Onyon History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
Brythonic in origin, the name of Onyon came from the rugged landscape of Wales. The name is from the common Welsh personal name Enion. The Old Welsh form of this name was Enniaun, which is ultimately derived from the Latin name Annianus. The name is also associated with the Welsh word "enion," which literally means "anvil" and connotes the qualities of stability and fortitude. Some experts also associate the surname Onyon with the Welsh word "uniawn," which means "upright" or "just." One of the most celebrated bearers of this forename was Einion (or Enyon), a 11th century Welsh warrior-prince and the son of Collwyn. He played a significant role in the legend of the Conquest of Glamorgan by the Normans. It is generally believed that he built Port Eynon castle near Swansea, but evidence of the early castle has been lost. Port Eynon (also spelt Port Einon) still survives today as a village and community in the city and county of Swansea.
Early Origins of the Onyon family
The surname Onyon was first found in Sussex, where they held a family seat from early times. The family name is derived from a very popular Welsh personal name. In the 11th century Einion was a Welsh prince and warrior, son of Collwyn. Prince Einion played a great part in the famous legend of the Conquest of Glamorgan by the Normans. Today Port Eynon (Port Einon) is a village in Swansea, Wales. In England, the personal name can be found in Shropshire as early as 1159, where Ennian filius Gieruero was registered.
Important Dates for the Onyon family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Onyon research. Another 86 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Onyon History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Onyon Spelling Variations
Welsh surnames are relatively few in number, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. There are many factors that explain the preponderance of Welsh variants, but the earliest is found during the Middle Ages when Welsh surnames came into use. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, which often resulted in a single person's name being inconsistently recorded over his lifetime. The transliteration of Welsh names into English also accounts for many of the spelling variations: the unique Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh had many sounds the English language was incapable of accurately reproducing. It was also common for members of a same surname to change their names slightly, in order to signify a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations. For all of these reasons, the many spelling variations of particular Welsh names are very important. The surname Onyon has occasionally been spelled Einion, Ennian, Annian, Anyan, Einion, Ennion, Enions, Inion, Inions, Innion, Innions, Ineon, Eneon, Onion and many more.
Early Notables of the Onyon family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Onyon Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Onyon family to Ireland
Some of the Onyon 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.
Onyon migration to the United States
The Welsh migration to North America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries contributed greatly to its rapid development. These migrants were in search of land, work, and freedom. Those Welsh families that survived the long ocean journey were critical to the development of new industries and factories, and to the quick settlement of land. They also added to an ever-growing rich cultural heritage. A search of the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Onyon:
Onyon Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- Robert Onyon, aged 26, who landed in America in 1635 
- Susanna Onyon, who arrived in Maryland in 1673 
- ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)