MacConheenay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
MacConheenay is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. MacConheenay is a name that comes from the given name Robert, which is adapted from the Norman personal name Radbode. This latter name is composed of the Germanic elements rad, meaning counsel or advice, and bodo, meaning message or tidings.
Early Origins of the MacConheenay family
The surname MacConheenay was first found in Suffolk where "this ancient family who have resided at Bramfield for several centuries, claim a Norman descent."  Following the Norman descent deeper, we found "Hugh Rabace in Normandy 1180-95 and Gerard Rabes there in 1198."  However, the family was clearly in England about the same time: "Robert Rabaz gave Kenilworth or Chillingworth Church, Northamptonshire to De la Pré Abbey, which gift was confirmed by Henry II. [his reign: 5 March 1133-6 July 1189]"  St. Andrew's Church, Bramfield is a 13th century church which has ledger slabs of members of the Rabett and Nelson families.
Early History of the MacConheenay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our MacConheenay research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1298, 1313, 1316 and 1467 are included under the topic Early MacConheenay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
MacConheenay Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Rabbit, Rabett, Rabit, Rabbitt and others.
Early Notables of the MacConheenay family (pre 1700)
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early MacConheenay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the MacConheenay family
For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name MacConheenay or a variant listed above were: Thomas Rabbetts, a bonded passenger who came to America in 1753; Michael Rabbit who settled in Philadelphia in 1851; and John Rabbit, who arrived in Indiana sometime between 1853 and 1855..
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- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)