Decaen History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient name of Decaen finds its origins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It comes from a name for a deacon, an officer in the church. The occupation appears in the Old French as diacne, in Old English as diacon or deacon, and in Old English as deakne. Alternatively, the name could have been derived "from the name of an ancestor as in 'the son of David.' " [1]

Early Origins of the Decaen family

The surname Decaen was first found in Suffolk where Richard le Diakne was the first record of the family appearing in the Curia Regis Rolls of 1212. A few years later, Richard le Deken(e) was listed in the Assize Rolls for Bedfordshire in 1247 and later in the Assize Rolls for Northumberland in 1256. [2]

As an occupation, "Walter the Deacon was at the compilation of Domesday a tenant in chief in the counties of Gloucester and Essex." [3] [4]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed: Gile Deacon, Norfolk; Richard le Dekene, Norfolk; Adam le Dekene, Somerset; and Peter le Dekne, Cambridgeshire. [1]

Up north in Scotland, the first record of the family was Walter Dekne, burgess of St. John's town of Perth, who had a safe conduct into England for two years, 1291. [5]

Early History of the Decaen family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Decaen research. Another 202 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1212, 1256, 1327, 1327, 1332, 1379, 1697, 1753 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Decaen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Decaen Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Decaen family name include Deakin, Deacon, Deakan, Deakins, Dekne, Diakne and many more.

Early Notables of the Decaen family (pre 1700)

Another 31 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Decaen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Decaen family to Ireland

Some of the Decaen family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Decaen family

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Decaen surname or a spelling variation of the name include : John Deacon who settled in Maine in 1628; and Martha Deacon who settled in Virginia in 1637; Alice Deacon settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1635; Avis Deacon settled in Virginia in 1635.


Contemporary Notables of the name Decaen (post 1700) +

  • Charles Mathieu Isidore Decaen, French Divisional General during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars from 1789 to 1815 [6]


The Decaen 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: In utrumque utroque paratus
Motto Translation: Prepared for both.


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. ^ 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)
  6. ^ Generals Who Served in the French Army during the Period 1789-1815. (Retrieved 2015, February 26) Charles Decaen. Retrieved from http://www.napoleon-series.org/research/c_frenchgenerals.html


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