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Friday, July 29, 2011

Mago Notes Two

In April of this year I published a post entitled "Mago Notes One."
It related loosely to my paternal great-grandfather Mago William Sheehan. I was motivated to do so by a comment from my cousin Kevin O'Carroll. The facts I have about Mago come from the learned and skilled genealogical work of my sister, Gerry Hook. Still I found that which to me seemed worth saying then, and have more to say now.

This post relates to "Mago Notes One" in that it relates almost entirely to the name, title, or word 'mago:' rather than directly to my paternal great grandfather. I find Mago particularly curiosity arousing as a title or as a given name. I have followed my curiosity in a manner that may seem a pathless wander, but that is my way. I have tended to discover data or implications of marvelous and wonderful happenings and then to forget them. Some I recall years later, others I do not.

Here I intend to record some such implications which I remember just now.

Mago Notes:

There was a book in Hibernia written by Menandro Mago. The book may have been of Gnostic tradition. It may date from the earliest Christian times

"Mahon" and "Magon" may be forms of Mago. There is, or was, a Mahon county in Cork.

""Mane" may be a diminutive of Mago: Mago, the father; Mane, the son.

In Spain you might hear that mago is the singular magi, or that it means wizard. Or that it refers to one of the three wise men bearing gifts to a certain baby.

Perhaps Spain is also the source of a name closely related to Mago, Magon. In my Spanish magon would mean big mago or great mago. Magon is also a Spanish surname. There is a Richard Flores Magon remembered in Mexico as James Connolly is remembered in Ireland.

I have imagined other Magos. For example, Magos who came up from the Persian Gulf into the Mediterranean to greatly disturb ancient Egyptians as the Sea People.

Those Magos certainly were sea people. They became guardians of the Gate of Atlas, what we now know as the Pillars of Hercules. I believe that among them Mago was a title. rather than a name, but among a very similar people it was also a name. It may have referred to a respected or learned man at one time, but among these sea people of the Mediterranean it came to mean judge, governor  commodore.

Elsewhere you may learn that it refers to a member of a hereditary priestly class among the ancient Medes and Persians.

Barca was an influential family who knew Magos and was known by them. Barca is the source of our Presidents first name and for the name of the Spanish city Barcelona.

There is a lot to learn about Mago. They may have been the great tin merchants of the Mediterranean Bronze Age. 

It was Mago I who established a political dynasty of Ancient Carthage whose people wee called Magonids. The Magonid dynasty of Carthage lasted from 550 BC to 340 BC. During that time it was probably the main Phoenician colony. By the way, there was also a Mago II and a Mago III

Hasdrubal was a son of Mago and a long time ruler among the Phoenicians. The name was spoken in Rome.

A fragment of and Old Irish manuscript reads, "I took kingdom here, as a successor of my mother for she was Mara of Murese, daughter of Mago. And what better wife could I have then the daughter of a High King of Ireland.

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