|Ewing is quite a numerous surname in
Ireland; in 1866 there were 27 births registered for it.
Including a few for the synonyms Ewings and Ewin, while
in 1890 the number was 24, in both cases almost entirely
in Ulster. In that province it has since the
seventeenth century been especially associated with the
counties of Donegal, Derry, Tyrone and Antrim. Many
Ewing wills are recorded for the dioceses comprising
these northern areas. The "census" of
1659 is one of the earliest Irish documents to include
the name - in it Alexander Ewing appears as one of the
leading inhabitants of Letterkenny, Co. Donegal. A
few years later it appears frequently in the Hearth Money
Rolls for that county. It is probable that Dublin
Ewings, such as the notable printing and publishing
family of the mid-eighteenth century, came to the capital
from the north.
The origin of the name is interesting. According to Reaney it goes back to the Greek eugenes (well-born), cognate with the Gaelic Irish eoghan. Mac GiollaDomhnaigh, too, states that Ewing, also found as MacEwing, is a form of the well known Scottish name MacEwen, gaelice Mac Eoghain, i.e. our Irish MacKeown.