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The Surnames of Wales [Hardcover]

John Rowlands , Sheila Rowlands
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Price: 19.46 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

20 Jan 2014
The dominance of a small number of common surnames in Wales can be a major stumbling block for those researching their Welsh ancestry or wishing to distinguish between individuals within a given community as part of a local history study. This book attempts to dispel many of the myths which surround the subject of surnames in Wales - such as the widely-held belief (outside Wales) that nearly everyone is named Jones - by describing the development of surnames within Wales down to modern times. Equal emphasis has been given to common names found throughout Wales and to rarer ones found only in specific localities. There are nearly 40 maps showing the incidence and distribution of the more interesting or typical surnames in the early part of the nineteenth century. These have been derived from a survey involving more than 270,000 surnames found in parish records throughout Wales and for this second edition it has been extended to cover given names. The most important additional work relates to the transition from patronymic naming to settled surnames. This illustrates very clearly how late the patronymic system survived in many parts of Wales. A method for predicting a possible place of origin within Wales for small groups of people (who may have migrated or emigrated), based on a knowledge of the distibution and incidence of both surnames and given names, is also described. The book draws heavily upon examples of surnames and given names recorded in ancient pedigrees and more recent family history research.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 323 pages
  • Publisher: Gomer Press (20 Jan 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848517750
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848517752
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16 x 3.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 192,402 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


REVIEWS OF THE FIRST EDITION 'Although this is a book primarily for genealogists ... it is likely to be a boon to many kinds of historian.' Professor Prys Morgan in Welsh History Review 'Rowlands and Rowlands have compiled a book which is not only scholarly but also readable... the small size of this book belies its importance... May there be many more such!' Dr Patrick Hanks in Family History News & Digest 'The Rowlands have filled their book with facts and figures in a manner which is never dull. If you are planning to write about surnames, this is the way to do it.' --Local History Magazine

About the Author

Sheila Rowlands FSG, MCG is a graduate in History of the University of Wales. She was the founder Director of residential courses in Welsh family history run for many summers at Aberystwyth University. A native of south Pembrokeshire, her personal research centres round the names, family and local history of that county. John Rowlands FSG has degrees in Civil Engineering and Transport Planning from the University of Wales and the University of Birmingham. Recently he has been awarded the degree of Master of Philosophy by Aberystwyth University for research into 'Investment in Shipping: North Cardiganshire in the Nineteenth Century'. Jointly they were involved with family history organisations at both the national and local levels for many years.

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5.0 out of 5 stars first class 26 Mar 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
first class service providing a fascinating read, a very comprehensive coverage of the subject far beyond the usual "Jones/Williams" names.
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