The name Veryan...?

Ask your questions about Cornwall here. Whether it be Where, When, Who, What and Why someone\'s sure to know the answer.
Post Reply
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2009 7:20 pm

Post by strange » Thu Dec 31, 2009 7:28 pm

Greetings all! I am wanting to find out the answers to these questions...1, Is Veryan a Cornish name?2, Is it a highly popular Cornish name or a rare one?3, Is it likely that if a person was had a traditional Cornish surname

that they would in turn be given the first name Veryan?4, Is it traditionally been given to English babies with Cornish roots?Answers very much appreciated!Thank you.John.

User avatar
Posts: 11075
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 7:46 am

Post by Marhak » Thu Dec 31, 2009 8:39 pm

Veryan is a village and parish in the Roseland area of South Cornwall, and is named after the patron saint of the church.  Veryan has a feminine look about it and, since the 18th century, has been adopted as a Cornish girl's name.  This would also coincide with the period during which some antiquarians wrongly thought that the parish saint was female (all the early Latin references are masculine).
The records, though, (and going back to 1278) are pretty adamant that that saint was a man, and that his name was Symphorian: Veryan is just a contraction of this.  The spelling Symphorian/Simphorian is pretty consistent over a 700 year period, the 'ph' never going to 'f' as you might expect it to.  A spelling 'Severian (1525,1545) shows it shifting towards the modern contracted form.  (Something similar happened in the Land's End peninsula when St Selevan became St Levan).  It is unclear whether Sibillion in the 10th century list of Cornish saints is the same person.  Some modern commentators have held that the saint is the same as St Beryan(a) of the Land's End peninsula, but there is no evidence that seriously supports this.
The name is really that of the church dedication.  The village and 'manor' was historically Elerghy (Elerchi, Domesday Book; Elerghy 1349).  This is Cornish 'elergh' (swans) + a -y suffix that would render the meaning to be swans' place' or swans' stream'.
I hope this helps.

Posts: 97
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:34 pm

Post by JonFlower » Thu Dec 31, 2009 11:38 pm

Is a useful tool for seeing the geographical location of surnames in 1881 and 1998 in Great Britain.  However it works on Post Code geographies, so Cornish surnames in the east get distorted by the PL and EX issue.  "Veryan" doesn't have enough entries to list.
Using shows that Veryan 'events' were mostly in the South East... in fact I don't see any Veryan births, marriages or deaths registered in Cornwall between 1837 and ~1930s.
I hope those websites are of use.

One interesting thing I noticed on freebmd is that there are two events with "Trevosper" as the surname - the spelling before "Vosper" became the norm.

Posts: 78
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:40 am
Location: Redruth

Re: The name Veryan...?

Post by beniastrolab » Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:10 pm

I know of two Veryans, both the same age (32 or 33 years old), one male, one female...both Cornish

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests