Thornton (surname)

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Thornton is a surname found in Ireland and Britain.



Found in Britain as an English and Scottish surname derived from places so named in Buckinghamshire, Cheshire, Fife, Merseyside, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, London, Pembrokeshire, Yorkshire. Its basic form denotes a settlement ('tun') of some sort beside a thorn tree or hedge of thorns .

In Ireland, it is an Anglicised form of a number of Gaelic-Irish surnames which have nothing to do with the British placenames. "[Thornton] is a portmanteau English name for Ó Droighneáin, Mac Sceacháin, Ó Toráin. The connection is: draighean, blackthorn; sceach, whitethorn; tor, a bush. MacLysaght remarks that some Thorntons in Limerick were 16 cent planters." . Ó Droighneáin remains in use as an Irish-language surname.

Bearers of the surname

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First name

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