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Harkness (surname)

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  Harkness is a Scottish surname. Its etymology is probably from the Old English personal name Hereca (a derivative of the various compound names with the first element here army) plus the Old English næss headland, cape. The name is first recorded along the Cumbrian border (1350). By the 15th century they were firmly established in Nithsdale area of Dumfriesshire. James Harkness of Locherben led the rescue in 1684 of a group of Covenanters who were being taken for trial in Edinburgh. For this act his brother was hanged the following year.


There are two tartans that are recognized for the Harknesses of Nithsdale clan. One is the traditional red, and the other is the "ancient" blue. Both tartans were created by Harvey Harkness Rulien in 1982.

Family name

People with the surname include:
  • Alistair Harkness - an Australian politician
  • Anna M. Harkness - an American philanthropist
  • Anthony Harkness - an American inventor
  • Charles W. Harkness - heir to Standard Oil fortune and namesake of Harkness Tower at Yale University
  • Daniel Harkness - an American university professor
  • Daniel M. Harkness - an American businessman and early Standard Oil investor
  • Deborah Harkness - Author and historian
  • Douglas Harkness - a Canadian politician
  • Edward Harkness - an American philanthropist
  • Georgia Harkness - an American Christian theologian
  • H. W. Harkness – an American mycologist and natural historian
  • James Harkness - mathematician
  • John Granville Harkness - a British major-general
  • Kenneth Harkness - manager of the United States Chess Federation
  • Lamon V. Harkness - an American businessman, heir to Standard Oil fortune and important Standardbred horse breeder
  • Mark Harkness - a county commissioner in Nacogdoches, TX 2018- ?
  • Nancy Harkness Love - an American pilot
  • Ned Harkness - a college and NHL coach
  • Rebekah Harkness - founder of the Harkness Ballet
  • Robert Harkness - an English geologist
  • Ruth Harkness - American fashion designer and socialite who brought the first giant panda to the western world
  • Stephen V. Harkness - best friend and business partner of John D. Rockefeller
  • William L. Harkness - heir to Standard Oil fortune
  • Colin Harkness..English Vocalist/ Musician/ Composer

Fictional characters with the name

  • Agatha Harkness - a witch in the Marvel Comics universe
  • Horace Harkness - a naval officer in the 'Honorverse'
  • Captain Harkness - Captain of the torchship Mayflower in Farmer in the Sky, by Robert A. Heinlein
  • Captain Jack Harkness, one of the main protagonists in the fictional television series Torchwood and a companion of the television series Doctor Who
  • George "Digger" Harkness aka Captain Boomerang - a supervillain from the DC Comics universe
  • Harkness - Rivet City security officer in the video game Fallout 3
  • Gary Harkness - University student and football player in Endzone, novel by Don DeLillo
Anna May Harkness as portrayed by Viola Davis on “How to get Away with Murder” a television series on ABC.

See also

  • Jack Harkness (disambiguation)
  • John Harkness (disambiguation)
  • name meaning

  • Category:Surnames

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