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The Scottish Nation

KINGHORN, a surname said to be derived from an ancient royal burgh, lying on the shore of the firth of Forth, Fifeshire, which took its name from an adjoining promontory of land, styled in Gaelic Cean gorn or gorm, meaning “the blue head.” Very fanciful are these supposed Gaelic derivations in other parts of Scotland as well as the county of Fife. Both words of which the surname is composed are Anglo-Saxon nouns, and both, moreover, are significant of power. Immediately north of the town, said to have been first erected into a royal burgh by David I. (1124-1153), there stood a castle, a residence at one time of the Scottish kings, and it is thought by a writer in the Old Statistical account of Scotland, that the name may have been suggested by the frequent winding of the king’s horn when he sallied out to the chase in the vicinity. The castle and lands of Kinghorn were conferred by Robert II. in 1376 on Sir John Lyon of Glammis, knight, on his marriage with the king’s daughter, the princess Jane. His representative, Patrick, ninth Lord Glammis, was created earl of Kinghron by James VI., a title which was afterwards changed to that of Strathmore and Kinghorn, in the reign of James VII. It was in riding from Inverkeithing towards the castle of Kinghorn that Alexander III. was killed in 1286. (See ALEXANDER III.) Of the surname of Kinghorn was a Baptist preacher at Norwich, Rev. Joseph Kinghorn, who died in 1832.


KINGHORN, Earl of. See LYON, 9th Lord Glammis, and STRATHMORE, Earl of.

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