Recorded in several forms including Dearness, Deerness, Durness, and possibly Duness, this is possibly an Anglo-Scottish surname, but is more likely to be entirely Scottish. It would appear to originate from the parish of Deerness in the Orkney Islands, and specifically from the town of Sanday, where the name is well recorded from the mid part of the 18th century. It may be that earlier recordings do exist perhaps in relation to land charters, but if so we have not been able to identify any publically available examples. There is also a River Deerness in England in County Durham, and it is just possible that this river may have given rise to some nameholders. This is not apparent from the records of Durham where the name is not recorded until 1855, but the possibility, however remote, does remain. The name probably translates as 'river-loch' from the Olde English and now Welsh pre 5th century word 'dwfr' meaning river and the later Norse 'nes', which can mean a creek, a ridge or headland, or more commonally a loch or lake, perhaps one connected to the sea. Early examples of church register recordings taken from the surviving registers and all applying to Sanday township include William Dearness, a witness there on October 21st 1737, James Derness and his wife Elizabeth, witnesses at the christening of their son David on January 13th 1740, and William Deerness, also at Sanday, on April 15th 1794. Surnames in much of Europe were introduced about the year 1300, and on the mainland of England and Scotland were in normal use by the year 1400. Exceptions though were remote areas of Wales, small communities and the out islands, where hereditary surnames were often not in use as late as the 18th century.

Surnames reference. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dearness — Dear ness, n. 1. The quality or state of being dear; costliness; excess of price. [1913 Webster] The dearness of corn. Swift. [1913 Webster] 2. Fondness; preciousness; love; tenderness. [1913 Webster] The dearness of friendship. Bacon. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Dearness — (Roget s Thesaurus) < N PARAG:Dearness >N GRP: N 1 Sgm: N 1 dearness dearness &c. >Adj. Sgm: N 1 high price high price famine price fancy price Sgm: N 1 overcharge overcharge Sgm: N 1 extravagance extravagance Sgm: N …   English dictionary for students

  • dearness — (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) High cost Nouns 1. dearness, costliness, high, stiff, or famine price, pretty penny; overcharge, price gouging; extravagance, exorbitance; heavy pull upon the purse, an arm and a leg; sellers market;… …   English dictionary for students

  • dearness — dear ► ADJECTIVE 1) regarded with deep affection. 2) used in the polite introduction to a letter. 3) expensive. ► NOUN 1) an endearing person. 2) used as an affectionate form of address. ► ADVERB …   English terms dictionary

  • dearness — noun see dear II …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • dearness — See dearly. * * * …   Universalium

  • dearness — noun The quality of having great value or price …   Wiktionary

  • dearness — dear·ness || dɪrnɪs n. importance; preciousness …   English contemporary dictionary

  • dearness — dear·ness …   English syllables

  • dearness — noun the quality possessed by something with a great price or value • Syn: ↑costliness, ↑preciousness • Derivationally related forms: ↑precious (for: ↑preciousness), ↑dear, ↑costly …   Useful english dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.