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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the English Tallent family come from? What is the English Tallent family crest and coat of arms? When did the Tallent family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Tallent family history?

The Tallent history begins in Cornwall, a rugged coastal region in southwestern England. Quite distinct from Devon, the adjoining county, Cornwall had its own spoken language until the late 18th century. The Tallent history began here. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames were derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Unlike most Celtic peoples, who favored patronymic names, the Cornish predominantly used local surnames. The Tallent family originally lived in the parish of Talland in the county of Cornwall.


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 Tallent, Talent, Tallen, Tallon, Tallant, Talant and others.

First found in Cornwall where they held a family seat from very ancient times, before and after the Norman Conquest in 1066.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Tallent research. Another 75 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1150, 1160, 1180, 1642, 1619, 1708, 1685 and 1663 are included under the topic Early Tallent History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 75 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Tallent Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Tallent family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 103 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


Discovered in the immigration and passenger lists were a number of people bearing the name Tallent:

Tallent Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Richard Tallent, who sailed to Barbados in 1697

Tallent Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Mrs. Tallent settled in Bessie, San Francisco in 1852
  • J. N. W. Tallent arrived in San Francisco in 1853

Tallent Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Mary Tallent sailed to Nova Scotia in 1843
  • Mary Tallent, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1843


  • Elizabeth Tallent (b. 1954), American fiction writer, best known for her short stories
  • Garry Wayne Tallent (b. 1949), American musician and record producer, best known for being the bass player for Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band
  • Claire Tallent (b. 1981), Australian Olympic racewalker
  • Jared Tallent (b. 1984), Australian gold, two-time silver and five-time bronze medalist race walker from Ballarat, Australia


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  1. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  2. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  3. MacAulay, Thomas Babington. History of England from the Accession of James the Second 4 volumes. New York: Harper and Brothers, 1879. Print.
  4. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  5. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
  6. Library of Congress. American and English Genealogies in the Library of Congress. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1967. Print.
  7. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  8. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  9. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  10. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  11. ...

The Tallent Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Tallent Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 13 February 2015 at 11:45.

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