Courtney Family History
The Courtney ancient family history was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. The original form of the name Courtney is 'de Courtenai', indicating a place in the south of France. Variants of this name include Courteney and Cortnay. This family can be traced back to Sens in France, which was fortified by Athon, Sire de Courteney, around the year 1010. Renaud de Courteney fled from France to England, 1150, and acquired lands in Devon. They held the title of Earls of Devon in direct descent from Hugh de Courteney, his title being recognised in 1335. This name is of Anglo-Norman descent spreading to the Celtic countries of Ireland, Scotland and Wales in early times and is found in many mediaeval manuscripts throughout these countries. Examples of such are a Hugo de Courteney, Devon, who was recorded in the 'Hundred Rolls', England, in the year 1273. In Ireland the name is principally found in County Kerry where it is an anglicized form of the Gaelic O'Curnain sept name, more often changed to Cournane and Curnane. Other Courteneys are found in Ulster having been introduced there centuries ago.The Courtney family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Courtney descendants.