a prefix found in many family names of Irish or Scottish Gaelic origin, as MacBride and Macdonald.
Also Mc- Mc-, M'-.

Origin of Mac-

< Irish, Scots Gaelic mac son, Old Irish macc; akin to Welsh, Cornish mab Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for mac-


Mc- or M'-


(in surnames of Scottish or Irish Gaelic origin) son ofMacDonald; MacNeice

Word Origin for Mac-

from Goidelic mac son of; compare Welsh mab, Cornish mab
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for mac-


common element in Scottish and Irish names, from Old Celtic *makko-s "son." Cognate root *makwos "son" produced Old Welsh map, Welsh mab, ap "son;" also probably cognate with Old English mago "son, attendant, servant," Old Norse mögr "son," Gothic magus "boy, servant," Old English mægð "maid" (see maiden).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper