This surname was first recorded in 1417 on the Militia Roster as Bonel(l), Bonelli/u and Bunello/u.
Almost certainly a diminutive form of the Italian surname Bono, meaning "good, gracious, virtuous". It may also derive from another Italian surname, Bonallo, from the French bonaillie and refers to "a toast drunk before parting ways".
Dating back to the sixteenth century, the Bonello coat of arms is one of the oldest known to Malta. The Quterfoil represents revival, purity and eagerness.