of their eastern Ireland Kingdom of Ulidia at Downpatrick in 1177.
As stated in the now out of copyright year 1893 Dictionary of National Biography, "As the family originally came from Ulidia, the lesser Uladh, or Ulster, the members of it are often called in Irish writings, instead of Mac Donlevy, Ultach, that is Ulsterman, and from this the name Mc Nulty, Mac an Ultaigh, son of the Ulsterman is derived." To a historical certainty, the Mac Donlevy royalty did adopt this nickname Ultach as an agnomen (additional surname), while in asylum in Tir after their 1177 defeat by the forces of de Courcy named to the high Gaelic status of "ollahm leighis" or the official physicians to the O'Donnells dynasty Kings of Tirconnell (variant spelling Tyrconnell and sometimes abbreviated "Tir").
The dynasties of the Ulaid and their territory remaining after the 5th century AD were the Dál Riata in the glens of the land area of the modern County of Antrim in eastern Ulster and later, also, Scotland, the Dál n Araidi in the area of modern Belfast in eastern Ulster and the Dál Fiatach in the land area of the modern Diocese of Down and Connor in eastern Ulster. The map area labeled Northern Uí Néill is the Kingdom of Tir Chonaill.
By the time that the Kingdom of Ulidia fell to the English in the late 12th century, the Kingdom of Tir Chonaill had expanded to include the northern portion of the Kingdom of Ulidia shown on this map.
The chieftain Cú-Ulahd was noted to be as swift footed in combat as the feared Irish Wolf Hound, that the Mac Donlevy and/or Mc Nulty took to battle for successful purpose including the dismounting of their opponents the English's armored cavalry. Hence, according to manifold researchers, the Mc Nulty as a parent house in the branch line leading to the O'Garveys or through the Donlevy house's Cú-Ulahd are also as Irish rulers last of historic record among Ulster's Red Branch royal houses (Irish, the "Craobh Ruadh") of the Kingdom of Ulidia, that is of the "rigdamnai" of that portion of Ireland of the legendary earthen mound building Red Branch Knights of Ulster Finally, some Mc Nulty may, otherwise, be Mac Donlevy or of other septs displaced from Ulidia (kingdom).
Sources besides O'Hart state that the clanna Mac an Ultaigh, its septs and its Anglicization Mac or Mc Nulty evolved during the middle age without the area of the Kingdom of Ulidia, which was again located in the extreme southeast of Ulster province. Neafsey, go so far as to propose that the Mc Nulty are not by that name an actual Irish clanna at all and that the Irish surname Mac or Nic an Ultaigh and, therefore, remotely, its Anglicization Mac or Mc Nulty, arises from an Irish language nickname given during the Middle Ages only to persons who relocated to other portions of Ireland, most notably, again, Tirconnell, from the area of the former Kingdom of Ulidia in extreme southeastern Ulster after its fall.
The Mc Nulty are of the Kingdom's Red Branch royal houses, in their line that later includes the O'Garvey, or the Mc Nulty are of the Cú Uladh sept of the Mac Donlevy branch of the Kingdom's Red Branch royal houses.
In the context of a distinct clan John O'Hart traces the Mc Nulty to the Dál Fiatach group of Ulaid dynasties, who were the last rulers of the Ulaid nation of people and their, by then, greatly reduced Ulahd (province), called Ulidia (kingdom), and to the branching of its O'Garvey royals.They contend that the surname first appeared, instead, in the Kingdom of Tirconnell, which is located in the northwest of Ulster province, which is a portion of Ulster that for centuries thereto had not been the territory of the Ulaid. Tir Chonaill or the land of the O'Donnell) had a land area roughly concurrent with that of the modern County Donegal in the Republic of Ireland. This Irish nickname was "Ultach", for a member of the Uluti tribe, that is the Ulaid Nation or people. Mc Nulty, among other of his supporting arguments, states first under section "Early Ulster (Ulaid, Ulidia, Ultonia) … the name was applied only to those who had left early Ulster.", then at section "Origin of Names" …"Mc Nulty (Mac an Ultaigh, son of the Ulsterman), which is based on the location of their ancestors in early Ulster and their subsequent departure from that location (Appendix 1, p 17)." and, later, "Mc Nulty name was applied only to those Gaelic families who fled Down after 1177 (Table 4, Appendix 4, p 18)".Some sources consider the surnames Connoulty and Kinoulty to be variant Anglicizations of the Irish language Mac and Nic an Ultaigh surname.In researching persons of the Mc Nulty surname or its variants, where either the Mac, Mc or M' prefix has been employed to form such Anglicization of the Irish Mac or Nic an Ultaigh surname, also note that British text sources consistently place all surnames beginning with both the prefixes "Mac" and "Mc" at the alphabetical position of "Mac", as the English language "Mc" is simply the Irish language "Mac", anglicized by contraction.It is pronounced in Gaelic language "Ully" and has been corrupted in English to "ulty". In County Clare and its adjacent County Tipperary in the southwest of the Republic of Ireland, the toponymics Connoulty and Kinoulty are encountered.