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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Kneebone family come from? What is the English Kneebone family crest and coat of arms? When did the Kneebone family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Kneebone family history?


Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since 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, 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, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Kneebone, Knebone and others.

First found in Cornwall where they held a family seat early in their history.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kneebone research. Another 153 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1469, 1623, 1642, 1681, 1692, and 1796 are included under the topic Early Kneebone History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Kneebone Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


A look at the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Kneebone:

Kneebone Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Joseph Kneebone, who sailed to Barbados in 1684

Kneebone Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Robert Kneebone came to America in 1753

Kneebone Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • John and Elizabeth Kneebone, who arrived in New York in 1842
  • Elizabeth Kneebone, aged 20, arrived in New York, NY in 1842
  • John Kneebone, aged 23, landed in New York, NY in 1842

Kneebone Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century

  • F. Kneebone arrived in Lyttelton, New Zealand aboard the ship "Balaklava" in 1864


  • Rachel Kneebone (b. 1973), English artist
  • Tom Kneebone (1932-2003), Canadian actor and playwright
  • Nova Peris- Kneebone (b. 1971), Australian Olympic athlete
  • Ron Kneebone, former Australian rules footballer
  • Henry Kneebone (1876-1933), Australian politician


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  1. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  2. Skordas, Guest. Ed. The Early Settlers of Maryland an Index to Names or Immigrants Complied from Records of Land Patents 1633-1680 in the Hall of Records Annapolis, Maryland. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1968. Print.
  3. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  4. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  5. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  6. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  7. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  8. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  9. Matthews, John. Matthews' American Armoury and Blue Book. London: John Matthews, 1911. Print.
  10. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  11. ...

The Kneebone Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Kneebone Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 10 December 2012 at 20:44.

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