The name Thornby is of Anglo-Saxon
origin and came from when a family lived in Thornborough found in the counties of Buckinghamshire
and North Yorkshire
. Thornby is a topographic
surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. During the Middle Ages, as society became more complex, individuals needed a way to be distinguishable from others. Toponymic surnames were developed as a result of this need. Various features in the landscape or area were used to distinguish people from one another. In this case the surname was originally derived from the Old English thorn broc
which means that the original bearers of the surname Thornby were named due to their close proximity to the stream by the thorns.
Early Origins of the Thornby family
The surname Thornby was first found in Cumberland
where they held a family seat
at Selsheyd (now known as Selside.) This chapelry, in the parish, union, and ward of Kendal is now in the county of Westmorland
. "The chapel, dedicated to St. Thomas, was erected in lieu of a more ancient edifice, about 1720, by the inhabitants, on a site given by William Thornburgh, Esq.; and was rebuilt on an enlarged scale in 1837, at an expense of about £600." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Thornby family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thornby research.Another 184 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1313, 1391, 1394, 1401, 1414, 1401, 1404, 1416, 1419, 1563, 1593, 1551, 1641, 1593, 1603, 1617, 1588 and 1603 are included under the topic Early Thornby History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Thornby Spelling Variations
Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations
were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Thornby family name include Thornborough, Thornbury, Thornberry, Thornborrowe, Thornbery, Thornburgh and many more.
Early Notables of the Thornby family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir John Thornbury; and Walter de Thornbury (died 1313), an English-born statesman and cleric probably born in Herefordshire
who held the office of Lord Chancellor of Ireland
. William Thornburgh was Member of Parliament for Westmorland
in 1391, 1394, 1401 and 1414. Roland Thornburgh... Another 93 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Thornby Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Thornby family to Ireland
Some of the Thornby family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 45 words (3 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 Thornby family to the New World and Oceana
For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland
, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Thornby surname or a spelling variation of the name include :
Thornby Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Joseph Thornby, aged 32, who landed in Mobile, Ala in 1871 CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
Contemporary Notables of the name Thornby (post 1700)
- William J. Thornby, American politician, Member of South Dakota State Senate 41st District, 1893-94 CITATION[CLOSE]
The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, August 18) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
The Thornby 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: Spectemur agendo
Motto Translation: Let us be judged by our acts