What is in a name?

Names? I have quite a number of them. and if you were to put them all in a line you would get Frances Moira McKay Faelyn Nic Gan Ceanach de Rochefort.

I was named Frances for it’s Gaelic meaning of ‘freedom’. In Scotland where I was born, the sentiment of freedom was something that beat strong in the heart of every decent son or daughter born of that land. My mother’s first name for me was a wish, a prayer and a hope that we could all remain free. Moira, I was named for my Grandmother – her name having two meanings, one meaning of the name is ‘bitter’ – the other being ‘great’. No matter that Christianity’s own Goddess, the Blessed Virgin Mary is the derivative of that name, together or separate, it has held true for me. I am not embittered, but I have tasted life’s bitter fruits as well as great Power.

The Clan McKay, called Mac Aoidh in Gaelic, meaning the ‘Son of Aodh.’ or ‘Son of Fire’ , were originally descended of the Picts – with clear and direct ties to the Sidhe, who are my Ancestors and whose blood I carry in my veins. Our motto is ‘Manu forti’ , ‘With a strong hand,’ and by the fourteenth century,the McKay’s were most numerous in the Nothermost regions of Scotland, our family lands stretched from Cape Wrath along the north coast to Caithness. Over time we lost the whole of those lands to Clan Sutherland. This was long after I myself had left the shores of Scotland for the Fortunate Island and my husband’s lands in France. The ties to my family there long since having dissipated into the mists of time.

The name Faelyn, however, was given to me when I was but a wee lass. It was a name that my foster mother, Morgienne had to claim for me from the Unseelie, for my father, Gan Ceanach, was none to keen to acknowledge the liaison between himself and my mother. With the threat of being forsworn in front of all the Unseelie Court, he relented at last, and the name was mine. The name Faelyn itself means, “Beautiful Fae”. Only those closest to me ever use that name, though some, such as Hsu, never have used it. Sebastien will only use that name when speaking to me, and I suppose that this is appropriate, all things considered. Gan Ceanach means ‘Love Talker’, which is the name of my Sidhe father. Nic Gan Ceanach, simply means ‘Daughter of Gan Ceanach’, and tells those among the Sidhe whose daughter I am; not that my father and I have ever had much to say to each other.

The Noble House of my husband’s ancestors was founded before the year 876 when the Merovingian Kings were supplanted by those of the Carolingians by the Pope. The Houses of Rochefort and of Rochechouart are the oldest families of French nobility. The name originally from the Old French, roche, meaning ‘rocky outcrop’, and indeed, the de Rochefort lands are surrounded by beautiful mountains on nearly all sides. Suffice it to say that within my husband’s veins runs blood that is more pure than that of the Kings of France. His line is from the Noblesse Ancienne – the Ancient Nobles, and the Noblesse d’Epee – the Nobles of the Sword and back even further, some have speculated to even before Vercingetorix, who was defeated by Julius Caesar. The members of his family, from the earliest times, have been an integral part of the history of France and have served as soldiers, politicians, officials and artists. The family mottoes are “Ante mare undae” or “L’esprit surpasse la matière”.(“Spirit surpasses Matter”.) and my personal favourite, “Avant que la mer fût au monde, Rochechouart portait les ondes” (“Before the sea was in the world, the Rochechouart carried the waves”). If anything could be said to sum up the sense of self-importance that every de Rochefort and Rochechouart I have ever met has in full measure, it would be these words. I would say that I have also embraced this as well.


Muse: Fanny Fae / Faelyn
Fandom: Original Character / Folklore / Mythology
Word Count: 659

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