This surname of TURNEY was a locational name 'of Tournay' in Artois France. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land, and indicated where he actually lived. The name was found in Ireland at an early date where it is rendered in Irish as O'TORNA. In Ireland the name is found mainly in Ulster, but it is also a synonym of Dorney, and the place Abbeydorney is named from this name which is also spelt TURN, TORNEY, TORNY and DORNEY. Many of the French place names signified the seat of a noble family. In the wake of the Norman Conquest (1066) there was a constant stream of people entering England from the English provinces of France. Early records of the name mention Geoffrey de TURNAI, who was recorded in the year 1273 in County Lincoln. Hereditary surnames were originally imported from France into England during the Norman Conquest of 1066. In the two centuries or so after the Conquest surnames were acquired by most families of major landholders, and many landed families of lesser importance. There appears to have been a constant trickle of migration into Britain between about the years 1200 and 150O, mostly from France and the Low Countries, with a small number of migrants from Scandinavia, Germany, Italy and the Iberian peninsular, and occasional individuals from further afield. During this period groups of aliens settled in this country as for example, the Germans who from the late 15th century onwards settled in Cumbria to work the metal mines. Immigration during this time had only a small effect on the body of surnames used in Britain. In many cases, the surnames of immigrants were thoroughly Anglicised. The late sixteenth century saw the arrival, mostly in London and the south-coast ports of large numbers of people fleeing from the war regions of France. A later instance of the name mentions Nathaniel Peacock who married Mary TURNEY at St. Michael, Cornhill, London in the year 1692. Arms registered in County Buckinghamshire.
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