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|Meaning||"son of Reynold"|
|Region of origin||England; Liatroim, Ireland|
Reynolds is a surname in the English language. Among the earliest recorded use of the surname is from the early 14th century.
Reynolds is a patronymic surname meaning "son of Reynold", where the given name of the father, "Reynold", or "Reginald", was a Germanic name composed of *raginą + *waldą, meaning "Powerful Ruler" (possibly an alteration of the Old French name Reinold). The addition of "s" to the father's first name makes Reynolds a simple genitive case patronymic.
Possessors of these names arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066, and early English chronicles indicate a Norman origin, with the name appearing in England from about 1066. Early records of the name mention Willemus filius Raunaldi who was listed in the Domesday Book of 1086, in which "Rainald-us" is a common Christian name. The alternative Saxon origin is less commonly cited (in this etymology, the name is constructed from the Saxon words Rhein, pure, and hold, love).
The name Reynolds appeared in many references, but spellings included Reynell, Reynalds, Renals, Rennels and many more. Scribes recorded and spelled the name as it sounded. Hence, a person would appear to be born with one spelling, married with another, and buried with still another.
Reynolds emerged as a notable family name in the county of Somerset where Sir Richard Reynell (died pre-1213) was seated at Pitney in Somerset and was given custody of the Castles at Exeter and Launceston by King Richard I when he went to the Holy Land in 1191. In 1198 Godfrey, Robert and Torketil Renoldus were registered in Normandy.
Meanwhile, many of the junior branches had joined the Earl of Pembroke's Irish invasion, where they became the Earls of Cavan, of Lisburne, of Mountmorris. In England the main line was forfeited but Sir Richard's son recovered the lands. This distinguished west country family also branched to other locations in England, mostly under the name Reynolds; for example, Walter Reynolds (died 1327) was the son of a Windsor baker, who became the favourite of King Edward II and Archbishop of Canterbury (1313–1327).
In Ireland, settlers became known as the "Adventurers for land." They "undertook" to keep the Protestant faith, and were granted lands previously held by the Irish. This family migrated to Ireland during two periods, first with the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland, and later, in the 17th century giving rise to the Reynells of Reynell castle. In some cases it is difficult to distinguish early migrants from native Irish Reynolds who derive their name from McRannell, formerly spelled "Mac Ragnaill".
Among colonisers of North America bearing the family name Reynolds were Henry, Samuel, Thomas Reynold who joined the colonisation of the Barbados in 1688; Christopher Reynolds settled in Virginia in 1622; Nathaniel Reynold settled in Salem in 1630; Robert Reynolds settled in Salem in 1630 with Mary and his four children; Cornelius, Edward, George, Hannah, James, Mary, Nicholas, Richard Reynolds also settled in Virginia. During the American War of Independence some declared their loyalty to the Crown and moved into Canada as United Empire Loyalists.
More recently, notable bearers of the Reynolds surname include: Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723–1792), painter; John Reynolds (US politician) (1788–1865), American politician, Governor of Illinois; James Clark McReynolds (1862–1946), US Attorney General (1913–14) and Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court (1914–41); Albert Reynolds (born 1935), Irish politician, Prime Minister of the Republic of Ireland (1992–95); Debbie Reynolds (1932–2016), American actress, dancer and singer; Christopher Reynolds, Australian Archbishop of Adelaide (1873–1893); as well as Burt Reynolds (1936–2018), American actor. Rebecca Reynolds moved to New York then to Atlanta from Sydney Australia. The most ancient grant[who?] of a Coat of Arms found was a silver shield with a portcullis and three blue bars; A fox was the canting crest (French: renard = fox).
The ancient family Motto for this distinguished name was: Jus meum tuebor ("I will defend my right")
Or, "Favente Deo ("With God favouring").
Throughout Ireland's rich history, the Reynolds family name was a prominent one, and even today County Leitrim is the principal stronghold of the name, nearly half the people in Ireland so called hailing from that area.
In the Irish language, the surname is rendered Mac Raghnaill, and the name is ultimately derived from the Old Norse Rognvald a Latin borrowing of the two words regal and valor. It was also a surname of Irish Huguenots who came to Ireland from France to evade religious persecution in the 1600s; The original French surnames being either Renaud or Renault; Or a combination of both, respectively.
Like many Irish families, the Reynolds began emigrating from Ireland in two fronts: early in America's history, as they settled in the northeast prior to the American Revolution; and later, in the 19th century, during the Great Irish Hunger, when millions of Irish Catholics came to North America. The first wave of Irish immigrants were mostly Anglo-Irish Protestant converts from The North of Ireland, which differentiates them distinctly from the second wave of refugees from the Great Famine of Ireland, who were evidently Roman Catholic and from Mainland Ireland.
There is also a branch of the family which traces its origin to Phillipe D'Reynald, a templar knight who was required to return from the Holy Land and take up the legacy of his deceased brother William. However, this branch is more difficult to locate but is believed to have moved through Normandy and Somerset and on to Ireland.
Some of the better-known Irish Reynolds include:
- Alan Reynolds (footballer) (born 1974), retired Irish footballer and assistant with Derry City F.C
- Albert Reynolds (1932–2014), eighth Taoiseach of the Ireland and fifth leader of Fianna Fáil
- Charles Reynolds (cleric), (born 1496/1497), Irish cleric, Archdeacon, Chaplin, and "traitor" who opposed Henry VIII of England.
- Gerry Reynolds (Irish politician) (born 1961)
- James Henry Reynolds (1844–1932), famous soldier and recipient of the Victoria Cross
- Mark Reynolds (basketball) (born 1984), Irish basketball player
- Osborne Reynolds (1842–1912), Irish physicist and engineer
- Patrick Reynolds (Cumann na nGaedhael) (1887–1932), father of Patrick J. Reynolds and an Irish Cumann na nGaedhael politician
- Patrick J. Reynolds (1920–2003), Irish politician who served three terms in Dáil Éireann and five in Seanad Éireann, where he was Cathaoirleach (speaker) for four years.
- Nicola Reynolds (born 1972), Welsh actress
Originally from Maidstone, Kent, England, the first Reynolds that related to Portugal, Thomas Johnson William Reynolds, born in 1786, was a naval officer but withdrawn, settled later in Chatham, also in Kent, as an importer of fruit, wine corks and virgin cork from Spain and Portugal, until, because of a liver disease, on the advice of a doctor, that Reynolds began a sea voyage that brought him to Porto, where he saw a good opportunity to expand his business. With him came his sons, Thomas, William and Robert Hunter Reynolds, born respectively in 1811 and 1820. His daughter had already been born in Port Elizabeth in 1828.
Portugal proved to be a wealth of opportunities for these Reynolds. His son Robert, was the person that brought him to the Alentejo region, where he began his purchase of cork bark still on the tree, paying in advance, sometimes several years, with risk but with superb profits. Thus came the Alentejo and setting properties in Estremoz, accompanied by a nephew, son of Thomas, born in 1842, named William Reynolds.
People whose family name is or was Reynolds or one of its variants include:
- Adam Reynolds, Australian rugby league footballer
- Alastair Reynolds (born 1966), Welsh science fiction author
- Alexander Reynolds (1816–1876), American Army officer & Confederate general
- Allie Reynolds (1917–1994), Major League Baseball pitcher
- Alvina Reynolds, Saint Lucian politician
- Andrew Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Anne Reynolds (d. 1634), English courtier
- Barbara Reynolds
- Bill Rennells (born 1931), British broadcaster and journalist
- Bob Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Brayley Reynolds (born 1935), Welsh footballer
- Brian Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Bryan Reynolds (born 1965), American performance theorist
- Bryan Reynolds (born 1995), American professional baseball outfielder
- Bryan Reynolds (born 2001), American professional soccer player
- Burt Reynolds (1936–2018), American actor
- Butch Reynolds (born 1964), American track star
- Carl Reynolds (1903–1978), Major League Baseball outfielder
- Charles Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Christopher Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Craig Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Dallas Reynolds (born 1984), American football player
- Dan Reynolds (singer) (born 1987), American musician, frontman of the pop rock band Imagine Dragons
- Daphne Reynolds (1918–2002), English painter and printmaker
- Darius Reynolds (born 1989), American football player
- David Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Dean Reynolds (born 1963), English professional snooker player
- Debbie Reynolds (1932–2016), American actress
- Debby Reynolds (born 1952), former UK Chief Veterinary Officer
- Deborah Reynolds (born 1953), U.S. politician
- Deborah Reynolds Sydney, Australia, Jeweller
- Dick Reynolds, American politician
- DJ eL Reynolds (born Lee Martin Reynolds), English DJ/radio personality, also of Filipino descent
- Don Reynolds (actor) (1937–2019), American actor
- Donn Reynolds (1921–1997), Canadian country singer and world record yodeller
- Douglas Reynolds (1882–1916), English recipient of the Victoria Cross
- Ed Reynolds (safety) (born 1991), American football player
- Elise Reynolds (born 1969), Dutch cricketer
- Frank Reynolds (1923–1983), journalist for the American Broadcasting Company (ABC)
- Gene Reynolds (1923–2020), American actor, television writer, director, and producer
- Gene Reynolds (born 1950), Louisiana politician
- George Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Gerald Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Gerry Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Gladys H. Reynolds, American statistician
- Harold Reynolds (born 1960), Major League Baseball second baseman
- Henry Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Hiram Reynolds (1854–1938), General Superintendent, Church of the Nazarene
- Hubert Reynolds (1860–1938), American politician
- J. Sargeant Reynolds, US politician
- James Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Jack Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Jasper Reynolds, English footballer
- Jeremiah N. Reynolds (1799–1858), newspaper editor, lecturer, explorer and author
- Jerry Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Joffrey Reynolds (born 1979), gridiron football player
- John Reynolds (disambiguation)
- John F. Reynolds, Union general in the American Civil War
- Joseph Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Josh Reynolds (born 1989), Australian rugby league footballer
- Josh Reynolds (American football) (born 1995), American football player
- Joshua Reynolds (1723–1792), English painter
- Joyce K. Reynolds, American computer scientist
- Joyce Reynolds (actress) (born 1924), American former film actress
- Kevin Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Kevin Reynolds (born 1952), American film director and screenwriter
- Kevin Reynolds (born 1990), Canadian figure skater
- Lacey Reynolds, American college basketball coach
- Luke Reynolds, English singer/songwriter
- Mack Reynolds (1917–1983), US pulp science fiction magazine author
- Malvina Reynolds (1900–1978), American folk/blues singer-songwriter and political activist
- Maria Hester Park (née Reynolds) (1760–1813), English keyboard player, composer and teacher
- Mark Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Mel Reynolds (born 1952), US politician
- Nick Reynolds (1933–2008), American folk musician, founding member of The Kingston Trio
- Norman Reynolds, British Academy Award-winning art director
- Osborne Reynolds (1842–1912), Irish physicist and engineer
- Pam Reynolds, American musician who had a famous near-death experience
- Patrick Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Paul Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Peter Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Prue-Anne Reynalds, Australian cyclist
- R. J. Reynolds (1850–1918), founder of R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company
- Ray Reynolds (born 1936), Australian cricketer
- Richard Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Robert Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Roger Reynolds (born 1934), US composer
- Roslyn Reynolds, English rugby league footballer of the 1940s and 1950s
- Rose Reynolds, British actress
- Roughton "Rou" Reynolds, lead singer/electronics in Enter Shikari; an English post-hardcore band
- Ryan Reynolds (born 1976), Canadian actor
- Samuel Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Scottie Reynolds (born 1987), American basketball player
- Shane Reynolds (born 1968), Major League Baseball pitcher
- Sherman Reynolds (1878–1958), rancher and mayor of Chico, California from 1919 to 1923
- Sidney Hugh Reynolds (1867–1949), English geologist
- Simon Reynolds, British music critic
- Stan Reynolds, Canadian businessman
- Stan Reynolds, English jazz trumpeter
- Thomas Reynolds (disambiguation)
- Tim Reynolds, guitarist
- Tommie Reynolds (born 1941), Major League Baseball outfielder
- Vernon Reynolds (born 1935), British anthropologist
- Walter Reynolds (died 1327), Archbishop of Canterbury
- Walter H. Reynolds (1901–1987), Mayor of Providence, Rhode Island
- Wellington J. Reynolds (1865–1949), portrait painter and art instructor at the Art Institute of Chicago
- William Reynolds (disambiguation)
- The Reynolds Girls (Linda Reynolds, born 1970 and Aisling Reynolds, born 1972), English dance-pop duo
- Caroline Reynolds, a character from the television series Prison Break
- Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Reynolds, a character from the British sitcom It Ain't Half Hot Mum
- Kate Reynolds, a fictional character from the movie The Family Man
- Kate Reynolds, She has her own weekly news show. It's called "The World in Vision." – a fictional character from the movie Omen III: The Final Conflict
- Peter Reynolds, a fictional character from the movie Omen III: The Final Conflict
- Dennis, Deandra and Frank Reynolds, fictional characters who own an Irish pub in the TV series It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
- Matt Reynolds, a character from the movie L.A. Confidential.
- Mrs. Reynolds, the Darcy's housekeeper in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice
- Malcolm Reynolds, the captain of the ship Serenity in the TV series Firefly and the movie Serenity
- Eileen Reynolds, Kate Rowan's aunt in the British TV series Heartbeat.
- Reynolds cycling team, Spanish professional cycling team
- "Reynolds Surname Meaning and Geographic Distribution". forebears.co.uk. Retrieved 19 January 2014
- Vivian, Lt. Col. J. L., (ed.) The Visitations of the County of Devon: Comprising the Heralds' Visitations of 1531, 1564 & 1620, Exeter, 1895, pp. 643–645, pedigree of Reynell, p. 643
- Bardsley, C. W. (1996) . A dictionary of English and Welsh surnames. Genealogical Pub. Co. p. 643. ISBN 978-0-8063-0022-1. OCLC 36426097.
- "REYNOLDS – Name Meaning & Origin". astro-centr.net. Retrieved 27 March 2012.
- Lower, M. A. (January 1849). English surnames. An essay on family nomenclature, historical, etymological, and humorous. University of Michigan Library. p. 160.
- Shelley, C. "Select Reynolds Surname Genealogy".
- Harrison, H. (2005) . Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary. p. 160. ISBN 978-0-8063-0171-6. OCLC 228288696.
- Arthur, W. (1857). An etymological dictionary of family and Christian names. Sheldon, Blakeman & Company. p. 224. OCLC 1388229.
- "Certificate # 25372201034206 218537". The Ancient History of the Distinguished Surname Reynolds. Swyrich Corp. 1998–2010.
- Literal translation"Selected mottoes for names beginning with "Q" or "R"". Fleur-de-Lis designs.
- Los Reynolds Pérez-Montalvo