in southwestern England
provides the original birthplace of the surname Skawent. As populations grew, people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Unlike most Celtic peoples, who favored patronymic
names, the Cornish predominantly used local
surnames. This was due to the heavy political and cultural influence of the English upon the Cornish People
at the time that surnames first came into use. Local
surnames were derived from where a person lived, held land, or was born. While many Cornish surnames of this sort appear to be topographic surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees, many are actually habitation surnames derived from lost or unrecorded place names. The name Skawent history began in Cornwall
. The name, however, is derived from the Old German word scouwon,
meaning to look,
and indicates that the original bearer lived near a lookout point such as a hill
Early Origins of the Skawent family
The surname Skawent was first found in Cornwall
where they were Lords of the Manor of Melenick in that shire and held a family seat
, some say, before the Norman Conquest
in the year 1066.
Early History of the Skawent family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Skawent research.Another 343 words (24 lines of text) covering the years 1250, 1801, 1595, 1600, 1689, 1640, 1602, 1670, 1644 and 1722 are included under the topic Early Skawent History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Skawent 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 Scawen, Scawan, Scawell and others.
Early Notables of the Skawent family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family at this time was Sir Thomas Scawen of Cashalton; William Scawen (1600-1689), English politician who sat in the House of Commons in 1640 and fought for the Royalist cause in the English Civil War, he was one of the pioneers in... Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Skawent Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Skawent family to the New World and Oceana
A search of the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Skawent: Richard Scawell, who arrived in Barbados in 1680 with his servants; as well as Charles Scawen, who arrived in New England