Burnete History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

An ancient Scottish tribe called the Boernicians were the ancestors of the first people to use the surname Burnete. It is a name for a person with brown or dark brown. Burnete was a high grade woolen cloth usually of dark-brown color.

Early Origins of the Burnete family

The surname Burnete was first found in Berwickshire an ancient county of Scotland, presently part of the Scottish Borders Council Area, located in the eastern part of the Borders Region of Scotland where they were recorded as a family of great antiquity.

The family seat was at Faringdon, where they held a manor and estates. One of the earliest records found was of Robert Burnett in 1128 but this reference may also refer to a Roger de Burnard who witnessed a charter in the same year at Kelso. In fact, one reference claims that the spelling of Bernard was used until 1409 when Robert Burnett made the change.

Later, an Alexander Burnard or Burnett went north with King Robert I and acquired lands in the forest of Drum. He was also granted the barony of Tulliboyll in Kincardine. [1]

The Clan were hereditary foresters to the King of Scotland. Roger Burnard, Alexander's successor, had four sons, Goufrid, Ralph, Walter, and Richard. The Burnetts of Barns who gave name to Burnetland in the parish of Broughton, claim descent from Robertus de Burneville, during the reign of David I.

Early History of the Burnete family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Burnete research. Another 212 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1128, 1208, 1296, 1596, 1323, 1951, 1615, 1684, 1663, 1664, 1664, 1669, 1674, 1679, 1664, 1669, 1674, 1679, 1679, 1684, 1643, 1715, 1635, 1715, 1688, 1729, 1720, 1728, 1728, 1643, 1715, 1656, 1714 and are included under the topic Early Burnete History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Burnete Spelling Variations

Spelling rules only evolved in the last few centuries with the invention of the printing press and the first dictionaries. Spelling variations are extremely common in names from before that period. Burnete has been spelled Brunette, Burnnet, Burnette, Burnatt, Brunete, Bernett, Burnete, Burnet, Bunett, Bunnet, Bunnett, Bunet, Burnett and many more.

Early Notables of the Burnete family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name during their early history was Alexander Burnet (1615-1684), a Scottish clergyman, Bishop of Aberdeen (1663-1664), Archbishop of Glasgow (1664-1669) and (1674-1679), Chancellor of the University of Glasgow (1664-1669), (1674-1679) and Chancellor of the University of St Andrews (1679-1684); Gilbert Burnet (1643-1715), a Scottish theologian and historian, fluent in Dutch, French, Latin, Greek, and Hebrew, and Bishop of...
Another 61 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Burnete Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Burnete family to Ireland

Some of the Burnete family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 64 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Burnete family

After making their great crossing, many Boernician-Scottish families settled along the east coast of North America. When the War of Independence broke out, United Empire Loyalists moved north to Canada while the rest stayed to fight. The ancestors of many of these Scots still populate the continent. This century, through Clan societies and other Scottish organizations, they began to rediscover their collective national heritage. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Burnete or a variant listed above: Jo and Nicholas Burnett who settled in Virginia in 1635; John Burnett who arrived in Barbados in 1685; the Burnetts who settled in Maryland; Captain Burnet and his wife who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1768.



The Burnete Motto +

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: Virescit vulnere virtus
Motto Translation: Courage grows stronger at the wound.


  1. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)


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