Origin of the names

The Origin of the names of Ogbourne, Ogburn, Ogborne etc
The  above second names are different forms of the same name which originates in southern England.  In old records the same person can often be found as Ogborne or Ogburn or Ogbourne at different times.  Many of our early ancestors were not literate,  and the spelling in church records depended on the whim of the person recording the name at the time. In the last 200 years or so people have tended to retain their last name unchanged.

Prior to the 16th century the name was written as Okeborne or similar (i.e with a K )

We are told that last names or ‘surnames’  began to be used in England after the Norman invasion of 1066,  and were based in many cases on the place a person came from (e.g. William de Bristol, John de Amesbury),  his/her occupation (e.g. John le Hatter, John le Chandler),   or attributes such as ‘William le Bolde’.     The extract from a list of names of people in Salisbury, Wiltshire in 1352 shown at the bottom of the page shows examples of names used at that time.
Old court records show that in the 13th to 16th centuries the name of Okeborne etc crops up many times. Extracts from legal records from the 11th to 17th Centuries give ample examples of the names used.Ogbornes in UK Public Records from the years 1228 to 1483.

More cases in English Courts of Law 1259-1579

John Ogbourne, author of this website was born in Wootton Bassett, Wiltshire which lies just 8 miles from the Ogbourne villages,  and traces his ancestors in Wootton Bassett back to the earliest parish records in the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. Kingsbridge hundred,a small area in Wiltshire of which Wootton Bassett was the principal town, including the following examples:

  • 28 Nov 1277 William de Ockeburn was a juror in the case of John the Miller, accused of stealing corn
  • 27 March 1280 Nicholas de Okeburn was aquitted with others under suspicion of larceny after being held in Marleburg [Marlborough] gaol

It seems very likely therefore that Ogbourne ancestors lived in the same area of Wootton Bassett from as early as the 13th century.
We have ample evidence of people with surnames which initially used e.g  ‘de Okebourne’ but over time ‘de’ (of) was no longer used, these are a few examples.

Year Summary of the issue brought to the court of law
1269 Walter son of Roger de Okeburn’ gives half a mark for an assize to be taken. Order to the sheriff of Wiltshire.
1318 Presentation of Adam de Okebourne to the church of Felmersham, Co. Bedford. Calendar of Patent Rolls
1377 William Okebourne, Somerset, clerk . William sues William abbot of Athelney for 40s rent arrears
1430 Robert Okeburne, Wiltshire  Robert sues Richard Gore of New Sarum merchant for £27 4s debt

The origin of the name in England relates to villages that was once referred to as Okeburne, and now are known as Ogbourne i.e Ogbourne  Maizey, Ogbourne  St Andrew, and Ogbourne  St George in Wiltshire – were recorded in the Doomsday Book of 1086  though at that time the name was spelt as Ocheburne. (see extract below). This group of villages was one of the larger ones in Wiltshire in 1086.

The Bailiwick of Okeborne/Ogbourne

There was later a significant further development of Ogbourne St George which took place after the Norman conquest of England in 1066  – an expansion of monasticism took place in England and a priory of Benedictine monks, subordinate to the abbey of Bec-Herlowyn, in Normandy, was founded here about 1149; it became the richest and principal cell to that house in England. More information can be found on : https://www.ogbourne.com/origins-in-england/the-bailiwick-of-ogbourne/

Extract from a list of taxpayers in Salisbury, Wiltshire in 1352


Focusing on the history of the name of Ogbourne, Ogborn, Ogburn and other variants, including the early form of Ocheburne & Okebourne