Keigwyn History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
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The rugged hills and Moors of Wales was the birthplace of the name Keigwyn. Originally, this surname began its life as a nickname for a person who was nicknamed "white dog" from the Old English word "Kei" - a dog, and "gwyn" - white: and thus figuratively, a hero. Nicknames form a broad category surnames, and were frequently the result of a spontaneous reaction to a particular occasion or event; thus their meanings were significant to the original bearers and their contemporaries, but baffle modern scholars who lack knowledge of the original context of the nickname.
Early Origins of the Keigwyn family
The surname Keigwyn was first found in Cardiganshire (Welsh: Sir Aberteifi), the former Kingdom of Ceredigion, created as a county in 1282 by Edward I, and located on the West coast of Wales, where they held a family seat.
The name rose to prominence when they moved to Cornwall and settled at Mousehole where the first on official record was Carne Keigwin of Mousehole about 1380. "An ancient Cornish family. Mr Dixon derives the surname from Welsh and Cornish roots signifying White Dog, and the three greyhounds argent in the arms seem to allude to this derivation." 
Early History of the Keigwyn family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Keigwyn research. Another 182 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1410, 1432, 1595, 1658, 1646, 1641, 1716, 1682, 1700, 1595, 1639, 1700, 1682, 1690, 1605, 1647, 1665 and 1666 are included under the topic Early Keigwyn History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Keigwyn Spelling Variations
Compared to other ancient cultures found in the British Isles, the number of Welsh surnames are relatively few, but there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations. These spelling variations began almost as soon as surname usage became common. Clerks would then spell the names as they heard them, causing many different variations. Later, many Welsh names were recorded in English. This transliteration process was extremely imprecise since the Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh used many sounds the English language was not accustomed to. Finally, some variations occurred by the individual's design: a branch loyalty within a family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The Keigwyn name over the years has been spelled Keigwin, Keegwin, Keggwin, Keggin, Keigwine, Keigwyn, Kedgwynn and many more.
Early Notables of the Keigwyn family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was John Keigwin (1641-1716) Cornish antiquary, born at Mousehole, notable for 'Mount Calvary' in Cornish, and his translations of William Jordan's 'Creation to Flood' from Cornish to English in 1682. In 1700, Miss Juliana Keigwin of Mousehole married Thomas Clutterbuck, commanding officer of the Scilly Isles. " His direct ancestor was 'Jenkin Keigwin, gent.,' who was killed by a cannon-ball when the Spaniards landed at Mousehole on 23 July 1595. His father was Martin Keigwin, and he was the only son by a second marriage. His mother was Elizabeth, second daughter of...
Another 205 words (15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Keigwyn Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Keigwyn family
Many Welsh joined the great migrations to North America in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Like their Scottish and Irish neighbors, many Welsh families left their homeland hoping to find hope and prosperity in a land that the English did not exercise a tight rule over. Those Welsh immigrants that successfully traveled to North America went on to make significant contributions to the rapid development of both Canada and the United States in terms of the settling of land and the establishment of industry. They also added to the rich cultural heritage of both countries. An examination into the immigration and passenger lists has discovered a number of people bearing the name Keigwyn: Richard Keigwin who landed in North America in 1699.
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- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.