Recorded in several spellings as shown below, this is a surname of Cornish and Olde English pre 7th century origins. It derives from the words 'pennknegh' meaning a hill top as in the now 'lost' medieval village in Cornwall recorded as Penkneck in the year 1269. Spellings of the surname include Penneck, Pennock, Pinnock, Pynnyck and others and all are almost certainly from this source. Locational surnames are usually from names. That is to say names given to people after they left their origin homes to move somewhere else. Spelling being at best rudimentary and local dialects very thick, often lead to the creation of 'sounds like' surnames. However locational surnames in Cornwall and parts of Northern Scotland obey a different rule. They are often ONLY found at or near the place from where they originate. As this could and did lead to everybody in the same area having the same surname, everbody would be given a local nickname to distinguish them from their family and neighbours. Early examples taken from the church registers of Cornwall include Grace Pinnick at Constantine on February 25th 1592, Rychard Pynnyck, also at Constantine on April 20th 1600, John Penneck at Germore, on August 23rd 1681, and Martin Pennock at St Gluvias on July 26th 1798. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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