Last name: Gardner
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The Gardner surname means guardian in Old French. "The Old French Dictionary" by Robert Kelham stated that the word 'garden' means lord warden. All of these websites and non educated surname specialists think the name Gardner means gardener. If it were so, then it would be as common as Smith. The surname Gardner means guardian.
The surname Gardner is of a Scandinavian-Germanic origin. It was derived from the Northern French word "gardin" and introduced into the British Isles after the Norman (Norse) Invasion of 1066. The Normans adopted the Frank German language and customs and during the invasion into England they brought with them Franks, Flemish and also Jews. Language and people are migratory and have a history. You may have noticed that language is still changing and being added to by witness of our own current language changes today. Don’t forget the fact that words can have more than one meaning and with all things there is a history; so layer upon layer there are migratory changes made. The word “gardin” is derivative of the pre 7th century Germanic word "gard". The word “gar” itself means “spear” and the word “den” means “faithful or loyal”; so the “garden” becomes the place that is faithfully or loyally kept in order and under the care of the spear by its faithful or loyal defender. Now getting back to the word “gard” which truly means “guard or protector” and when connected with the word “ner” it means “one at or one near” and so it now becomes the word we know as the “Gardner”; the guard nearby or at the “garden” which is that separated bit of land in the enclosure of which was, is and forever will be, so loyally or faithfully kept or tended as it is under the constant care of the ever present Gardner (gardener). As anyone one can attest, the Gardner (gardener) is the one who truly does battle against the elements and the cruel intruders which can so easily enter into the garden from the outside. So how does the (Gardner) gardener accomplish this you ask? By faithfully or loyally guarding it and keeping it under the care of gardening implement. Oh yes, there is a history shared between tools and weaponry. Do you realize that even kitchen tools were derived from those used outdoors in the garden shed and also from those which were found in the workshop? Just ponder the following from The King James Bible: Isaiah 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. Is there nothing new under the sun?
The first man to have the name was supposed to be Sir Osborn Gardner, a knight, who fought in the Crusades. Most people back then were farmers, so that really has no meaning. I believe Sir Osborn Gardner was a bodyguard to the King, being the guardian, or he was nicknamed "The Gardener", as was the case of Sir William Carpenter, nicknamed "The Carpenter". Everyone seems to think the name Gardner means gardener and state it as fact, when it is nothing but theory.
The name of Gard(i)ner is believed to have been derived from the Saxon words gar, meaning "a weapon", and dyn' meaning "sound or alarm", combined with the termination "er". Other authorities claim that the name was derived from the occupation of its original bearer as a gardener, but this theory is not generally accepted. http://ted.gardner.org/gardname.htm I can trace my lineage to Thomas Gardner of Cape Ann, and later Salem Mass.
It's always very easy to take the word as it is written on the internet, but one way of challenging and forming a conclusion of your own - in regards to surnames in England - is to break it down. Thus, 'Gardner' can become: Gar: Spear Den: Faithful or loyal. A loyal spear.
I have always believed my family name comes from being a gardener or land worker. My ancestors up to 1650 come from Balscote (Balscott) in Oxfordshire and the men were all farmers or farm workers. I have inherited this love of the land, so there must be something in it.
Kathy Gardner Hall
Hi Jenny, my name is Kathy Gardner Hall and I have traced my ancestry to Jasper Gardner as the first of my ancesters to come over on a ship named Peter and Anthony. I'm interested in how far you have traced your ancestry and if it goes back to Jasper.