The small parishes of Ruan Minor and Ruan Major should not be confused with Ruanlanihorne. (Ruan was a saint – in Old Cornish Rumon.) Ruan Major and Minor will be treated together here as they are neighbouring parishes on the Lizard peninsula, now combined with a third parish to make up the modern Grade-Ruan. Around … Continue reading Running from Ruan?
After a run of coastal parishes, we’re back in mining country. Germoe is a small parish in terms of area, almost entirely surrounded by its big brother Breage and consequently often ignored. However, the struggle of Germoe folk after the 1860s is indicative of the adaptations that Cornish people had to undertake when mining began … Continue reading Germoe: coping with crisis
Does the presence of patronymic surnames (surnames derived from first names) tell us anything about the last days of the traditional Cornish language? I have argued elsewhere that the distribution of the most common surnames in nineteenth century Cornwall – Williams, Thomas and Richards – offers a good indication of the geography of the language … Continue reading Patronyms and the Cornish language
You can find maps of these in 1861 for comparison here. John was the commonest first name for men in 16th century Cornwall. Remember, if you want information on a surname that hasn’t appeared in my book or been a subject of a previous blog do let me know.