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Origins Available: English, Scottish


The distinguished surname Inis emerged among the industrious people of Flanders, which was an important trading partner and political ally of Britain during the Middle Ages. As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish and English nations, many Flemish migrants settled in Britain. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, 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. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Flemish surnames of this type frequently are prefixed by de la or de le, which mean of the or from the. The Inis family originally lived in either of the places called Ince in Cheshire and Lancashire, in the settlement of Innes in Cornwall, or in the barony of Innes in Urquhart. The surname Inis belongs to the category of habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.

Early Origins of the Inis family


The surname Inis was first found in Morayshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.

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Early History of the Inis family

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Early History of the Inis family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Inis research.
Another 165 words (12 lines of text) covering the year 1296 is included under the topic Early Inis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Inis Spelling Variations

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Inis Spelling Variations


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 Innes, Innis (Gaelic), Innice, Inniss and others.

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Early Notables of the Inis family (pre 1700)

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Early Notables of the Inis family (pre 1700)


More information is included under the topic Early Inis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Migration of the Inis family to the New World and Oceana

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Migration of the Inis family to the New World and Oceana


Early North American immigration records have revealed a number of people bearing the name Inis or a variant listed above: Alexander Innes settled in New England in 1651; Simon Innis settled in Virginia in 1754; along with Robert; James Innes settled in Barbados in 1716.

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The Inis Motto

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The Inis 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: Prudentia et vi
Motto Translation: Be faithful.


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Inis Family Crest Products

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Inis Family Crest Products



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