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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Where did the English Cockayne family come from? What is the English Cockayne family crest and coat of arms? When did the Cockayne family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Cockayne family history?

Cockayne is an ancient Anglo-Saxon name. It was a name given to a person who was a person who was considered a dreamer derived from the Old French word "coquaigne," which referred to an imaginary paradise. Accordingly other references show Cockaigne or Cockayne as a medieval mythical land of extreme luxury as noted in poems like "The Land of Cockaigne."

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One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Cockayne has appeared include Cockayne, Cokayne, Cocaine, Cokayn, Cokein, Cokaigne, Cokkaigne, Cokkayn, Cockayn and many more.

First found in Warwickshire, where many of the family claim descent from Baddesley Ensor, a parish, in the union of Atherstone in the hundred of Hemlingford, which dates back to the Domesday Book [1] where it was listed as Bedeslei and later as Baddesley Endeshower in 1327 [2]. Another branch of the Cockayne (or Cokayne) family settled at Ashbourne, Derbyshire since the twelfth century where they owned the manors of Ashbourne Hall and Pooley Hall until the late 1600s. Today, Cockayne is a hamlet and ridge in North Yorkshire but his village dates back to only 1972 when the 1925 acre Bransdale estate was transferred to the National Trust through National Land Fund. For the most part, the village is owned by the National Trust.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cockayne research. Another 197 words(14 lines of text) covering the years 1193, 1219, 1221, 1228, 1273, 1332, 1661, 1671, 1509, 1547, 1561, 1626, 1613, 1619, 1602, 1661, 1631, 1687, 1658, 1688, 1687, 1716, 1608 and 1684 are included under the topic Early Cockayne History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 235 words(17 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cockayne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Cockayne arrived in North America very early: Mary Cockane who arrived in Maryland in 1674.

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  • Ben Cockayne (b. 1983), English rugby player
  • David Cockayne FRS (1942-2010), English electron microscopist and university professor at the University of Oxford
  • Leonard Cockayne FRS (1855-1934), New Zealand horticulturist awarded the Darwin Medal in 1928
  • Edward Alfred Cockayne (1880-1956), English physician who identified Cockayne syndrome


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The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: En bon espoyr
Motto Translation: In good hope.

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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  2. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  3. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  4. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  5. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  6. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  7. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  8. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  9. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  10. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  11. ...

The Cockayne Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Cockayne Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 17 May 2013 at 11:13.

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