We are many, we are diverse, we are one

We are Fitzpatricks. We have genetic diversity, we have various Irish homelands, we have narratives too many to number and we have mysteries yet to be uncovered. We are Mac Giolla Phádraig and we are Ó Maol Phádraig and we are the yet to be discovered. We are the children of great Irish ancestors who have gone before us. We are proud, we are strong, we are one under the same name, and our hearts are for each other. To serve, to follow.

clan membership

Anyone aged 18 years or older with a family association to the surname Fitzpatrick, or it's variants, is free to apply for membership. Clan Membership costs nothing - all it takes is your time to fill out the application form and send it to us.

need help?

We have a team of dedicated and experienced researchers that well understand the road blocks you can come up against while conducting Irish research. And our DNA experts are truly the world's best in the field of Fitzpatrick-DNA research.

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As luck would have it, we are offering members the chance to win a free Y-DNA SNP test (current value USD39). There's one prize up for grabs every month. Members who choose to opt into the draw have a chance to win, but read the fine print.

Fitzpatrick Clan Society

The Objects of the Fitzpatrick Clan Society are to:

Promote, foster and facilitate Clan spirit, diversity, friendship and networking amongst Clan members.

Encourage and promote the study and preservation of the history, folklore, and traditions of Fitzpatricks.

Encourage and promote the study of the genetic genealogy of Fitzpatricks.

Provide support and resources to Clan members seeking to understand their Fitzpatrick roots and connections.

Provide opportunities for Clan members to participate in international and regional gatherings where Clan members could reasonably benefit from such participation.

Fitzpatrick is registered with the Guild of One-Name Studies and the Fitzpatrick Clan Society is in the process of being registered with the Clans of Ireland (Finte na hÉireann), which was established to: authenticate and register Irish Clans and historical families; promote the interests of Irish Clans and historical families; and, provide authentic and scholarly information related to Irish Clans and historical families.

Two of our Clans, Ó Maol Phádraig Bréifne - O'Mulpatrick of Bréifne and Mac Giolla Phádraig Ulaid - Mac Gilpatrick of Ulster, are now registered with Clans of Ireland, which is an indication of their status amongst their Irish Clan peers.

What is an Irish Clan?

An Irish clan is a kinship group formed around inherited cultural identities that are real or assumed. Historically, membership of a clan was determined by use of the clan surname, living in the clan territory and sharing in the culture and heritage of the clan. Today, to belong to a clan one must at least inherit or choose to carry the clan surname and identify with the culture and heritage of the clan.

Who we are, and who are we?

The Fitzpatrick Y-DNA study, which was started by Dr Colleen Fitzpatrick, has found there are several large and distinct groups of Fitzpatricks. Aligning the results of the DNA study with historical records and genealogies has enabled three of these larger genetic groups to also be defined by geographic location. They are Fitzpatrick of Ossory (Mac Giolla Phadráig Osraige), O'Mulpatrick of Bréifne (Ó Maol Phádraig Bréifne) and MacKilpatrick of Ulster (Mac Giolla Phadráig Ulaid). These genetic groups match those identified by McLysaght as the Clans who were to take the surname Fitzpatrick.

There is also a large group we can distinguish genetically, but at this stage we are unable to identify an Irish homeland. It is possible this group are Ó Maol Phádraig Bréifne because there is an association with Cavan for some members. And it is also possible they are associated with Mac Giolla Phadráig Osraige since O’Hart and other Irish historians refer to Mac Giolla Phadráigs from Ossory who migrated to Cavan, but primary sources for this are lacking - it may well be based on the Annalistic reference of Ossorians fleeing to Connaught in 1157 AD combined with the assumption that these were the same Fitzpatricks who were known to reside in Bréifne from the early 18th Century.

The DNA project has established these numerous Fitzpatricks are a branch of haplotype FGC11134, which is common in Munster and Leinster. In addition, the group is further identified by a block of Fitzpatrick specific SNPs, including BY9002, that are old (later than ca. 450 AD) and consistent with an early adoption of a Patriac patronym. The DNA project is endeavouring to uncover more about this group who, at this stage, are referred to by their haplotype (BY9002).

As well as the five larger groups mentioned, there are many smaller genetic groups that include haplotypes R-Z255, R-L513, R-M222, R-U106, I-M223 and J-M172. The L513 group is particularly interesting because it is strongly associated with the surname Maguire and, therefore, may represent descendants of Gilla Phádraig of Fermanagh of the Maguires.

And then there are many individuals with no close Y-DNA matches to any other Fitzpatricks; they include men identified by haplotypes R-Z253, R-CTS1751, D, E, I and Q-M242.

Many of us have a strong understanding of who we are as Fitzpatricks. But for many the question is, "Who are we?" Whatever being a Fitzpatrick means to you, know the Fitzpatrick Clan Society warmly embraces all who have connections to the Fitzpatrick surname.

The Clans we know

Fitzpatrick of Ossory (Mac Giolla Phádraig Osraige)

Very much has been written about the Fitzpatricks of Ossory and much of that recorded relates to the line of Brian Óg Mac Giolla Phádraig (c. 1485-1575) who was the last claimant to the kingdom of Ossory (Osraige). Under surrender and regrant he was created the Baron of Upper Ossory in 1541 by Henry VIII; in doing he took the surname Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick has remained a common surname in Counties that share the territory of ancient Ossory, viz., Kilkenny, Laois, Offaly, Tipperary and Waterford.

Many Fitzpatricks who trace to Ossory are readily identified by their distinctive Y-DNA signature and further, recently obtained, DNA evidence has revealed fascinating insights into the relatively recent Frankish roots of the most documented of all Fitzpatrick Clans, challenging the long held beliefs that they descend from the ancient Giolla Phádraig dynasts.

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O'Mulpatrick of Bréifne (Ó Maol Phádraig Bréifne)

The swathe of territory that is Bréifne has a history of powerful chieftains, conflict and upheaval. Fitzpatricks have long been present in Bréifne with historians recording both Ó Maol Phádraig and Mac Giolla Phádraig throughout the country. The DNA study has identified at least three different haplotypes associated with Bréifne Fitzpatricks, but with the surname Ó Maol Phádraig being absorbed into Fitzpatrick in the 17th Century it is not trivial to determine who is who.

Advanced DNA test results have closely matched haplotype BY2630 (a branch of L513) with the surnames of several close Ó Maol Phadráig associates in the 17th century. In addition, these BY2630 Fitzpatricks trace to near Belturbet in Cavan, which is where references to Mulpatricks are found in the 1641 Depositions. Hence, our working thesis is that one type of Ó Maol Phádraig Bréifne may be BY2630. However, any Fitzpatrick who traces to Bréifne may consider themselves part of this Clan.

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MacGilpatrick of Ulster (Mac Giolla Phádraig Ulaid)

There are numerous Fitzpatricks clearly identified in historical records, starting with the Patent Rolls of James I, pertaining to Co. Down, from the early 17th Century to the present day. MacGilpatrick, an established variant of Mac Giolla Phádraig, is listed as one of the principal names in the Barony of Upper Iveagh in the 1659 Census.

Until recently the origin of these Fitzpatricks was unknown, but with the discovery of their Fitzpatrick-specific genetic fingerprint, BY2849, which formed ca. 1100 AD it is now understood this Clan trace to Leinster in ancient times. Clan members are still found in Leinster today in Co. Kildare and Co. Louth, but they are by far most numerous in Co. Down.

The mystery of their arrival in the Barony of Iveagh, the Barony of Mourne and the Lordship of Newry before the early 1600s, their rapid proliferation in that area, and their associations with the Clanaboy O'Neill and Clan Magennis is being uncovered for the first time.

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The Clans we don't know

Not knowing exactly where you fit, or how you connect, makes no difference to us. If you have an association to the Fitzpatrick name, you are one of us. And perhaps we can help you uncover more about your Fitzpatricks and greater Irish roots.