Show ContentsDennill History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The earliest forms of hereditary surnames in Scotland were the patronymic surnames, which are derived from the father's given name, and metronymic surnames, which are derived from the mother's given name. Scottish patronymic names emerged as early as the mid-9th century. The patronyms were derived from a variety of given names that were of many different origins. The surname Dennill is derived from the ancient name Daniel, which means God has judged. 1

Early Origins of the Dennill family

The surname Dennill was first found in Gloucestershire where Alicia Daniel was one of the first records of the name was found temp. Henry III to Edward I. Simon Danyel was later found in Somerset. 2 "The church [of Beckingon, Somerset] contains the remains of Samuel Daniel, poet-laureate and historian, who died here in 1619." 3

Some of the family were found in Yorkshire in early times. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list: Beatrix Danyell; Robertus Danyell; Thomas Daniell; Oliva Danyl; and Teffan Danyll. 2

"In Devonshire the name of Daniel is now best represented in the Holsworthy district. There was a John Daneyll, of "Brighe broke," in the hundred of Wonford, Devon, in the 13th century." 4

Up in Scotland, the surname recorded in Aberdeen as both a forename and surname. "Daniel, son of Herleuine, witnessed a charter by Uchtred, son of Fergus, lord of Galloway, c. 1166, and another early individual of the name gave origin to the ancient barony of Danzielstoun in the parish of Kilmalcolm. By the Gaels this name was adopted as an equivalent for Donald." 5

Early History of the Dennill family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dennill research. Another 240 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1148, 1198, 1279, 1379, 1562, 1619, 1626, 1646, 1660, 1669, 1681, 1703, 1705, 1718 and 1789 are included under the topic Early Dennill History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dennill Spelling Variations

The frequent translations of surnames from and into Gaelic, accounts for the multitude of spelling variations found in Scottish surnames. Furthermore, the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent because medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules. The different versions of a surname, such as the inclusion of the patronymic prefix "Mac", frequently indicated a religious or Clan affiliation, or even a division of the family. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into Scotland, accelerating accentuating the alterations to various surnames. The name Dennill has also been spelled Daniels, Daniell, Daneil, Danyell, Danel, Daniers, Danyei and many more.

Early Notables of the Dennill family

Notable among the family at this time was John Daniel, a 17th century musician, born in Somerset, England; Samuel Daniel (1562-1619), an English poet and historian famous for his sonnets; Jeffrey Daniel (1626-1681), an English politician, Member of Parliament for Marlborough (1660); John Daniel, (fl. 1681), an English...
Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dennill Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Dennill family

Some of the first North American settlers with Dennill name or one of its variants: Mr. Daniel who settled in Virginia in 1606; fourteen years before the "Mayflower"; another member of the family settled in Virginia in 1622.

The Dennill 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: Nec timeo nec sperno
Motto Translation: I neither fear nor despise.

  1. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  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) on Facebook