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

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

The Anglo-Saxon name Cobain comes from when the family resided in Cobham Kent, a village and civil parish in the Gravesham District that dates back to before the Norman Conquest. The first record of the village was in 939 where it was listed as Cobba hammes mearce. Cobham, Surrey was established later as the first record of the village in the Borough of Elmbridge was in the Domesday Book of 1086 where it was listed as Covenham. Both places have the same origin as in "enclosure or homestead of a man called Cobba," having derived from the Old English personal name + hamm or ham. [1]

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Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Cobain include Cobham, Cobbam, Cobban and others.

First found in Kent where Henry de Cobham, 1st Baron Cobham (c. 12601339) was the oldest Baron of Cobham created in 1313. His father John de Cobham of Cobham, Kent, and of Cowling or Cooling, Kent (died c. 1300) was Sheriff of Kent, Constable of Rochester and Chief Baron of the Exchequer. This line would carry on until 1951 when Robert Disney Leith Alexander, 16th Baron Cobham died. However, there were three other creations of the Barons of Cobham at similar times located in Runham, Sterborough and again in Kent. About the same time, Thomas Cobham was Archbishop of Canterbury-elect in 1313 and later Bishop of Worcester.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cobain research. Another 177 words(13 lines of text) covering the years 1313, 1260, 1339, 1307, 1408, 1381, 1332 and 1398 are included under the topic Early Cobain History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 171 words(12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cobain Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:

Cobain Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century


  • William Cobain, who came to Philadelphia in 1860
  • William Cobain, aged 25, who landed in America from Dublin, in 1899

Cobain Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century


  • Marguerite Cobain, aged 26, who settled in America, in 1905
  • Wm Cobain, aged 26, who emigrated to America from Glasgow, Scotland, in 1909
  • Daniel Cobain, aged 40, who settled in Brooklyn, NY., USA, in 1910
  • Leila Helen Cobain, aged 19, who emigrated to the United States from Bendmomouth, England, in 1912
  • Thomas Cobain, aged 17, who emigrated to the United States from Carrickmore, Ireland, in 1914


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  • Kurt Donald Cobain (1967-1994), American musician, singer, guitarist, and songwriter


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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: Concordia
Motto Translation: Concord.

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  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

Other References

  1. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  2. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  3. Humble, Richard. The Fall of Saxon England. New York: Barnes and Noble, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-88029-987-8).
  4. Sanders, Joanne McRee Edition. English Settlers in Barbados 1637-1800. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  5. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  6. Crozier, William Armstrong Edition. Crozier's General Armory A Registry of American Families Entitled to Coat Armor. New York: Fox, Duffield, 1904. Print.
  7. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  8. Markale, J. Celtic Civilization. London: Gordon & Cremonesi, 1976. Print.
  9. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  10. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  11. ...

The Cobain Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Cobain 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 29 April 2014 at 11:03.

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