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

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

The generations and branches of the Thorbourne family share a name that has its roots in the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. The name Thorbourne comes from the baptismal name for the son of Thurburn. This ancient personal name was originally derived from the name of the Saxon God of Thunder, Thor. After the Norman Conquest, the Old English naming system gradually dissolved. Old English names became less common and were replaced by popular continental European names. The earliest surnames in England were found shortly after the Norman Conquest and are of Norman French rather than native English origins.

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Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Thorbourne include Thorburn, Thurburn, Thurbrand, Torburn and others.

First found in Norfolk where Thomas filius Thurbernus (Turberni) was listed 1153-1186. A few years later, Richard Turbern was listed in the Feet of Fines in 1198 and later, Richard Thurubern was listed at Ely in Norfolk in 1277. The name may have been listed in the Domesday Book as Thurbernus, Turbern and Torbern, [1] but it from the Norfolk branch that seems the most prevalent in these early years. In Sussex, the name claims descendancy from Thunder (Thor) or Thunder's Hill at Chittingly. Thor was the name of the ancient Saxon God of Thunder.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thorbourne research. Another 99 words(7 lines of text) covering the years 1197, 1273, 1327, 1607, 1688, 1656 and 1659 are included under the topic Early Thorbourne History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 23 words(2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Thorbourne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Thorbourne or a variant listed above: William Thorburn arrived in Virginia in 1716.

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  1. ^ Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)

Other References

  1. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  2. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  3. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  4. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  5. Ingram, Rev. James. Translator Anglo-Saxon Chronicle 1823. Print.
  6. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  7. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  8. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  9. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  10. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  11. ...

The Thorbourne Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Thorbourne 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 20 June 2013 at 14:08.

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