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Swain




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Surname:  Swain
Branch:  Swain
Origins:  British
More Info:  England

Background:  Swain is an English surname, from the Scandinavian personal name Sven, Suen, or Svein, a nickname literally meaning boy. It came to England with the eighth-century Viking raids and again in 1066 with the Normans, who were ultimately of Norse descent. Swain family history enters the books with Osgot Sveyn, who was added to the Anglo-Saxon Wills List of Cambridgeshire in 1045. Swain genealogy includes several well-known people, such as 19th-century North Carolina Governor David Swain; the first woman to vote in the US, Louisa Swain; Australian actor Brett Swain; and award-winning British journalist Jon Swain.




Motto:  L’amour et loyauté, Love and loyalty.
Arms:  az. a chev. betw. three pheons or, on a chief ar. three roses gu. seeded of the second, barbed vert.
Crest:  a demi dragon, supporting an arrow ar. armed or.


View the Heraldry Dictionary for help.




Swain is an English surname derived from the Old Norse personal name Sveinn (Sven, Sweyn), meaning a youth or young man. There are a number of variations in the spelling of the surname Swain, including Swaine, Swainne, and Swayne.

It is also common as a given name in history as Sweyn.

From this word meaning boy, young male or servant, are derived:

(1) The noun swain, meaning a rustic lover or boyfriend, cf. the numerous examples in Shakespeare's work, including his lyric, "[w]ho is Sylvia, what is she that all our Swains commend her" (from The Two Gentlemen of Verona).

(2) There are also specific nautical words involving swain: boatswain (literally "young man in charge of a boat") which can be seen in Shakespeare's The Tempest, and coxswain.

Name Variations:  Swain, Swaine, Swainne, Swayne, Sweyn, Swan, Swann, Swanner, Swani, Swein, Sweing.

References:
One or more of the following publications has been referenced for this article.
The General Armory; Sir Bernard Burke - 1842.
A Handbook of Mottoes; C.N. Elvin - 1860.
English Surnames; C.M. Matthews - 1966.
A Dictionary of English Surnames; P.H. Reaney - 1958.
Archives.com: http://www.archives.com/genealogy/family-history-swain.html
Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swain_(surname)


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