Sonny Eanes Admits to Being a Sephardic Jew

The headline is not quite accurate, but it is indirectly true, and it is fitting. What Sonny Eanes really admitted to is being a descendant of Edward Eanes, who came to Virginia in the early 18th century.

It may be possible, as some sources suggest but do not document, that the name Eanes could be of French origin. But it is historically verifiable that Edward Eanes was a Sephardic Jew, of a family of Jews which had fled persecution in Portugal and moved to Wales.

Now Sonny Eanes has often claimed his name is of French origin, and that he is not a Jew. However on the other hand, Sonny has also admitted that he descended from this particular Edward Eanes, who is verifiably a Jew. Here is one instance of Sonny's admission, from his own Facebook page, posted in October of 2017:


Here is a Wikitree page where Sonny's cousins, by his own admission, discuss their family history, and it is fully evident that Edward Eanes was a marrano Jew: Wikitree Edward Eanes (1700 - 1757)

There is also a Google Discussion discussion on the Sephardic Jewish origin of the Eanes surname, as well as a notice on message boards. A website for the Canary Islands boasts that Eanes was one of the most common names there at one time, and that it is of Sephardic Jewish origin. There is also a Wordpress site specifically created for Eanes Family History

The Eanes name shows up on a list of Portuguese surnames in Lisbon in 1565, and it is stated to be "From Johão", the Portuguese equivalent of the English John. That is because Eanes is a variation of Yanez, the Jewish version of John in Portugal, as some of these other sources have stated. This list betrays Sonny's claim that Eanes is French, as the name has a definite etymology from Portuguese Jews.The name Eanes is also an example of Portuguese names on a related article at Wikivisually, and it is explained at that it comes from Yanez, which other sources state is the Portuguese Jewish spelling of the English name John. This is also verified at Wikizero, in an artile on Patronyms, and a similar article at the full wiki.

Moses Cohen Henriques Eanes was a Sephardic Jewish pirate. Sonny's behavior follows his predecessor quite closely, but Sonny is nowhere as adventurous. Sonny bragged about his family's musical tradition. Bluegrass musician Jim Eanes was also said to be a Sephardic Jew in his Wikipedia biography, and was a descendant of Edward Eanes.

In all of these places, which provide documentation for the Sephardic Jewish origin of the Eanes name, and specifically of Edward Eanes, members of the Eanes family who engage in the discussions are all proud of their Sephardic Jewish heritage. Sonny himself has admitted to being their cousin.

We cannot find credible information or a credible etymology for a non-Jewish Eanes family or Eanes surname. It is only claimed that it could be French, but never demonstrated how it could be French except by a few vague similarities with French words that are unconvincing.

See the list of exclusively Sephardic surnames here on the Anthroscape page at Tapatalk.

Norman "Sonny" Eanes is a Sephardic Marrano Jew.


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