In the mountains of Scotland's west coast and on the Hebrides
islands, the ancestors of the Downkend family were born. Their name comes from the Gaelic personal name
"Donnchad," which means "brown warrior". The personal name Donnchad
is composed of two elements; "donn," which means "brown" and "cath," which means "warrior".
Early Origins of the Downkend family
The surname Downkend was first found in Northumberland
, where they held great estates but were a branch of the distinguished Scottish Clan
of Duncan who were originally of Iona
in the Hebrides
, but changed their name and continued to use the basic Coat of Arms of the Duncan Clan.
Early History of the Downkend family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Downkend research.Another 123 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Downkend History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Downkend Spelling Variations
In various documents Downkend has been spelled Since medieval scribes still spelled according to sound, records from that era contain an enormous number of spelling variations
. Donkin, Downkin, Donking, Donken, Downken and others.
Early Notables of the Downkend family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Downkend Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Downkend family to the New World and Oceana
The descendants of the Dalriadan families who made the great crossing of the Atlantic still dot communities along the east coast of the United States and Canada. In the American War of Independence
, many of the settlers traveled north to Canada as United Empire Loyalists. Clan
societies and highland games have allowed Canadian and American families of Scottish descent to recover much of their lost heritage. Investigation of the origins of family names on the North American continent has revealed that early immigrants bearing the name Downkend or a variant listed above include: Patrick Donkin arrived in Pennsylvania in 1820.
The Downkend 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: Disce pati
Motto Translation: Learn to suffer.