Liam

Liam

Given Name Revised
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Liam

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Liam is a short form of the Irish Gaelic name Uilliam, itself a derivative of the Frankish Willahelm. The original name was made up of a compound of the Old German elements vila (will or resolution) and helma (helmet), and so means "helmet of will". When the Frankish Empire split in half, the name developed differently in each region. In the French part, Willahelm developed first into Guilielm, and then into Guillaume.

Although the name was well known in England prior to 1066, through Saxon dealings with Guillaume, Duc de Normandie, it was viewed as a "foreign" name and not used by the English, Welsh, Scots or Irish. Then, in 1066, the Norman Duke William the Conqueror (Guillaume le Conquérant as he was, and still is known in the historical region of Normandy) invaded England and made himself its king. The Norman Conquest had a dramatic effect on English names. Many, if not most Saxon names, such as Ethelred, died out under the massive influx of French ones. The defeated English soon realised that, if they were to prosper, they would need to mimic their Norman overlords in manners, fashion, speech (French) and of course, names. Since the Royal Court now rang with names such as Alain, Guy, Aeginald and...
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