Barnabas History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Anglo-Saxon name Barnabas comes from when the family resided in Barnby Hall, in the North Riding of Yorkshire. The name of that place is derived from the Old English personal name Beornwald, which comes from the words beorn, meaning young warrior, and wald, meaning rule. [1] Today, Barnby is also a village and civil parish in the Waveney district of Suffolk.

Early Origins of the Barnabas family

The surname Barnabas was first found in Yorkshire, where the earliest record is at Barnby Hall, in the parish of Calthorne, in the east riding of Yorkshire. [2] "The township anciently belonged to a family of the same name; mention occurring of Robert de Barneby, who held the lands under Peter de Mauley, lord of Mulgrave." [3]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 lists: Richard de Barneby in Yorkshire; and Henry de Barneby in Lincolnshire. Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed: Thomas de Barmby; and Thomas de Barnby. [4]

Barnby in the North Riding of Yorkshire was an ancient family seat. "The township anciently belonged to a family of the same name; mention occurring of Robert de Barneby, who held the lands under Peter de Mauley, lord of Mulgrave." [3]

Early History of the Barnabas family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Barnabas research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1000 and 1550 are included under the topic Early Barnabas History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Barnabas Spelling Variations

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 Barnabas include Barneby, Barnby, Barnaby, Bernaby, Burnaby and many more.

Early Notables of the Barnabas family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Barnabas Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Australia Barnabas migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Barnabas Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Barnabas Keenan, (Bernard), (b. 1819), aged 17, English publican who was convicted in Liverpool, Merseyside, England for 14 years, transported aboard the "Bengal Merchant" on 4th August 1836, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1870 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Barnabas (post 1700) +

  • Robert Barnabas Brough (1828-1860), English writer
  • Barnabas Oley (1602-1686), English churchman and academic
  • Barnabas Carver, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Dutchess County, 1805-06
  • Barnabas Case (1799-1880), American Democrat politician, Distiller; Postmaster; Member of Michigan State Senate 2nd District, 1851-52 [6]
  • Barnabas Bidwell (1763-1833), American politician, Representative from Massachusetts 12th District, 1805-07; Resigned 1807; Massachusetts State Attorney General, 1807-10 [7]
  • Barnabas Payen, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Dutchess County, 1792-93 [8]
  • Barnabas Eldridge, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly from Schoharie County, 1820-21 [9]
  • Barnabas Burns, American politician, Delegate to Ohio State Constitutional Convention from Richland County, 1873 [10]


The Barnabas 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: Virtute non vi
Motto Translation: By virtue not by force.


  1. ^ Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges, A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8)
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 7th October 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/bengal-merchant
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 26) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  7. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 28) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  8. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 22) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  9. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 4) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  10. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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