Last name: Burns

This interesting surname is of early medieval English origin, and is a locational name from Burnhouse in Scotland. The placename derives from the Middle English "burn", stream, and "house", house. During the Middle Ages, when migration for the purpose of job-seeking was becoming more common, people often used their former village or hamlet name as a means of identification, resulting in a wide distribution of the name in the surrounding areas. The surname is first recorded in Yorkshire in the early 13th Century (see below), over three hundred years before it is found in Scotland. David Burnis is listed as being a follower of the earl of Cassilis in 1526. In the modern idiom the surname can be found as Burness, Burnes and Burns. On June 5th 1608, Bessie Burnes married Charles Bryson in Edinburgh, Midlothian, and on September 28th 1760, Gilbert, son of William and Agnes Burness was christened at Alloway, Ayr. A Coat of Arms granted to the family is a gold shield, and on a blue fess, between two black spur rowels in chief and a black hunting horn stringed in base, a gold water bouget, the Crest being a demi-Pegasus, winged gold. The Motto, "Perseverantia vincit", translates as, "Perseverance Conquers". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Brenhus, which was dated 1208, in the "Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

© Copyright: Name Origin Research 1980 - 2017

Surname Scroll

Enjoy this name printed onto our colourful scroll, printed in Olde English script. An ideal gift. View Details.

Maureen Burns-Murtha
As my father always told us; "We are Irish! If anyone ever tries to tell you that we came from Soctland or England, politely explain that our ancestors were very strong swimmers and made it to the Emerald Isle". Erin go Bragh! :)

Katherine Burns
i did not know the last name Burns is name is relly Katherine danieell burns

Frank Burns
I was told by my father that we were Scottish and Irish and by all I've read this makes a lot of sense. My Father was James and his father from what he told me was Henry or Henny or Hendrick. My father was born in NYC in 1918. Anyway I would like to say Hi ! to all you Burns's. So Hi from Frank.

Christy Burns-Powell
My dad has been chasing our geliology for some time now. He has fallowed our roots to 3 generations that lived in Germany, and then he got stuck. :(

I have often wondered about this with my Grandpa having the surname Burns. He was born in Shropshire, records so far show he of irish descent - strangely enough he married an english girl of irish descent, up to now I have traced both their origins to Ireland,maternal side south west. All interesting research, love it would do it all day if it was possible!

Graham Burns
Whilst correct for the English/Scots origin of the name, there is a completely seperate origin which would account for most of those of Irish origin that maintain a Catholic tradition in their family (due to the fact that families generally maintain these traditions, and most English/Scots rooted families would have been of the Protestant faith, with very little reason to convert to Catholicism, given the times). Many Irish Burns (like myself) would more likely originate from an alternative anglicisation of Ó Broin (a root shared with the Byrne, O'Byrne, Byrnes), which was the Wicklow/Kildare based clan of Bran, whose probable origin is Bran mac Máelmórda, King of Leinster, deposed in 1018. Bran means Raven, if you fancy a family totem.

Lynn Burns
Just read that the name BURNS is Scottish as far back as 1327, under King Edward I of England. The Burns Clan were called the "unruly ones," and held territory on the north borders of England . Clan Burns has it own tartan and shield, very pretty too. We had researched genealogy for years and thought Burns were sects of Clan Campbell, glad to find we have our own clan.

Robert Burns
I've traced my Italian side back to the 1600, BUT the Irish?????? All I've gotten back to is my Burns family coming to the US in 1860 and living in Baltimore Maryland.
What steps should I take to get back to Ireland? I've been working on this for years.

Benjamin Burns

Any other Burns' families in Western Australia or Australia please leave a comment'... :)

Dana Burns

Burns are Ulster Scots.....Scots that came to Northern Ireland via Scotland. I did my DNA and was 67% Scottish and only 8% Irish....which I was surprised about. Some of the Irish Byrnes that came over to the USA changed their surname to Burns as the Irish were seen as lower level people etc.


robbert burns are you the father of us (the tremblays)?

Stephanie Burns
My Burns family lives in Oklahoma and Texas. My great grandfather was Grady Burns, a coal miner, in McAlester, OK. I'm not sure where we come from "originally". We have family in Arkansas and Louisiana as well.

Robert Fyfe Mein Duncan
my Maternal Grandfather Gen John Robert Burns born in in Washinton DC inspired me to complete an item on my bucket list and trace our families connection to Gallowglass mercenaries in the plantation areas of Northern Ireland. We know of roots in Scotland of Clan Donnachaidh and Clan Burns and relationships with the Campbell's. clan Duncan/Robertsons had numerous warriors in the famous battles with England. I know the Norman and Irish came to fight as well. The was a saying in Scotia Major/Ireland of the Norman/Vikings Hibernica a Hybernicus spelling forgiven they are more Irish than we.

john henry burns
john henry burns was from west guinea he was a slave fought in the civil war lived in Burleson tx he said they called him the guinea man looking for history on him?

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