First Name
in the U.S.
since 1880
Last Name
in the U.S.
in 2010
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How to Pronounce Kenning

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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Kenning mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Kenning

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Webster's Unabridged Dictionary
noun Ken"ning
  1. Range of sight.(Obs)
  2. The limit of vision at sea, being a distance of about twenty miles.

Etymology: See Ken (v. t.)

Other Dictionary Sources
  1. Conventional metaphoric name for something, used especially in Old English and Old Norse poetry

From Middle English, derivative of Middle English kennen (“to know, perceive”). Compare Danish kending (“acquaintance”). More at ken.

  1. (obsolete) Sight; view; a distant view at sea.
  2. (obsolete) Range or extent of vision, especially at sea; (by extension) a marine measure of approximately twenty miles.
  3. As little as one can recognise or discriminate; a small portion; a little.
    put in a of salt

From ken (“to beget, bring forth”).

  1. The tread of an egg; cicatricula.

From Old Norse, from kenna (“know, perceive”), from Proto-Germanic *kannijaną, causative of *kunnaną (“to know how”). Compare can, ken, keen.

  1. A metaphorical phrase used in Germanic poetry (especially Old English or Old Norse) whereby a simple thing is described in an allusive way, such as ‘whale road’ for ‘sea’, or ‘enemy of the mast’ for ‘wind’.

    kenning was also found in the following language(s): Icelandic

    Notable Persons With the Last Name Kenning

    Mike Kenning is a soccer player for the Aston Villa F.C., Shrewsbury Town F.C., Charlton Athletic F.C., Norwich City F.C., Wolverhampton Wanderers F.C., Watford F.C., and Atherstone Town F.C. Mike was born on August 18th, 1940 in Birmingham.


    Sir George Kenning was an entrepreneur in the motor trade. George was born on May 21st, 1880 in Clay Cross, Derbyshire, England. He breathed his last breath on February 6th, 1956.


    Alfred Franklin Kenning was an MPP for Cochrane South. Alfred was born on June 3rd, 1885 in Pembroke, Ontario. He died on October 22nd, 1938.


    Where is the name Kenning popular?

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    Popularity of Kenning as a last name

    The map shows the absolute popularity of the name Kenning as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in Illinois, Ohio, or Iowa.

    Common first names for Kenning

    Ethnicity Distribution

    Ethnicity Kenning U.S.
      White 95.92% 64.26%
      African American 0.00% 11.96%
      Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.92% 4.85%
      American Indian and Alaska Native 0.00% 0.69%
      Two or More Ethnicities 0.79% 1.76%
      Hispanic or Latino 1.84% 16.26%

    Of Last Name Kenning

    People with the last name Kenning are most frequently White

    Entire United States

    Fun Facts about the name Kenning

    • How Popular is the name Kenning? As a last name Kenning was the 30,701st most popular name in 2010.
    • When was the first name Kenning first recorded in the United States? The oldest recorded birth by the Social Security Administration for the name Kenning is Sunday, March 20th, 1898.
    • How unique is the name Kenning? From 1880 to 2017 less than 5 people per year have been born with the first name Kenning. Hoorah! You are a unique individual.
    • Weird things about the name Kenning: Your name in reverse order is Gninnek. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Gnennik. How do you pronounce that?
    • How many people have the last name Kenning? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 759 people with the last name Kenning.
    • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Kenning? Chances are, most people haven't met someone with Kenning as their last name since less than 1 person in 385k people have that last name. If you know one, consider yourself lucky!

    What Kennings Have Visited This Page?

    Name poster for Kenning

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    • Sources:
    • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
    • 1913 Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary via the Collaborative International Dictionary of English (License)
    • Other Dictionary Sources: WordNet 3.1 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University (License).
    • Wiktionary: Titles and License.
    • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.