The origin of the McDuck/MacDuich name: a theory Jun 11, 2021 6:48:03 GMT Spectrus, LP, and 2 more like this
Post by juicymcduck on Jun 11, 2021 6:48:03 GMT
As we all know, the name of Scrooge’s clan, McDuck, was originally MacDuich — at least according to Don Rosa’s unpublished pages for The Last of the Clan McDuck. I’ve been trying to devise a theory to explain the origins of that name.
The presence of the mac element at the beginning indicates that the name MacDuich is patronymic, i.e. it refers to the clan’s (supposed) historical ancestor. The trouble is, Duich isn’t a real Gàidhlig first name. Upon research, I discovered that there’s a sea loch situated on the western coast of Scotland that’s called "Loch Duich"! That seemed promising until I realized that Duich is in fact the English name of the loch, while its Gàidhlig name is Loch Dubhthaich…
It didn’t look like good news at first, but I kept researching and made several interesting discoveries. First, Dubhthaich is a genitive (= possessive form), meaning that Loch Dubhthaich translates as "Duthac’s loch," and therefore we have a given name! Moreover, Gàidhlig spelling can be deceptive for those not in the know. In fact, Dubhthaich and Duich would be pronounced almost identically, depending on the region. (Duich would be one syllable, pronounced dwich, and Dubhthaich two syllables, pronounced doo-vich or doo-wich.*) Also, given that spelling wasn’t fixed until the 20th century, it’s plausible that MacDuich was a primitive or "incorrect" variant of a name that would have been written MacDubhthaich in other circumstances.
(*With "ch" as is "loch.")
Second interesting discovery: accoding to a Wikipedia article, there were (and perhaps still are?) people in Scotland called MacDubhthaich: "After the Scottish Reformation in 1560, the lands and property of the priory [of Oronsay] was given in commendam to Maol Choluim MacDubhthaich."
Third and last interesting discovery: the given name Dubhthach (Anglicised as Duthac) means "dark-skinned." According to the Italian comics series Storia e gloria della dinastia dei paperi, the earliest ancestor of Scrooge’s to ever live in Caledonia was an Egyptian royal — whom the native Scots would have found darker-skinned than themselves, no doubt! (Truth be told, the character in question isn't colored any darker than the others in the stories, but still...)
In sum, my working theory is the following: when Scrooge’s Egyptian ancestor moved to Scotland, he was nicknamed Dubhthach/Duthac (the dark-skinned one) by the locals, and ended up using that name for himself. He founded his own clan, and his son became the first MacDubhthaich ("son of the dark-skinned one"), which was rather spelled MacDuich for some reason.
So... what do you think?
So... what do you think?