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The Shield is: Sable, a falcon volent, seizing a mallard argent.
Translation: The falcon signifies one who is eager in the Pursuit of his Objective and symbolizes a Noble and Strong Spirit in Enterprises of Honor. Sable (black) denotes Constancy and represents the planet Saturn.
The Crest is: A wolf salient gules.
The Mottoes are: "Christo duce vincamus." - "With Chirst I will conquer", and "Propria virtute audax" - "Daring in the cause of virtue".
Clan members: Larkins, Finnertys, Cosgraves, and Mooneys.
Variant spellings for Madden are: Madan, Maddan, Maddin, Maddon, Maden, Madin, Maddigan, Madon, Maidan, Maiden, Meadon, Madigan, Madagane, Madine, O'Madden, O'Maddane, O'Madagane, O'Madigane, O'Madagane, and MacAvaddy.

The following Maddens are entitled to bear their Coat of Arms:
1. Confirmed by Roberts Ulster, 1647, as the ancient coat armour of his ancestors differenced, to Lieutenant HUGH MADDEN, descended from an ancient family of that name, co. Galway, who served Charles I. under Lord Docknora).
2. Bloxham Beauchamp, co. Oxford, Baggots Rath, co. Dublin, Manor Waterhouse, co. Fermanagh, and now of Hilton Park, co. Monagham; Fun. Ent. Ulster's office, 1671, ELIZABETH, daughter and co-heir of Charles Waterhouse, Esq., of Manor Waterhouse, and wife of JOHN MADDEN, Esq., of Maddenton, co. Kildare, eldest son of THOMAS MADDEN, Esq., of Baggots Rath, who was eldest son of JOHN MADDEN, Esq., of Bloxham Beauchamp, the son of HUGH MADDEN, Esq., of same place. Same Arms, the cross botonnée. Crest- Out of a ducal coronet gules a falcon rising or, holding in the beak a cross crosslet fitchée also gules. Another Crest (Fun. Ent.)- A falcon, wings expanded argent membered or, holding in the dexter paw a cross botonnée gules. Motto- Fortior qui se vincit. 'He is stronger who conquers himself'.
3. Roslea Manor, co. Fermanagh, Same Arms, Crest, and Motto, a crescent for difference.
4. Inch House, co. Dublin. Same Arms, Crest, and Motto, a mullet for difference.
5. Meadesbrook; descended from ROBERT MADDEN, Esq. of Dunore, co. Dublin, d. 1635, second son of THOMAS MADDEN, m. Rev. JOHN GOLDSMITH, Parson of Newton, co. Meath, ancestor of OLIVER GOLDSMITH, the Poet. Same Arms.
6. Granted by Betham, Ulster, to Sir FREDERICK MADDEN, K.A., Gentleman of the Privy Chamber, son of WILLIAM MADDEN, of Cole Hill House, Fulham Middlesex, and to their descendants. Arms- Sable a falcon or, belled gules preying on a mallard argent on a chief indented of the second a cross botonnée of the third. Crest- Out of a ducal coronet gules a falcon rising or, holding in the beak a cross botonnée, as in the arms. Motto- Propria virtute audax. 'Daring by my own valour'.

Madden and O'Madden are both Irish patronymic names, Anglicized from the Gaelic O Madaidhin , which meant 'descendant of Madaidhin' whose name was derived from madadh = hound, mastiff. The name also means "Small Dog".

The family of O'Madden, of Ui Maine, can be found on the banks of the Shannon River. Their territory included parts of the barony of Longford in Co. Galway, and the barony of Garrycastle in Kings Co. (Co. Offaly).

In Keatings History "O'Madagain or O'Madadhaim Anglicized O'Madden" was given in Longford barony and on the other side of the Shannon in the parish of Lusmagh in Kings Co.. They are given as a branch of the Clan Colla, of the same descent as the O'Kelleys, princes of the Ui Maine.

They held sway after the 12th century Norman invasions, under the Burke family, who were of Norman descent.

Madigan, likely an older form of the name, comes from the same old gaelic spelling as Madden. It is common to find that a Madigan has shortened his name into Madden.

Madigan is found mainly in Limerick and Clare in the 1890 birth index, with some 27 births given. Madden had some 107 births, their distribution is shown below.
Births of the surname in 1890 (by province): Leinster 21, Munster 33, Connacht 37, Ulster 16.
Most common in counties: Galway, Cork, Dublin, Antrim.

Madden has as well been found in Antrim and Derry. Some believe that they are a branch of the Galway-Limerick family cited above.

It should be noted that there are English families of the name, and Maddentown in Co. Kildare is named for the same.

In 1659 "Maddin" was a principal name of Tipperary, "Madden" was so in Kings, and "O'Madagane" was so in Limerick. "O'Madigane" was found as a principal name of Clare and Limerick.

In addition to pedigree and useful notes thereon O'Donovan in his edition of The Tribes and Customs of Hy Many, Appendix B, has a long note on O'Madden arms. The probability of the Maddens of Maddenton, who came to Ireland from Oxfordshire in the sixteenth century, being actually of Irish origin, is also considered there.

Maddens in Co. Galway
The O'Maddens were a branch of Uí Maine of east Galway whose territory crossed the Shannon into Offaly. Their chief was the recognised lord of the area for centuries. The ancestor from whom the surname derives was Madudan, Son of Cadhra Mór. He was slain in 1008. Murchadh O'Madden was the founder of Portumna Abbey in 1426 while his grandson, John, established Meelick Abbey in 1479. The family also built strongholds which are referred to in the Irish annals. Their castle at Meelick is recorded as being in 1235 occupied. It was destroyed in 1595 and appears to have been abandoned thereafter, perhaps being of less strategic importance than Cloghan Castle on the east of the Shannon. The English conquest of the O'Madden territory may be said to have began with the capture of Meelick Castle in 1557 by Lord Deputy, Sussex. The O'Maddens were not yet overthrown in the area. Donal O'Madden attended the Irish Parliament in 1585 but ten years later was in rebellion and many of his sept were killed in a bloody attack on his Cloghan Castle by the Lord Deputy, Sir William Russell. A firebrand thrown on the roof set the thatch on fire and disorganised the defenders. The O'Maddens were later, in 1643, to build another castle, this time at Derryhivenny, near Portumna. It is an interesting tower house surrounded by a bawn with two small flanking towers on the corners and is a well-preserved building.

The seventeenth century saw the final loss of much of the O'Madden estates but the O'Maddens still survive in or near their ancient territory. Some are scattered. The Maddens of Athgarret, County Kildare, were originally O'Maddens of Galway. So too, surprisingly, are the Madigans of Clare and Limerick. The most notable of modern members of the family was Richard Robert Madden who wrote the history of the United Irishmen. A brass plaque in his memory is to be seen in the ancient Cathedral of Clonfert.

The most famous bearer of the name was Dr. Richard Robert Madden (1798-1886), doctor, traveller, historian, and fervent opponent of the slave trade. He was also the author of The United Irishmen, their Lives and Times; and is given assuming some of the lands of Ballyteigue, Lisdoonvarna, and Knockaskeheen.
The Rev. Samuel Madden (1686-1765) the philanthropist, belonged to the Maddenton family.
Two other Irish Maddens distinguished themselves in the field of literature, viz. Daniel Owen Madden (1815-1859), and Thomas More Madden (1844-1902), the latter a son of Richard Robert mentioned above.

There presently are a number of famous Maddens in America. The most widely known are:
1)John Madden (b. April 10, 1936 in Austin, Minnesota) former guard on the Philadelphia Eagles, former coach for Oakland Raiders (1969-77), and football commentator on Monday Night Football.
2)Dave Madden (b. December 12, 1933 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Raised in Terre Haute, Indiana) "The Partridge Family", "Alice";
3)David Madden (b. July 25, 1955 in Chicago, Illinois) Producer, "Save the last dance" (2000), "Runaway Bride" (1999), "The Old Couple II" (1998), "The Hand That Rocks The Cradle" (1992), "Renegade" (1989), and "Blind Fury" (1989).
4)John Madden (b. April 08, 1949 Portsmouth, Hampshire, England, UK) Director "Shakespeare in Love" (1998).

Arms for the name are found on plates 55 and 163 in the Irish Book or Arms.


The Book of Irish Families Great & Small Irish Families: Their Names, Arms, and Origins "General Armory"
Michael C. O'Laughin Edward MacLysaght Sir John Bernard Burke
1997 Irish Genealogical FoundationIrish Academic Press Limited 1991