Usborne History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Usborne surname itself is thought to be derived from an Old Norse personal name "Asbjorn" made up of "às," meaning "god" and "bjorn," or "bear." The name became Osbern in old English. Bearers of this name also came to Britain from Normandy, and over the centuries have become indistinguishable from those who predated the Norman invasion. "The name is found in England before the Conquest and may be of direct Scandinavian origin. It was also common in Normandy whence it was often brought over by Normans after the Conquest." [1]

Early Origins of the Usborne family

The surname Usborne was first found in Kent where "this family descends from a Kentish branch of the family of Fitz-Osberne, seated in that county early in the reign of Henry VI., when Thomas Osberne appeared to a writ of Quo warranto for the Abbey of Dartford." [2] His grandfather was Richard Fitz-Osberne, or Fitz-Osbert who held a fief from Earl Bigot in 1165. Richard's father was Stephen Fitz-Osbert fl. 1152 was son of William Fitz-Osbert, son of Osberne Fitz-Letard who held lands from Odo of Bayeaux in 1086. [2]

Many bearers of the name were descended from Sarum in Normandy. Confirming this ancient origin another source states the "name occurred in England before the Norman Conquest. It is confined south of a line joining the Humber and the Mersey, and its principal area of distribution takes the form of a belt crossing central England from East Anglia to the borders of Wales. [3] "Several persons bearing it occur in Domesday [Book], as tenants in chief in different counties;" [4] specifically the Osbern variant. [1]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list: Gerard filius Oseberne in Huntingdonshire; and Robert Oseberne in Oxfordshire. [5] Osbernus filius Willelmi was recorded in the Curia Regis Rolls for the year 1221 in Buckinghamshire and Henry Osbern, in the Assize Rolls of Cambridgeshire in 1260. John Osebarn was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex in 1296 and Walter Hosebarn was found in the Feet of Fines of Cambridgeshire in 1327. [1]

Early History of the Usborne family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Usborne research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1467, 1593, 1659, 1627, 1695, 1643, 1692, 1692, 1694, 1771, 1632, 1712, 1559, 1667, 1639, 1649, 1685, 1639, 1649 and 1671 are included under the topic Early Usborne History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Usborne Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Osborne, Osborn, Osbourne, Osbourn, Osburn, Osburne, Osbern and many more.

Early Notables of the Usborne family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Francis Osborne (1593-1659), an English essayist; Dorothy Osborne, Lady Temple (1627-1695), a British writer of letters and wife of Sir William Temple, 1st Baronet; Sarah Osborne (Osbourne, Osburne, or Osborn) (c. 1643-1692) (nee Warren), one of the first three...
Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Usborne Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Usborne family to Ireland

Some of the Usborne family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 127 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Usborne migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Usborne Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • William Usborne, who arrived in New York in 1837 [6]

Contemporary Notables of the name Usborne (post 1700) +

  • Mr. Alexander Henry Usborne M.B.E., British Co-founder of 104 Films Ltd., was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to the Economy and Overseas Investment [7]


The Usborne 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: Pax in bello
Motto Translation: Peace in war.


  1. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. ^ 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)
  7. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 4 July 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1


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