O'Riley family crest and coat of arms

Scroll for info

Meaning of the O'Riley family crest symbols

Bird - Eagle

The eagle symbolizes how early family members were considered people of action, quick-wittedness and a noble nature. When the wings are visible, this can additionally represent 'protection' and the protective powers of the family.


The feathers have been used for centuries to represent family member's characteristics of peace, tranquility, and a sense of calmness. They are a powerful symbol of hope and a reminder of the beauty of life.

Meaning of the O'Riley coat of arms colors


The silver or white color on the coat of arms, (known as 'Argent'), signifies sincerity and peacefulness. It is one of the oldest colors known in ancient heraldry.


The gold color (known as Or) represented the noble standing of a family and also stood as a symbol of generosity and those with a giving nature.

O'Riley name meaning and origin

The family name O'Riley is of Irish origin and is derived from the Gaelic name O'Raghailligh, meaning "descendant of Raghailligh."

History of family crests like the O'Riley coat of arms

Family crests and coats of arms emerged during the Middle Ages, mostly in wider Europe. They were used as a way to identify knights and nobles on the battlefield and in tournaments. The designs were unique to each family and were passed down from generation to generation.

The earliest crests were simple designs, such as a single animal or symbol, but they became more elaborate over time. Coats of arms were also developed, which included a shield with the family crest, as well as other symbols and colors that represented the family's history and achievements.

The use of family crests and coats of arms spread throughout Europe and became a symbol of social status and identity. They were often displayed on clothing, armor, and flags, and were used to mark the family's property and possessions.

Today, family crests and coats of arms are still used as a way to honor and celebrate family heritage.

O'Riley name variations and their meaning

The family name O'Riley has several variations that have emerged over time. One common variation is Riley, which is a simplified version of the original name. Another variation is O'Reilly, which includes an additional "e" before the "i." This variation is often seen in Ireland, where the name has its roots. Additionally, some individuals may choose to drop the apostrophe altogether and spell the name as ORiley or OReilly. These variations may be influenced by personal preference or the desire to simplify the spelling. Another possible variation is Reilly, which removes the "O" or "O'" prefix. This variation is often seen in English-speaking countries outside of Ireland. Overall, the variations of the O'Riley family name reflect the diverse ways in which individuals choose to spell and pronounce their surname.

Find your family crest

Learn how to find your family crest.

Other resources: