Dinis History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Dinis was brought to England in the wave of migration that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. Dinis is based on the medieval given name, Dennis, which comes from the Greek name Dionysios, which means a follower of the god Dionysius.  
There is also evidence that some of the family originated in Normandy: "Richard, Fulco, Geoffry, Roger, Hugh, Matthew, Robert Daneis of Normandy, 1180-98 (Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae.)" 
Early Origins of the Dinis family
The surname Dinis was first found in Lancashire. Conjecturally, the name came to us from Normandy, from the patron saint of France, St. Denis.  He was Bishop of Parisii (Paris), but was martyred in the Decian persecution of Christians, shortly after 250 AD. Apparently, after he was beheaded by a sword, he picked it up and walked ten kilometers (six miles), preaching a sermon the entire way. After the Norman Conquest of England at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D., the family were granted extensive lands in Lancashire, Yorkshire, Northumberland, Devon and Cornwall.
Early rolls listed the name as a forename and surname as was typical of the times. Early Lincolnshire records show: Dionisius de Chotum; Dionisia; and Denis de Sixlea in the Pipe Rolls of 1176. Other early entries include: Deonisia in the Curia Regis Rolls for Yorkshire in 1212; Denise in the Feet of Fines for Essex in 1321; Deonis in the Subsidy Rolls for Somerset in 1327; Dionis ate Brome in the Subsidy Rolls for Surrey in 1332; Denes; and Walter Denys in the Assize Rolls for Staffordshire in 1272. 
The manor of Lesnewth in Cornwall belonged to the Dennis family in the reign of Charles I., "but it is now the property of E. J. Glynn, Esq. in whose family it has been vested nearly a century." 
In Devon, the Abbey of Ashburton and the adjacent lands were granted to Sir Thomas Dennis, and descended in his family in the 13th century. 
"Dennis is an ancient name in Devonshire. In the reign of Henry II. an influential family of Le Deneis resided at Pancrasweek, in the hundred of Black Torrington, and from them sprang the knightly family of Dennis, of Blagdon and Manaton, and the families of Dennis of Holcomb - Buraell, Colliscombe, etc., in the 16th and 17th centuries (W. A. and W.). Dennis was a Bideford name in the 16th and 17th centuries, Anthony Dennis, of Orleigh, being mayor in the reign of James I., whilst Robert Dennis was a Bideford alderman somewhere about this period." 
Early History of the Dinis family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dinis research. Another 99 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1379, 1500, 1546, 1498, 1477, 1561, 1507, 1554, 1592, 1555, 1591, 1609, 1606, 1660, 1616, 1692, 1660, 1679, 1628, 1693, 1656, 1657, 1734 and 1700 are included under the topic Early Dinis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Dinis Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Dinis were recorded, including Dennis, Denis, Dennys, Dennyss, Denys, Denniss and many more.
Early Notables of the Dinis family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Thomas Denys (d.1498) of Holcombe Burnell; and his son, Sir Thomas Denys (c.1477-1561), English politician and landholder of estates in Devon at the Dissolution of the Monasteries, nine-time Sheriff of Devon between 1507 and 1554, and Member of Parliament for Devon; and his son, Sir Robert Dennis (died 1592) of Holcombe Burnell, Member of Parliament for Devon in 1555 and served as Sheriff of Devon, he founded Livery Dole...
Another 77 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dinis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Dinis family to Ireland
Some of the Dinis family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 55 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Dinis family
The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Dinis arrived in North America very early: Thomas Dennis who settled in Boston in 1630. Edward Dennis settled there also about six years after. Danniel Dennis was banished to Barbados in 1635; Ann Dennis settled in Virginia in 1650.
Contemporary Notables of the name Dinis (post 1700) +
- Edmund Dinis (1924-2010), American politician and prosecutor, Southern District Attorney, Massachusetts (1960-1971)
- Edmund Dinis, American Democratic Party politician, Member of Massachusetts State House of Representatives; Member of Massachusetts State Senate 
- Alfredo Dinis (1917-1945), Portuguese anti-fascist
- Antônio Lino da Silva Dinis (1943-2013), Portuguese-born Brazilian Roman Catholic bishop
- Joaquim António Dinis (b. 1947), former Angolan-Portuguese footballer
- Carlos Dinis, Angolan silver and bronze medalist basketball head coach
- Dinis Martins Vital (b. 1932), former Portuguese footballer
Related Stories +
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Charnock, Richard, Stephen, Ludus Patronymicus of The Etymology of Curious Surnames. London: Trubner & Co., 60 Paternoster Row, 1868. Print.
- ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
- ^ Worth, R.N., A History of Devonshire London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, E.G., 1895. Digital
- ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, December 11) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html