Last name: Gardner

This interesting surname recorded as Garden and Gardyne, both metonymics for a gardner, and Gardener, Gardenner, Gardiner, Gardinor, Gairdnar, Gairner and Gardner, is of French origins. Recorded widely in England, Ireland, and Scotland, it is both a status and an occupational name, and relates to the head gardner of a noble or even royal house. Derived from the Northern French word "gardin" and introduced into the British Isles after the Norman Invasion of 1066, it is itself a diminutive of the pre 7th century Germanic word "gard", meaning an enclosure. The function of the "gardiniere" in medieval times was a very important one. He was responsible for the kitchen garden, which provided almost the only source of fresh food and herbs, and hence played a critical part in maintaining the health of the household. The use of the word "gardener" refers to one who tends ornamental lawns and flower beds, and is a later application. Interesting examples of early surname recordings include: William le Gardinier of the county of Rutland in 1199, William Gardin of Huntingdon in 1218, and John atte Gardyne of Sussex in the Subsidy Tax Rolls of that county in 1296. Later recordings include: Richard Gardiner, who was a seaman aboard the famous ship "Mayflower" which carried the Pilgrim Fathers to the New World in 1620, but it is understood that returned to England with the ship, and Peter Gardner actually emigrated to the Virginia Colony on the ship "Elizabeth of London" in 1635. The first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of William del Gardin, in the charters of Oxford in 1183.

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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 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.

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