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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

Where did the English Dunke family come from? What is the English Dunke family crest and coat of arms? When did the Dunke family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Dunke family history?

As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish and English nations, many Flemish migrants settled in Britain. The Dunke history starts with such a migration. As the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name. A broad and miscellaneous class of surnames, nickname surnames refers either directly or indirectly to a characteristic of the first person who used the name. They can describe the bearer's favored style of clothing, physical appearance, habits, or character, among other attributes. Flemish names of this type frequently feature the prefixes lile, which meant the. The surname Dunke is a nickname for a quarrelsome person. The surname Dunke is derived from the Old English word dunch, which means a push, a knock, or a bump.


Flemish surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish settlers in England, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Dunk, Dunch, Dunche, Dunke, Dunck and others.

First found in Berkshire, where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dunke research. Another 121 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1508, 1597, 1551, 1623, 1593, 1668, 1621, 1653, 1611, 1602, 1678, 1639, 1680, 1660, 1679, 1680, 1630, 1668, 1654, 1659, 1657, 1719, 1718 and 1711 are included under the topic Early Dunke History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 279 words (20 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dunke Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Dunke, or a variant listed above:

Dunke Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Jacob Dunke, who settled in Philadelphia in 1739
  • Jacob Dunke, aged 38, landed in Pennsylvania in 1739

Dunke Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • R. Dunke, who settled in New York in 1822
  • A Cath Elise Dunke, who arrived in America in 1844


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  1. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  2. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  3. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
  4. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  5. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
  6. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  7. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  8. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  9. Shirley, Evelyn Philip. Noble and Gentle Men of England Or Notes Touching The Arms and Descendants of the Ancient Knightley and Gentle Houses of England Arranged in their Respective Counties 3rd Edition. Westminster: John Bowyer Nichols and Sons, 1866. Print.
  10. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  11. ...

The Dunke Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Dunke Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 1 November 2013 at 10:36.

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