Dennistoun History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Dennistoun surname is a patronymic, created from the personal name Dennis; thus the name originally meant "son of Dennis." Dennis comes ultimately from the Latin Dionysius.

Early Origins of the Dennistoun family

The surname Dennistoun was first found in Yorkshire where the first record of the name was found in 1212. Richard Dionys of Yorkshire, was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. [1]

Some were found at the chapelry of Speeton in the East Riding of Yorkshire. "This township, which belongs to W. J. Denison, Esq., comprises about 1820 acres of land, and commands a beautiful view of the shore from Scarborough to Flamborough Head: the village is situated on an eminence north-east of the road from Bridlington to Scarborough." [2]

However, there is much dispute over the origin of the name. Some claim the name was derived from the Scottish Dennistouns. [3] Yet the author admits that name was also found in Norfolk and Suffolk in early times too. Thomas Denison, one of the Society of Merchant Adventurers, was buried in Leeds parish church in 1708.

Early History of the Dennistoun family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dennistoun research. Another 70 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1275, 1381, 1694, 1629, 1590, 1714, 1782 and are included under the topic Early Dennistoun History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dennistoun Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Dennison, Denison, Denson, Dennistoun, Dennistown, Dennisone and many more.

Early Notables of the Dennistoun family (pre 1700)

Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dennistoun Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Dennistoun family to Ireland

Some of the Dennistoun family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 58 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Dennistoun migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Dennistoun Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Margaret Dennistoun, aged 36, who landed in New York in 1775 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Dennistoun (post 1700) +

  • Alexander Dennistoun of Golfhill (1790-1874), wealthy Scottish merchant
  • James R. Dennistoun, New Zealand alpinist in charge of the mules on board the Terra Nova on her way to Antarctica for the British Antarctic Expedition (1910-1913), eponym of Dennistoun Glacier
  • James Dennistoun of Dennistoun (1803-1855), Scottish advocate, antiquary and art collector


The Dennistoun 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: Adversa virtute repello
Motto Translation: I repel adversity by virtue.


  1. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ 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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