The name Fannay is of Anglo-Saxon
origin and came from when the family lived near a marsh or swamp. Another name for wetlands is fen,
in the Old English fenn,
from which this name is derived. There are two place-names that may serve as sources for the name as well: Fen, in Lincolnshire
, and Venn, in Devon.
Early Origins of the Fannay family
The surname Fannay was first found in Devon
, where the family held a family seat
from early times. The origins of the name make it likely that several branches of the Fannay family emerged independently in different areas during the Middle Ages. The earliest known bearer of the name was Godwin de la Fenna, who was recorded in the Pipe Rolls
Early History of the Fannay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fannay research.Another 273 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1176, 1185, 1190, 1199, 1297, 1639, 1637, 1723, 1615, 1987, 1687, 1586, 1650, 1641 and 1650 are included under the topic Early Fannay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Fannay Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred
years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon
surnames like Fannay are characterized by many spelling variations
. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Fannay include: Fenn, Fenne, Fennoy, Fann, Fan, Venn, Fen and others.
Early Notables of the Fannay family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir Richard Venn or Fenn (died 1639), an English merchant and politician, Lord Mayor of London in 1637; John Fenn (died May 1723), an early 18th century English pirate who sailed with Captain Bartholomew Roberts; John Fenn (d. December 1615), an English Roman... Another 51 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Fannay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Fannay family to the New World and Oceana
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Fannay or a variant listed above: Richard Fenn, who settled in Virginia in 1623; Richard Fenn, who immigrated to New England
in 1635; Charles Fann, who came to Maryland in 1663; Joshua Fenn, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682.