Jennins History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the name Jennins began when it was derived from The name Jennins is derived from the personal name John, or perhaps more accurately from several diminutions of the name John, such as Jan, Jon, or Jen. [1]

Patronymic surnames belong to the larger category of surnames, known as hereditary surnames, and they arose out of the vernacular and religious given name traditions. In the religious naming tradition, which was developed later than the vernacular tradition, surnames were bestowed in honor of religious figures or church officials. In Europe, the Christian Church was one of the most powerful influences on the formation of given names. Personal names derived from the names of saints, apostles, biblical figures, and missionaries are widespread in most European countries. In the Middle Ages, they became increasingly popular because people believed that the souls of the deceased continued to be involved in this world. They named their children after saints in the hope that the child would be blessed or protected by the saint. John, of course, is derived from John the Baptist, who was born in order to announce Christ's coming.

Early Origins of the Jennins family

The surname Jennins was first found in Sussex where Roger Jonyng was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of 1296. A few years later in 1327, the Subsidy Rolls for Worcestershire listed Walter Jannen and Richard Janyns in 1327. In the same year, John Janyng was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex. From these early entries, we must look over 100 years later to find Thomas Jenyn in the Feet of Fines for Sussex in 1428. [2]

Two other sources had interesting entries with spellings that have fallen out of favour. The Register of the University of Oxford includes John Genens, or Jenens, citizen of Oxford in 1573 and Francis Jenance, or Jennens, or Jenens in the same year. In Norfolk, Thomas Jennyns was registered these 13 Elizabeth (during the 13th year of Elizabeth I's reign) [3]

Early History of the Jennins family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jennins research. Another 275 words (20 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1332, 1508, 1731, 1819, 1610, 1571, 1450, 1523, 1499, 1509, 1567, 1591, 1567, 1570, 1660, 1619, 1668, 1642, 1668, 1660, 1717, 1710, 1717, 1636, 1693, 1663, 1740, 1745 and are included under the topic Early Jennins History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jennins Spelling Variations

The Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules, and therefore, Breton surnames have many spelling variations. Latin and French, which were the official court languages, were also influential on the spelling of surnames. The spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules. Therefore, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England after the Norman Conquest, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. The name has been spelled Jennings, Jenings, Jennins, Jennyns, Jennens, Jennynge, Jennynges, Jenyns and many more.

Early Notables of the Jennins family (pre 1700)

Notable of this family during the Middle Ages was Sir Stephen Jenyns (c.?1450-1523), English wool merchant from Wolverhampton who became Sheriff of London in 1499, before becoming Lord Mayor of London in 1509. Saint Edmund Gennings (1567-1591), was an English Catholic martyr, who was executed during the English Reformation. He was born in 1567 at Lichfield and brought up in the Protestant religion. He became a page in the service of Richard Sherwood, a Catholic gentleman, who afterwards went to Rheims and took holy orders. [4] John Gennings (c. 1570-1660), was an Englishman who was converted to Catholicism through the martyrdom of his...
Another 124 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jennins Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Jennins family to Ireland

Some of the Jennins family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 66 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Jennins migration to the United States +

Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Jennins were among those contributors:

Jennins Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • O B Jennins, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1855 [5]

New Zealand Jennins migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Jennins Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • William Jennins, who landed in Nelson, New Zealand in 1842 aboard the ship Morgan


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print
  4. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  5. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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