The English surname Bryant, also found in Scotland and Ireland, is a Norman habitational name from either of two places called Brionne in northern France (in Eure and Creuse). When found in Ireland the name derives from the Celtic personal name Brian. Breton bearers of this name were among the Normans who invaded England in 1066, and they went on to invade and settle in Ireland in the 12th century, where the name mingled with the native Irish name Brian. The first written reference to the name was Ralph Brien, in the "Feudal Documents from the Abbey of Bury St. Edmund's", Suffolk in 1160. The American poet William Cullen Bryant (1794 - 1878) came of a New England family, being descended from Stephen Bryant, who had settled in Plymouth Colony in 1632. Today there are approximately 184,000 bearers of the surname Bryant living in The United States.
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