The name Cushnie is from a place of that name in the parish of Ieochel,
Aberdeenshire. The name is derived from the French word "cuisse"
meaning thigh. When armor was made in medieval times, leather was used
for making the part covering the thigh, making it more flexible when
walking or riding a horse. Many people derived their names from their
occupations, hence those who worked with this particular part of the
armor were called Cuisse or, later, Cusne.
The French influence came about because Scotland had a French queen
in 1186. Even Scottish cooking had a French flair. Haggis and the new
year celebration, hogmanay, are of French origin.
Since only the well educated could read and write, many different spellings
resulted. Hence, Cushney, Cushny, Cowsney, Cousney, Cusney and even
MacQuisten are thought to be different spellings of the same name.
The first mention in a legal document was John Cusne in 1508. Another
spelling was Cuschnye in 1629 and later Cuschnie in 1633.
Partial Family Tree