Cornes History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Gaelic, otherwise known as Early Modern Irish, was used in Ireland from around the year 1200 until the 18th century. It is from this language that we found the first references to the name Cornes as O Ciarain or Mac Ciarain. These names are derived from the word "ciar," which means "black" or "dark brown."

Early Origins of the Cornes family

The surname Cornes was first found in County Mayo (Irish: Maigh Eo) located on the West coast of the Republic of Ireland in the province of Connacht, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Early History of the Cornes family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cornes research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cornes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Cornes Spelling Variations

Many spelling variations of the surname Cornes can be found in the archives. One reason for these variations is that ancient scribes and church officials recorded names as they were pronounced, often resulting in a single person being recorded under several different spellings. The different spellings that were found include Kieran, O'Kieran, Keiran, Keighran, O'Keiran, Kerin and many more.

Early Notables of the Cornes family (pre 1700)

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


United States Cornes migration to the United States +

A great mass of Ireland's native population left the island in the 19th century, seeking relief from various forms of social, religious, and economic discrimination. This Irish exodus was primarily to North America. If the migrants survived the long ocean journey, many unfortunately would find more discrimination in the colonies of British North America and the fledgling United States of America. These newly arrived Irish were, however, wanted as a cheap source of labor for the many large agricultural and industrial projects that were essential to the development of what would become two of the wealthiest nations in the western world. Early immigration and passenger lists indicate many people bearing the Cornes name:

Cornes Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • George Cornes, who arrived in New York in 1831 [1]

New Zealand Cornes migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Cornes Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Glen Cornes, aged 23, a joiner, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Resolute" in 1865
  • Margaret Cornes, aged 24, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Resolute" in 1865
  • E. C. Cornes, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Mary Shepherd" in 1870
  • Harriett Cornes, who arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship "Mary Shepherd" in 1870

Contemporary Notables of the name Cornes (post 1700) +

  • Lee Cornes (b. 1951), English television actor and writer
  • Kane Graham Cornes (b. 1983), former professional Australian rules footballer
  • John Frederick "Jerry" Cornes (1910-2001), English silver and two-time bronze medalist middle distance runner
  • Graham Studley Cornes OAM (b. 1948), former Australian rules footballer and coach
  • Christopher "Chris" Cornes (b. 1986), English former football striker
  • Chad Studley Cornes (b. 1979), retired Australian rules footballer


The Cornes 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: Fidens et constans
Motto Translation: Stand firm on trust.


  1. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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