Cowden Coat of Arms
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Which coat of arms or "family crest" is mine?
Choose the design you like best, just your ancestors did when they painted these symbols on the shields they carried into battle and displayed in their homes. These coats of arms are real, historical works of art/culture dating back as far as 1100AD. Most of these designs were compiled and documented by genealogists and heraldists in large books published in the nineteenth century. These arms were owned by individuals who bore your surname, and were passed down through the generations from father to son, earning the monicker "family crest".
Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Cowden Name
Origin of Cowden:
Cowden is an interesting surname which appears in Northern England and Northern Ireland. It is a provincial name which derives from the word “Cowden,” an area in Kent, Northumberland, and Yorkshire. The region in Kent, occurring as “Cudena” derives from the words “cu” which means “Cow”, and “Colden”, which means “place where charcoal burnt, from the component of “col”. Col is the ancient English word for char(coal). The word “Cu” and “Colden” both words come from Ancient English, prior to the 7th century. An area in Yorkshire is known as “Coledun.” The surname is listed in the Domesday Book in 1086, and appears from the component “col” and “dun” thus the whole meaning of these words are “the place where the charcoal burnt.” The Yorkshire Parish Schedule list consists of the wedding of Agnes Cowndon to Thomas Beane at Leake, in November 1583. The London Parish schedules have the name listed for a wedding of Anne Cownden to one John Parsons at St. Saviour, Southwark in September 1617. Fabian Cowndon married Thomas Brasier at St. Benet Paul Wharf, London in June 1625 and James, offspring of Richard and Elizabeth Cownden named at St. Ann Blackfriars, London in April 1663. The developmental names of the surname cowden consist of Cutting, Cudden, Cudding, Cuttin, Cutten, Cuttan, Cuddan, Cuddin, Cuddon, Cuding, Cuting, Cuden, Cutin, Cutine, Cudan, Cudane, Coudan, Coudiing, Coutting, Coutten, Couttan, Couttin, Cutton, etc
More common variations of this surname are: Cowdden, Wcowden, Cowdean, Coden, Cowdn, Cowdon, Couden, Cawden, Codden, Cowdan.
The surname Cowden first appeared in Norfolk. Cowden came from the area named Cowden, a small hamlet and local church in the Sevenoaks District of Kent.
The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that of Elizabeth Cowden, who married John Webster, which was dated September 1575, at Leake, Yorkshire. It was during the time of Queen Elizabeth I, who was known to be the “Good Queen Bess,” dated 1558 – 1603. The origin of surnames during this period became a necessity with the introduction of personal taxation. It came to be known as Poll Tax in England.
United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Cowden settled in the United States in two different centuries respectively in the 17th and 19th. Some of the people with the name Cowden who settled in the United States in the 17th century included Eman Cowden, who arrived in Virginia in 1650.
Some of the individuals with the name Cowden who settled in the United States in the 19th century included Robert Cowden, who landed in America in 1806. John Cowden, who landed in America in 1808. Anne Cowden, David Cowden, and William Cowden all arrived in New York, NY in the same year in 1817.
Some of the people with the name Cowden who settled in Canada in the 19th century included Agnes Cowden at the age of 19, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1833 aboard the ship “Pacific” from Liverpool in England.
Here is the population distribution of the last name Cowden: United States 4,934; England 156; France 3; Zimbabwe 11; Northern Ireland 191; Australia 245; Scotland 125; Canada 213; South Africa 219; New Zealand 52.
Charles Cowden Clarke (December 1787 – March 1877), was an English writer and Shakespearian professor. He was born in Enfield, Middlesex.
Mary Victoria Cowden Clarke (née Novello; June 1809 – January 1898) was an English writer. She was the first daughter of Vincent Novello.
William “Bill” Cowden (September 6, 1920 – October 17, 2007) was an American basketball player. He was a strong guard from Lowell High School in San Francisco, California. He played collegiately at Stanford University with his Lowell classmate, Don Burness.
John Peter Cowden (March 1917 – November 2006) was a reporter, whose career started in 1926 as a child entertainer on NBC. He was a performer on some radio programs, containing “Little Orphan Annie,” where he performed as Joe Corntassle with the San Francisco ensemble.
Lucinda Cowden was born in April 1965 in Ballarat, Victoria. She is an Australian artist who performed Melanie Pearson in the soap opera Neighbors from the year 1987 until 1991.
Cowden Coat of Arms Meaning
The three main devices (symbols) in the Cowden blazon are the annulet, lion and fesse. The three main tinctures (colors) are or, azure and sable .
Or is the heraldic metal Gold, often shown as a bold, bright yellow colour. It is said to show “Generosity and elevation of the mind” 1The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35. Later heralds, of a more poetic nature liked to refer to it as Topaz, after the gemstone, and, for obvious reasons associated it with the Sun 2Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In drawings without colour it is usually represented by many small dots, or by the letter ‘O’ 3A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P76-77.
The bright, strong blue color in Heraldry is known in English as azure, and similarly in other European languages – azul in Spanish, azurro in Italian and azur in French. The word has its roots in the Arabic word lazura, also the source of the name of the precious stone lapis lazuli 4A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure. Despite this, those heralds who liked to associate colours with jewels chose instead to describe blue as Sapphire. According to Wade, the use of this colour symbolises “Loyalty and Truth” 5The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36.
Sable, the deep black so often found in Heraldry is believed to named from an animal of the marten family know in the middle ages as a Sabellinœ and noted for its very black fur 6A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable. In engravings, when colors cannot be shown it is represented as closely spaced horizontal and vertical lines, and appropriately is thus the darkest form of hatching, as this method is known 7Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26. Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy 8The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35.
For easy recognition of the items on a coat of arms, and hence the quick identification of the owner, bold simple shapes are best. Hence, simple geometric shapes are often used for this purpose 9A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P146xz`, and the annulet is a good example, being a circular ring of any colour. They also appear interlaced or one within the other, both of which are very pleasing additions. Wade believes that these were one of the symbols of ancient pilgrims. 10The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P19
The art of heraldry would be significantly poorer if we were without the lion in all its forms. Most general works on Heraldry devote at least one chapter solely to this magnificent creature and its multifarious depictions 11A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P172 12Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 63 13Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P140. Some of the earliest known examples of heraldry, dating right back to the knighting of Geoffrey of Anjou in 1127, where he is shown with six such beasts upon his shield 14A Treatise on Heraldry, J. Woodward, W & A.K Johnston, Edinburgh & London, 1896, P45 .The great authority on heraldic symbology, Wade, points out the high place that the lion holds in heraldry, “as the emblem of deathless courage” 15The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P60, a sentiment echoed equally today.
The fesse (also found as fess) is one of the major ordinaries to found in heraldry, being a bold, broad, horizontal band across the centre of the shield. It may originally have arisen from the planks of which a wooden shield can be constructed, the centremost plank being painted a different colour 16A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Fesse. It is instantly recognisable as a symbol, for example the arms of COLEVILLE granted during the reign of Hery III are simply or, a fesse gules. With this clear association with the construction of the shield itself, Wade believes that the fesse can be taken to be associated with the military, as a “girdle of honour”.