Kinnaer History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

In Scottish history, few names go farther back than Kinnaer, whose ancestors lived among the clans of the Pictish tribe. The ancestors of the Kinnaer family lived in the lands of Kinnear, which lie near Wormit in the county of Fife. [1] The name literally means "chieftain." [2]

Early Origins of the Kinnaer family

The surname Kinnaer was first found in Fife, from the lands of Kin-near near Wormit. The family descend from "Symon, son of Michael, [who] gave a carucate of land of Cathelai to the church of St. Andrews. His grant was confirmed by King Malcolm IV, and King William confirmed the grant of Chathelach, with common pasture for twenty-four beasts, and eighty sheep, which Symon, son of Michael gave, and his son Alan confirmed. The descendants of Symon took the name of Kinnear, and were the vassals of the Priory of St. Andrews in the lands of Kathlac, etc., which they held till the beginning of the eighteenth century. Reginald de Kener witnessed gift of one mark of silver annually by Alexander, earl of Buchan to the Abbey of Arnbroath, c. 1250." [3]

Early History of the Kinnaer family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kinnaer research. Another 143 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1170, 1216, 1296, 1543, 1600, 1602, 1536, 1574, 1543, 1574, 1477, 1439, 1457, 1782, 1830, 1782, 1802, 1813, 1814 and 1818 are included under the topic Early Kinnaer History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Kinnaer Spelling Variations

Although Medieval Scotland lacked a basic set of spelling rules, which meant that scribes recorded names according to their sounds it was not uncommon for the names of a father and son to be recorded differently. As a result, there are many spelling variations of Scottish single names. Kinnaer has been written Kinnear, Kynnier, Kynnair, Kenneir, Kinner, Kinnier, MacEnir and many more.

Early Notables of the Kinnaer family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Petrus Kyrior who was elected common councillor of Aberdeen, 1477; John de Kynor who was admitted burgess of Aberdeen, 1439; and Adam Kynnor in 1457. [3] Sir John MacDonald Kinneir (1782-1830), was Lieutenant-Colonel H.E.I.C.S., traveller and diplomatist, born at Carnden, Linlithgow, on 3 Feb. 1782, and was the son of John Macdonald, comptroller of customs at Borrowstounness, and Mrs. Cecilia Maria Kinneir. "In 1802 he was nominated to a cadetship by Sir William Bensley, under the name...
Another 84 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kinnaer Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Kinnaer family to Ireland

Some of the Kinnaer family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Kinnaer family

Thousands of Scots left their home country to travel to Ireland or Australia, or to cross the Atlantic for the North American colonies. The difficult crossing was an enormous hurdle, but those who survived found freedom and opportunity in ample measure. Some Scots even fought for their freedom in the American War of Independence. This century, their ancestors have become aware of the illustrious history of the Scots in North America and at home through Clan societies and other organizations. Passenger and immigration lists show many early and influential immigrants bearing the name Kinnaer: John and Elizabeth Kinner settled in New York in 1774; with sons Nicholas and Anthony and daughter Elizabeth; David Kinnear arrived in Philadelphia in 1844.



  1. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  2. ^ Sims, Clifford Stanley The Origin and Signification of Scottish Surnames. 1862. Print.
  3. ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)


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