Breichent History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Breichent family

The surname Breichent was first found in Angus (Gaelic: Aonghas), part of the Tayside region of northeastern Scotland, and present day Council Area of Angus, formerly known as Forfar or Forfarshire, where they held a family seat in the town of Brechin.

"This place derives its name, of Gaelic origin, from its situation on an acclivity rising from the banks of the river South Esk; it is of very considerable antiquity, and was formerly the seat of a diocese, the cathedral of which is now the church of the parish. " [1]

Isaac of Brechin in 1178 was one of the first to use the name as a surname. In their early history they seemed to be closely related to the church and church activities, and frequent mention is made of their relationship with the Bishops of Brechin. Conjecturally this Isaac may have been the spearhead of many of the Norman families invited north by King David I of Scotland about 1130, and granted lands at Brechin. [2]

Sir David Brechin (d. 1321), Lord of Brechin, a royal burgh in Angusshire, was eldest son of Sir David of Brechin, one of the barons of Scotland who attended Edward I into France 1297. "His mother, whose Christian name is not known, was one of the seven sisters of King Robert Bruce, but his father seems to have favoured the English side up to the king's victory at Inverary in 1308, when he retired to his castle of Brechin. "[3]

Much further to the south in St. Ive, Cornwall, England we found this interesting passage: "There was a little king of Wales named Brechan, from whom the district of Brecknock derived its name. This king had twenty-four sons and daughters, who finally took up their residence in various parts of Devonshire and Cornwall, where they lived as hermits; on which account they were considered as holy martyrs, saints, or confessors. One of these, whose name was John, took up his abode in Cornwall, in a parish that has assumed his name." [4]

Early History of the Breichent family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Breichent research. Another 149 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1234, 1296, 1320, 1330, 1471, 1541, 1600 and 1672 are included under the topic Early Breichent History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Breichent Spelling Variations

Spelling and translation were hardly exact sciences in Medieval Scotland. Sound, rather than any set of rules, was the basis for spellings, so one name was often spelled different ways even within a single document. Spelling variations are thus an extremely common occurrence in Medieval Scottish names. Breichent has been spelled Brechin, Breechin, Breichen, Brichan, Brichane, Breching and many more.

Early Notables of the Breichent family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Breichent family

Such hard times forced many to leave their homeland in search of opportunity across the Atlantic. Many of these families settled along the east coast of North America in communities that would become the backbones of the young nations of the United States and Canada. The ancestors of many of these families have rediscovered their roots in the 20th century through the establishment of Clan societies and other patriotic Scottish organizations. Among them: Thomas Breching who landed in North America in 1761.



  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print


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