Sherburn History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The present generation of the Sherburn family is only the most recent to bear a name that dates back to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from having lived in Sherborn, found in the counties of Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Warwickshire, Durham, Lancashire and Yorkshire. The surname Sherburn is a toponymic surname that was originally derived from the Old English word scir, meaning bright and burna simply meaning stream.

Early Origins of the Sherburn family

The surname Sherburn was first found in Dorset where they held a family seat from early times at Sherborne, a market town that dates back to Saxon times. In 864, it was listed as Scireburnan and later as Scireburne in the Domesday Book. The name literally means "place at the bright or clear stream" [1] referring to the adjacent River Yeo. One of the first records there was Wulfsige, a medieval Bishop of Sherborne (c. 885-896.)

Historically, Sherborne was the capital of Wessex, one of the seven Saxon kingdoms of England. Sherborne Castle was built in 1594 by Sir Walter Raleigh on the grounds of the ruined old palace built in the 12th century. The Abbey Church of St Mary the Virgin at Sherborne, or colloquially called Sherborne Abbey was originally a Saxon cathedral (705-1075), then a Benedictine abbey (998-1539), and more recently and after the Dissolution of the Monasteries a parish church.

The parish of Mitton in the West Riding of Yorkshire played an important role in the family's lineage. "It was for many generations chiefly the property of the Sherburnes, of whom Sir John de Sherburne attended Edward III. at the siege of Calais. Stonyhurst, the seat of the family, now occupied as a Roman Catholic college, was probably commenced by Sir Richard Sherburne, who died in 1594, and completed by his son in 1596." [2]

Early History of the Sherburn family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Sherburn research. Another 223 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1794, 1660, 1505, 1686, 1717, 1453, 1536, 1494, 1496, 1499, 1505, 1508, 1536, 1536, 1508, 1536, 1505, 1509, 1494, 1496, 1496, 1505, 1499, 1505, 1520 and 1909 are included under the topic Early Sherburn History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Sherburn Spelling Variations

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Sherburn include Sherborne, Sherburn, Sherburne, Sherbourne, Sherbon and many more.

Early Notables of the Sherburn family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Robert Sherborne (c. 1453-1536), English cleric, Archdeacon of Huntingdon (1494-1496), Dean of St. Paul's (1499-1505); Bishop of Chichester from 1508 to 1536; Sir Richard Sherborne the noted historian; and Robert Sherborne (died 1536), English...
Another 41 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Sherburn Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Sherburn migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Sherburn were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Sherburn Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Sherburn Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mary Sherburn, who settled in Boston in 1763 with her son
Sherburn Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Sherburn, who landed in New York in 1839 [3]
  • Job B Sherburn, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1851 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Sherburn (post 1700) +

  • Beth Marie Sherburn (b. 1991), English singer and songwriter, best known for her 2012 cover of Duran Duran's "Ordinary World"
  • Sherburn Lang (b. 1858), American politician, Member of Vermont State House of Representatives, 1921; Member of Vermont State Senate from Caledonia County, 1923 [4]


The Sherburn Motto +

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Nec timere, nec timide
Motto Translation: Neither rashly nor timidly.


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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