Way Back Wednesday: K is for Kirk

September 7, 2016


No, not Captain James T of the Starship Enterprise.  I'm talking genealogy here (although did you know that Star Trek actor William Shatner's family tree is on the internet?)

'Kirk' was the name for the Church of Scotland.  But you knew I was going to say that, didn't you?  But do you know what 'kirking' is? (and, yes, it has to do with surnames)

When a couple got married - so she changed her surname to that of her husband and created headaches for future genealogists everywhere - you would expect that they would do everything together.  The first time that a new husband-and-wife went to worship at church was called their 'kirking'.

The word 'kirk' is found in many forms.  As part of surnames, given names, place names, Kirk Sessions (Presbyterian court), Kirking of the Tartan as part of festivals in Nova Scotia - even when a foreign language word is turned into English (think of Dunkirk).


© Ros Haywood
School of  Surnames

Next week's letter is 'L'. Has anybody got any interesting snippets that marry up L with surname studies?  If so, please send them to Ros Haywood at sos [at] surname-society.org

letter K courtesy of openclipart.org


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