The chronicles of Scottish history reveal that the first people to use the name Kovay were the Strathclyde- Britons
. It was a name for a tender of cattle. The name is an adaptation of the Old English word cuhyrde
, of the same meaning. It derives from the roots, cu
, meaning cow
, and hierde
, meaning herdsman
. The family were "mainly from the ancient barony of Cowie in Kincardineshire." CITATION[CLOSE]
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) CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Early Origins of the Kovay family
The surname Kovay was first found in Kincardineshire
(Gaelic: A' Mhaoirne), a former county on the northeast coast of the Grampian region of Scotland
, and part of the Aberdeenshire
Council Area since 1996. Cowie is a small village "situated at the mouth of the river Cowie, which falls into a bay of that name, forming a small and commodious harbour." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Cowie Castle is a ruined fortress nearby and is thought to have been the site of a royal hunting lodge in the Middle Ages. Cowie Chapel also known as the Chapel of St. Mary and St. Nathalan is a ruined chapel but is one of the oldest surviving structures in Kincardineshire.
One of the first records of the family was Herbert de Cowy who witnessed a charter by Nicholas de Dumfres in 1394. Years later, John Cowy was admitted burgess of Aberdeen in 1505. CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
Early History of the Kovay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kovay research.Another 241 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1040, 1394, 1505, 1600, 1512, 1642 and 1646 are included under the topic Early Kovay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kovay Spelling Variations
Prior to the first dictionaries, scribes spelled words according to sound. This, and the fact that Scottish names were repeatedly translated from Gaelic to English and back, contributed to the enormous number of spelling variations
in Scottish names. Kovay has been spelled Cowie, Cowey, Cowy, Covie, Cowye, Covey, Cowwie, Cowwey, Coavie, Coawie, Kowie, Kowey, Kovey and many more.
Early Notables of the Kovay family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Kovay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kovay family to Ireland
Some of the Kovay family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 166 words (12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kovay family to the New World and Oceana
In such difficult times, the difficulties of raising the money to cross the Atlantic to North America did not seem so large compared to the problems of keeping a family together in Scotland
. It was a journey well worth the cost, since it was rewarded with land and freedom the Scots could not find at home. The American War of Independence
solidified that freedom, and many of those settlers went on to play important parts in the forging of a great nation. Among them: Phillip Cowie settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1834; followed by Thomas in 1859.