widely recorded in both Scotland and Ireland. It derives from patronymic McCullach, with 'Mac' meaning 'son of' and 'cullach', a wild boar. Almost all Gaelic surnames originate from a nickname for the first chief of the caln, and as most had earned their position by force of arms, to be called 'Wild boar' would certainly be a badge of office. There is a possible but similar explanation from the Gaelic 'Cu-Uladh' meaning the Hound of Ulster, but that would have been equally popular. The name was translated as Boar in Northern Sligo, sometimes also spelt as Bower. The name dates back to the late 13th Century (see below). Variations in the idiom of the spelling include one Agnes Mc Culloch who was christened in Edinburgh on August 7th 1614. John MacCulloch who married Margaret Troop on July 25th 1690 in Edinburgh and Eliza McCullough who was christened at St. Martin- in-the-Fields, Westminster. On June 1st 1846 one James McCulloch, aged thirty three, a famine emigrant, sailed aboard the 'Brooksby' from Glasgow to New York. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Maculagh, which was dated 1296 recorded as 'The Count of Wyggeton (Wigtown)', during the reign of King John Balliol of Scotland, 1292 - 1296. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

Surnames reference. 2013.

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