cunningham clan

Cunningham Crest Jewelry - Signet Rings, Pendants, Cufflinks, Bracelets and more - Direct from the manufacturers.

There are several spelling variations for the Clan Cunningham surname. Included are families (known as Septs) with different surnames from the original Clan name. Throughout the centuries, surnames have continued to “develop” often leading to astonishing variants of the original Cunningham spelling. 

The Cunningham Clan Crest which, all members are entitled to wear, is from the crest on the top of the Clan Cunningham Chief’s “Coat of Arms”. The complete Cunningham Coat of Arms is displayed only by the Clan Chief and passes down directly to his eldest son. The wearing of your Clan Chief’s Crest, is a way of honoring your Chief, your Clan association and your Cunningham Family Ancestry.

We make this Scottish collection of Clan Cunningham Crest Jewelry and Wall Crest as your link to your Scottish Ancestry.

cunningham clan Crest Items



Clan Chief:                No Clan Chief currently exists.

Last Clan Chief:        John Cunningham, the 14th Earl of Glencairn,

                             died without issue in 1796.

Gaelic Name:            Cuinneag 

Origin of name:        Placename, Ayrshire.

Clan Crest:                A Unicorn's head.

Clan Motto:               Over Fork Over.

Clan seat:                 Caprington Castle, Kilmarnock, Ayrshire.


The Clan Cunningham motto, "over fork over", refers to a story of Malcolm  Canmore, the prince of Scotland, who was fleeing from the soldiers of King Macbeth.  Whilst trying to escape, Malcolm came upon a hay farmer who is said to have buried him "Over, fork over" with hay, to hide him.  This may seem like an insignificant thing to base a Clan motto upon, but with his succession to the throne King Malcolm 111 effectively bestowed the Cunningham area in the Ayrshire region to the young hay farmer. The farmers name was Malcolm Friskin, and although he did not take up the name of Cunningham himself, it was adopted by further generations of the family.

Further land was given to Clan Cunningham by Robert the Bruce for their support of him during his rising to King, the new land was mostly what is now known a Lumberton in 1319.  The Clan Cunningham spread further still, through marriages between the Cunningham Clan and other families, to what it is today.

The last Chief of Clan Cunningham, John Cunningham,15th Earl of Glencairn died on September 29th, 1796, leaving no heirs. In 2003, restoration and a new monument of a carving of the Clencairn Arms,was comissioned from the Lord Lyon King of Arms, and erected at the church located just below Edinburgh Castle, adjacent to the Princess Gardens. Thus creating a wonderful focal point for Cunningham clansmen lucky enough to be visiting Edinburgh.

The Clan Cunningham Crest is adorned with a unicorn. In ancient tradition the unicorn is meant to represent "extreme courage, strength and virtue"  and Clan Cunningham has been blessed with a number of talented members who fit this description.  These have included Alexander Cunningham a famed historical writer; Charles Cunningham, an artist, whose work which still hang today in the Hermitage Palace in St Petersburg and in Berlin; and Alan Cunningham, a poet and writer who during his life enjoyed fame and upon his death a song was dedicated to him by Robert Burns. 

"The mother may forget the child that smiles sae sweetly on her knee:

But I'll remember thee, Glencairn, and a' that thou hast done for me."

His work was also supported by Sir Walter Scott who provided for his two sons after his death in 1828.

The Cunningham Clan Crest shows a Unicorn’s head and the proud Cunningham clan motto "Over fork over"


Our Scottish Heritage is the common bond that unites our Cunningham family name forever.

Septs/Spelling Variations of CUNNINGHAM CLAN