The notable Simnett family arose among the Cornish People
, a race with a rich Celtic heritage and an indomitable fighting spirit who inhabited the southwest of England
. While surnames were well-known during the English medieval period, Cornish People
originally used only a single name. The way in which hereditary surnames
came into common use is interesting. As the population of medieval Europe multiplied, people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Under the Feudal
System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Patronymic
surnames were derived from given names and were the predominant type of surname among the Celtic peoples of Britain. However, the people of Cornwall
provide a surprising exception to this rule, and patronymic
surnames are less common among them than other people of Celtic stock, such as their Welsh
neighbors. This is due to the greater influence of English bureaucracy and naming practices in Cornwall
at the time that surnames first arose. This type of surname blended perfectly with the prevailing Feudal
System. One feature that is occasionally found in Cornish surnames of this type is the suffix -oe or -ow; this is derived from the Cornish plural suffix -ow. is a patronymic surname that came from the ancient Hebrew personal name Shimon,
meaning to hearken.
Early Origins of the Simnett family
The surname Simnett was first found in Devon
and in Cornwall
, where the family held a family seat
since ancient times.
Simeon or Symeon of Durham ( fl. 1130), was an English historian, a monk of Durham, being thirty-eighth on his own list of the monks of that house. Saint Simeon Stock (1165?-1265), was general of the Carmelite friars and is said to have been born in Kent of noble parents about 1165. "From his earliest years he was devoted to religion, and, according to the legend, owed his surname to the fact that from his twelfth year he lived a hermit's life in the trunk or stock of a tree for twenty years. " CITATION[CLOSE]
Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
Simeon of Warwick (died 1295), was an English historian who became a Benedictine monk at St. Mary's, York, and in 1258 was elected abbot.
Early History of the Simnett family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Simnett research.Another 113 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1178, 1273, 1379, 1388, 1623, 1665, 1640, 1687, 1617, 1692, 1623, 1665, 1617, 1692, 1614, 1624, 1528, 1586, 1487, 1525, 1475, 1487 and are included under the topic Early Simnett History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Simnett Spelling Variations
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 Symons, Symonds, Symond, Simmins, Simins, Simmonds, Simonds, Simond, Simmons, Simon, Simmon, Simmen, Symon and many more.
Early Notables of the Simnett family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family at this time was John Symons, M.P. for Helston in 1388; Thomas Simon (c.
1623-1665), English medalist, born in Yorkshire
who studied engraving under Nicholas Briot; Samuel Simmons (1640-1687), an English printer, best known as the first publisher of several works by John Milton; Abraham Simon (1617-1692?), an English medalist to the Royal Mint with his brother, Thomas Simon (c.
1623-1665); and Richard Symonds (1617-1692?), an English Royalist and antiquary, best known for his eye-witness diary of the events of the First English Civil War. Sir George Simeon was an English landowner and politician, Member of Parliament... Another 114 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Simnett Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Simnett family to Ireland
Some of the Simnett family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 62 words (4 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 Simnett family to the New World and Oceana
Investigation of immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Simnett:
Simnett Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Maud E Simnett, aged 48, originally from Somerleyton, England, arrived in New York in 1920 aboard the ship "Mauretania" from Southampton, England CITATION[CLOSE]
"New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J6FM-5QS : 6 December 2014), Maud E Simnett, 26 Jun 1920; citing departure port Southampton, arrival port New York, ship name Mauretania, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
Simnett Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- George Simnett, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Duke Of Bronte" in 1849 CITATION[CLOSE]
State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The DUKE OF BRONTE 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849DukeOfBronte.htm
Contemporary Notables of the name Simnett (post 1700)
- Roger Simnett, Australian Professor, Australian School of Business, UNSW, Sydney, Australia
- Mark Simnett, British drummer, known for his work on Hex, the debut album by British post-rock band Bark Psychosis
Simnett Family Crest Products
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- ^ "New York Passenger Arrival Lists (Ellis Island), 1892-1924," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J6FM-5QS : 6 December 2014), Maud E Simnett, 26 Jun 1920; citing departure port Southampton, arrival port New York, ship name Mauretania, NARA microfilm publication T715 and M237 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
- ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) The DUKE OF BRONTE 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849DukeOfBronte.htm