Colbren History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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The Colbren family name is linked to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from the Old Norse personal name Kolbrandr and the Old Swedish forename Kolbrand. The names Colbrand and Colebran appeared in the Domesday Book survey of 1086.  Many Scandinavian personal names were left in the British Isles as a legacy of the Viking raids which plagued the coastal regions of Britain from the 8th to 10th centuries, and many of these eventually became Anglo-Saxon surnames.
Early Origins of the Colbren family
The surname Colbren was first found in Sussex where the family held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.
Colbrand (Colbron) was a legendary giant from English folklore. Some sources claim he was a Viking giant. According to legend, Guy of Warwick defeated him to prove his love for Lady Felice. The legend dates back to at least the 13th century and was even popular into Shakespearean times when he mentions Colbrand in Henry VIII and King John.
By the 18th century, Colbrand became a nickname for someone of considerable size or strength.
Early History of the Colbren family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Colbren research. Another 85 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1544, 1600, 1571, 1572, 1597, 1627, 1640, 1664 and 1667 are included under the topic Early Colbren History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Colbren Spelling Variations
Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Colbren include Colbrond, Colbron, Colbrand, Colbran and others.
Early Notables of the Colbren family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: James Colbrand (c. 1544-1600), of Chichester, Sussex, an English politician, Member of the Parliament for Ludgershall in 1571 and 1572 and for Appleby 1597. Continuing the line was Sir John...
Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Colbren Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Colbren family
Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Colbren were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: William and his wife Marjorie Colbron who settled in Salem Massachusetts in 1630.
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- ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print