Recorded as De Quesne, Des Quesnes, Desquesnes in Britain and North America, as well as in France more correctly as Duquesnay, Quesnay, Quesnoy, Quesne, and probably others, this is a surname of French origins. It is a residential name deriving from the original pre 7th century word 'chene' or in English 'chine', a word used occasionally to describe a cleft in a cliff, and hence a description of a person who lived by a chene, or came from Le Quesnoy in the province of Normandy. The name in England was probably originally Huguenot protestant refugee as we have the recording of Samuel de Quesne who married Mary Rough probably at the French church, Threadneedle Street, in the city of London on August 6th 1688. It may well be that any name holders in the U K originate from these people. In France we have a problem as not only were the protestants ruthlessly purged, but in the Revolution of 1792, all registers of any kind were destroyed when found and the church banned. Those that we have been able to find include Marie Duquesne who married Hubert Farvaques at Lille on January 24th 1658, and Olivier Quesne at Angers, Maine et Loire, on November 1st 1716.
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