Sidney (surname)

Sidney or Sydney is an English surname. It is probably derived from an Anglo-Saxon locational name, sīdan īege = " wide island/watermeadow (in the dative case). There is also a folk etymological derivation from the French place name Saint-Denis.

The name has also been used as a given name since the 19th century.

The Sidney family rose to prominence in the Tudor period with the courtier Sir William Sidney (d. 1554). His son Henry Sidney (1529–1586) became a prominent politician and courtier. By Mary Dudley, Lady Sidney (d. 1586) he was the father of Philip Sidney (1554–1586), poet and courtier under Elizabeth I, Mary Sidney (1561–1621), married Mary Herbert, Countess of Pembroke and Robert Sidney, 1st Earl of Leicester (d.1626). The latter was created Baron Sydney of Penhurst in 1603. Following Robert, the Earls of Leicester bore the surname Sidney:

The first creation of the title Baron Sydney was extinct with the death of the 7th Earl of Leicester in 1743.

In 1768, Dudley Cosby, Minister Plenipotentiary to Denmark between 1763 and 1765, was made Baron Sydney (second creation), of Stradbally in the Queen's County, in the Peerage of Ireland. This creation became extinct on Lord Sydney's death in 1774.

Thomas Townshend was created Baron Sydney (third creation) of Chiselhurst in 1783. He was later created Viscount Sydney. Sydney Cove and by extension Sydney, Australia are named for him.

This page was last edited on 28 November 2017, at 23:20.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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