This unusual and interesting surname is of Irish origin, and is a dialectal variant of the name Kidney, an Anglicized form of the Gaelic O Dubhain, the prefix "O" meaning descendant of, plus "Dubhan", normally a byname from a diminutive of "dubh" meaning black, but in this instance as a result of association with the homonymous "dubhan", it means kidney. Church Records list the christenings of Anne Kydney on January 1st 1592 at Harrow on the Hill, London, and Anne, daughter of John and Anne Kitney, on August 1st 1722 at St.Mary Whitechapel, Stepney. The marriage of Edward Kitney to Elizabeth Gammon took place on September 21st 1743 in Boxley, Kent. A Coat of Arms granted to the family is blue, on a gold chevron between two silver lambs in chief and a silver ram in base three red lamb's kidneys. The Crest is on a green mount an eagle reguardant rising proper, in the beak a kidney, as in the arms. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Kidney, which was dated June 1st 1589, marriage to Anne Bulton, at Harrow on the Hill, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1st, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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.
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