The Hoy Family

The Laighin and M222

The Laighin were the people that gave their name to the province of Leinster in Ireland which is the southeast part of Ireland. Their ruling families were lost to history long before surnames began to be used around 1000 AD. So, we can associate no surnames with them in the study of M222.

They were originally from the midlands in the modern counties of Meath and Kildare and held the royal site of Tara until the Southern ÓNeill took it from them and drove them southeast around the time of Saint Patrick.

Batar trí prímcheinéla i nHére, .i. Féini 7 Ulaith 7 Gáilni .i. Laigin. 
"There were three principal kinships in Ireland: the Féini, the Ulaidh, and the Gáilni, i.e., the Laighin."
-- From an Eighth Century legal tract.

This quote singles out the Connachta/ÓNeills (Féini), the Ulstermen (Ulaidh) and the Laighin as being the most important groups in Ireland. The Táin Bó Cúailnge (Cattle Raid of Cooley) is the main Irish Epic and is about these three groups. Recent archeology has identified very similar structures from the last centuries BC at what are called the Royal sites of these three peoples.

Modern name Ancient name
Knockaulin Dún Ailinne of the Laighin
Tara The most sacred to all three peoples
Navan Fort Emhain Macha of the Ulaidh
Rathcroghan Cruachain of the Connachta

The Royal site of the Laighin (Dún Ailinne), which has very similar figure-of-eight structures to Emhain Macha was in Kildare.

The gradient map of M222 which was produced by the original Trinity College study of 2006 is shown below next to a map of the Iron Age Royal Sites of Ireland.

We can see that the single hotspot outside of the main shaded area on the M222 map to the right corresponds very well with the location of Dún Ailinne which is southwest of Dublin and directly up the river Barrow from the south on the map to the left.


All of the photographs and information about the three generations of the Hoy family on these pages has been gathered by Bob Hoy of Arlington, VA. The information for the book "Story of the Hoy Family" was compiled by Bob Hoy and the artwork was done by Lou Smull. Bob is the son of Frank Hoy from the second generation born in this country and Lou is the grandson of Frank's brother Tom.