Sample of parish register with relationship tree  







What does the family name DEBRUYNE mean? (in het Nederlands)

Bruin , de; de Bruine; de Bruijn(e); de Bruyn(e); Brun, de; de Brun(n)e; (de) Broen: name according to the brown colour (of skin, or hair, or clothes), i.e. the equivalent of the English name BROWN or the French LE_BRUN or the German BRAUN. 1321 Oliviers de Brune, Kortrijk ; 1326 Jan de Brune, Ieper. The family name might be different from the name Bruin without the article de (which means the). However, both names Bruin and De Bruyne are used at random in the 13th to 15th century in the description of the (de) Brune, burgers van Ieper (The family de Brune, citizens of Ypres), a family of cloth producers) by Prof. Edgard De Bruyne. It is highly improbable that all Debruyne's originate from a single person.

In the 17th and 18th century Parish registers, the family name Debruyne is often misspelled, but always contains the syllables de and bru()n. In the Flandres area (the provinces of West-Vlaanderen and Oost-Vlaanderen in Belgium, Zeeuws-Vlaanderen in the Netherlands, and the so-called Frans-Vlaanderen in Northern France), the name will always end with "ne", i.e. Debruyne or De Bruyne. In the Brabant area it will most of the time end with "n", i.e. Debruyn or De Bruyn (the provinces Brabant and Antwerpen in Belgium; Noord-Brabant, Utrecht and Zuid- and Noord Holland in the Netherlands). We can see more or less a continuation of this split-up to the south in France , with Debruyne more abundant in the West and North of the country, and the Debruyn more available in North and Centre (see also Debruyne/Debruyn in Belgium/France)

Already before the French Revolution the two main variants can be distinguished: Debruyne and De Bruyne. It can be easily shown though, that both can originate from the same ancestors. Spelling variations become fixed with the introduction of the official registration system in the French period (ca. 1800). Only occasional errors can explain later variation.

Variations found: Debruyne, De Bruyne, Debruijne, De Bruijne, Debrune, De Brune, Debruine, De Bruine.

  1. F. Debrabandere, Woordenboek van de Familienamen in België en Noord-Frankrijk, Gemeentekrediet, Brussel, 1993.
  2. F. Debrabandere, Persoonsnamen in het Kortrijkse 1300-1350. Anthroponymica XIX, Leuven en Brussel, 1971
  3. W. Beele, Studie van de Ieperse persoonsnamen uit de stads- en baljuwsrekeningen 1250-1400, 1975
  4. E. De Bruyne, Les Brune, bourgeois d'Ypres - Une famille de drapiers Flamands (1250-1800) in Tablettes des Flandres, Tome 2, Bruges, 1949, 9-62. Dit werk bevat een stamreeks die loopt van ca. 1200 tot begin 19de eeuw.
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