Last Updated on 18 February 2014 by gerry
Chewin’ gum for the eyes.
as Fr. Dougal might have put it regarding the X Factor. We probably should extend that to chewin’ gum for the eyes, ears and nerve ends.
Anyway, I’ll hold my hand up – I have been watching the X Factor this year. Ever since young Eoghan Quigg appeared during the audition episodes, it provided the potential for actually having an impact on life in my family.
You see Eoghan was the name we gave to our first-born, which was no great affliction when he lived here in Ireland, but as soon as he returned to the city of his birth, Edinburgh, he has encountered a fair amount of hassle at school because of his name. People would call him Eugene and worse.
Thankfully for a sizeable proportion of the UK population the name Eoghan no longer holds the same mystery or capacity for getting tongue-tied. But it was not just the X Factor finalist’s first name that interested us, his unusual surname was also familiar to me as a name I had come across in researching my family tree.
It turns out that many moons ago, Maura Quigg, apparently a great-aunt of the same Eoghan Quigg married James Friel, my mother’s first cousin. This of course doesn’t mean that my Eoghan is related to the other Eoghan, but they can appear on the same family tree. I reckon that some of Eoghan Quigg’s second cousins will be third cousins of my children.
Other interesting facts about Eoghan
I was surprised to discover recently that Eoghan has been quite a popular name for Irish babies over the last half a dozen years or so (on average the 47th most common boy’s name 2002-7). More popular than, say, Aidan (on average the 63rd most common boy’s name 2002-7), my other son’s name, not withstanding the prevalence of the more usual spelling, Eoin (on average the 19th most common name 2002-7). Below is an excerpt from the Central Statistics Office report on babies names in Ireland, showing how the names were ranked by popularity from 2002-7.