Grimkettle, Ulfkettle ...

Grimkettle Tough, strong, hard as nails kettle.
Osketil=Asketil Divine Kettle, cauldron of the gods. As, plural Aesir = gods. Jordanes 'Gothic history' says that there is a Germanic legend that kings were descended from great heroes known as Anses, an earlier form of Aesir.
Steinketil Stone kettle.
Thurketil Thor's cauldron.
Ulfketil=Wulfketil Wolf kettle.

First would come the name Ketil and then in time numerous variations and compound names were invented, to alleviate the monotony I suppose. If a family wished to invoke the power of their patron deity, such as Thor, then they might give a name such as Thurcetel. On the other hand, sometimes a compound name is given by a warrior's comrades, as a nickname. Thus a fellow named Ketil who had the ferocity of a wolf might be nicknamed Ulf-ketil and then later on the actual name Ulfketil could be given to that fellow's nephew or grandson. A fighter who was as hard as a rock in battle might be nicknamed Stein-ketil. Grimketil could have been created the same way for all we know.

Source: J.O. (Medieval historian)


Until the 13th century surnames were not commonly used in England and the name Ketil was not necessarily passed from father to son, though I have seen several instances of Ketil variants passed within a family eg uncle Ketel, nephew Ulfketel. It is normally a male name but I have seen female Ketele (Norway c12th century) and Ketteløg (Sweden c11th century).

Source: Anna Kettle


Kettle, Kettel, Kettelle, Ketel, Ketil, Cytel, Chetil. The sacrificial cauldron of northern mythology. A large number of surnames are founded on Kettle and its components: Chettle, Oskettle, Arkettle, Grimkettle, Steinkettle, Wulfkettle also their abbreviations such as Kell, Chell, Oskell, Arkell, Thurkle etc.

Source: A dictionary of English and Welsh surnames - Bardsley CW

Last update
24 December 1998
Kettle Genealogy
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