Family Crest


Matches 1 to 50 of 356     » Thumbnails Only    » Slide Show

    1 2 3 4 5 ... Next»

 #   Thumb   Description   Linked to 
1
Abbey Family Crest
Abbey Family Crest
Recorded in many spelling forms including the French and English Abba, Abbay, Abbe, Abbey, Abbate, Abbatt, Labbe, Labbey, Labey, Abade, the Scottish Abbie and Abbe, and the Italian Abbattini, Dell'Abate or Degli Abbati, this most interesting and unusual surname is of Olde French pre 10th century origins. It derives from the word "abet" which usually means a priest, but may have also, particularly in Italy, have referrred to a local chief or an official master of ceremonies. This indicates that several origins are possible, including a nickname for one who was thought to be rather "priestly" in his characteristics, or an occupational or status name for a local chief or official, or that it may be theatrical and a "casting" name for an actor, one who played the part of a priest in the famous travelling theatres of the medieval period. Despite the first recording shown below the name is unlikely, as a hereditary surname, to have originated from an actual abbe or priest. These members of the clergy since the 11th century, have been expected to be unmarried and celibate. Whether they were or not is open to some discussion, particulary as occasionally this surname is recorded as a patronymic or diminutive, indicating the "son of the abbe!". The surname is first recorded in any form anywhere in the world in England in 1177, when Ralph Le Abbe appears in the charters of London during the reign of King Henry 11 (1154 - 1189). Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling 
 
2
Abbott Family Crest
Abbott Family Crest
This ancient surname is generally of early English origins, predating the Anglo-Saxons and Normans. It was usually an occupational name for a person employed by an abbot, or perhaps a nickname for one who was thought to conduct himself like an abbot! It is also possible that in some cases the name may refer to the offspring of an Abbot, however as the clergy were supposed to be celibrate there is an area of doubt. The surname also occurs widely in Scotland where it is either of English origin or a translation of MacNab, which also means 'son of the abbot'. The original spelling was 'abbod', Ralph Abbod being recorded in Somerset in 1272. The patronymic is usually indicated by the suffix 's', and very occasionally as 'Abbotson', Dorothy Abbotson being recorded at St Botolphs Bishopgate, London, on November 11th 1823. The various spellings include such rare forms as Habbett and Labbet. Early recording examples include Walter Abat, in the Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire in 1219, and Elizabeth Abbet, who married Henry Waterman at the church of St Lawrence Poutney, London, on January 11th 1600. George Abbot (1562 - 1633) was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury in 1611, whilst Elizabeth Abbitt was recorded as 'living in Virginea, over the river' on February 16th 1623, making her one of America's earliest colonists. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name has the blazon of a red field, a gold chevron between three golden pears. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter Abbot, which was dated circa 1190, in the Danelaw records of Lincolnshire, during the reign of King Richard 1, known as 'Richard the Lionheart', 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
3
Abell Family Crest
Abell Family Crest
This most interesting and unusual surname is Anglo-Scottish. It was mainly introduced by returning 12th century Crusaders and pilgrims from the Holy Land. 'Abel' derives from the Hebrew given name 'Hevel' meaning 'breath or vigour', and was presumably a name of endearment or possibly a nickname. As a personal name 'Abel' (Hevel) was borne by the son of Adam, who was murdered by his brother Cain. It was very popular as a given name in Christendom during the Middle Ages, when there was a cult of 'suffering innocence' which Abel represented. For reasons unclear the early surname was widespread in the east of England and Southern Scotland, and is well represented in its various forms in the registers of the area. The surname is now recorded in the modern spellings of Abel, Able, Abele, Abelle, and the patronymic Abels, Abeles, Abells, Abelson and Ableson. Early examples of the surname recordings include Richard Abel of Buckinghamshire in the 1273 Hundred rolls of the county, and Thomas Abell in the Subsidy Rolls of Yorkshire for the year 1301. The surname is also well recorded in Scotland from an early date, Master Abel being recorded in the rolls of the abbey of Kelso in 1235, whilst Thomas Abell, was a burgess of Edinburgh in the year 1387. The coat of arms is very distinctive having the blazon of a silver field, charged with twelve gold fleur de lis on a saltire of blue. The crest being an arm in armour holding a sword enfiled with a wreath. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Abel, which was dated 1197, in the Pipe Rolls of the county of Essex, during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
['More Links'] 
4
Abernathy Family Crest
Abernathy Family Crest
Scottish: habitational name from Abernethy in southeastern Perthshire. The place name is of Pictish origin, meaning ‘mouth of the river Nethy’.  
 
5
Abrahams Family Crest
Abrahams Family Crest
This long-established surname, recorded in the spellings of Abraham, Abrahams, Abrahamson, the latter two being patronymics, and the abbreviated Abrams, also a apparent patronymic, is of 12th century origin, and a 'Crusader' introduction into Britain. As such it was not Jewish, although of Hebrew influence. It is one of a group such as Isaac, Joseph, and Abel, which were given by the returning Christian soldiers to their sons in recognition of their 'visit' to the Holy Land. These subsequently developed into English surnames in their own right. 'Abraham' translates as 'The father of the nation', and as such was borne by the first of the Jewish patriarchs, (Genesis 11-25). The 1086 Domesday Book for London refers to 'Abraham', a priest in the established (Christian) church, whilst in 1170 Abraham de Stradtuna was recorded in the Danelaw rolls of Lincolnshire. As a Jewish surname it was revived after the 'reign' of Oliver Cromwell (1649 - 1658), who in 1655 repealed the exile order of Edward 1st in 1290, and allowed the re-settlement of the Jewish people in Britain. The earliest recordings include John Abraham of Bedford in the Hundred Rolls of 1273, and Magota Abrahams in the 1379 Poll Tax rolls of Yorkshire. Later recordings include Sarah Abram, who was christened at the church of St. Mary Abbots, Kensington, London, on November 5th 1646, whilst on June 17th 1666 Richard Abrahams was christened at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name has a shield of lozengy, gold and red, on a black chief the sun in his splendour, gold. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Abraham, which was dated 1197, in the pipe rolls of Northamptonshire, during the reign of King Richard 1st, known as 'The Lionheart', 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
6
Abrams Family Crest
Abrams Family Crest
This long-established surname is of early medieval English origin, and is a patronymic form of the Hebrew male given name "Avraham", originally "Abram", "high father", later changed to "Abraham", "father of a multitude (of nations)". This name was borne by the first of the Jewish patriarchs, ancestor of all the Israelites (Genesis 11-25), and Abraham was the name of a priest in the Domesday Book of 1086. In 1170, one Abraham de Stradtuna was noted in the Documents relating to the Danelaw, Lincolnshire. This personal name was used to some extent among Christians in the Middle Ages, and has always been a popular Jewish given name. It was greatly revived after the Reformation, and was particularly popular in the Low Countries where it reverted to its original form of Abram, which is still used there, as it is in Wales. The first bearer of the extended form of the surname was John Abraham (Northamptonshire, 1193), and in 1273, one John Abraam was noted in the Hundred Rolls of Bedfordshire. Modern patronymic forms include: Abrahams, Abrams, Abrahamson and Abramson. On November 5th 1646, Sarah, daughter of Andrew and Gillian Abrams, was christened at St. Mary Abbots, Kensington, London. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name is a shield lozengy gold and red, on a black chief the sun in his splendour, gold, the Crest being a cap of maintenance decorated with a plume of ostrich feathers, all proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Abram, which was dated 1252, in the "Chartulary of the Monastery of Ramsey", Huntingdonshire, during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
7
Abramson Family Crest
Abramson Family Crest
This long-established surname is of early medieval English origin, and is a patronymic form of the Hebrew male given name "Avraham", originally "Abram", "high father", later changed to "Abraham", "father of a multitude (of nations)". This name was borne by the first of the Jewish patriarchs, ancestor of all the Israelites (Genesis 11-25), and Abraham was the name of a priest in the Domesday Book of 1086. In 1170, one Abraham de Stradtuna was noted in the Documents relating to the Danelaw, Lincolnshire. This personal name was used to some extent among Christians in the Middle Ages, and has always been a popular Jewish given name. It was greatly revived after the Reformation, and was particularly popular in the Low Countries where it reverted to its original form of Abram, which is still used there, as it is in Wales. The first bearer of the extended form of the surname was John Abraham (Northamptonshire, 1193), and in 1273, one John Abraam was noted in the Hundred Rolls of Bedfordshire. Modern patronymic forms include: Abrahams, Abrams, Abrahamson and Abramson. On November 5th 1646, Sarah, daughter of Andrew and Gillian Abrams, was christened at St. Mary Abbots, Kensington, London. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name is a shield lozengy gold and red, on a black chief the sun in his splendour, gold, the Crest being a cap of maintenance decorated with a plume of ostrich feathers, all proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Abram, which was dated 1252, in the "Chartulary of the Monastery of Ramsey", Huntingdonshire, during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
8
Ackerman Family Crest
Ackerman Family Crest
This long-established surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a status name for a bond tenant who was employed as a ploughman for a manor. The derivation is from the Olde English pre 7th Century "aecermann", a compound of "aecer", field, ploughed land, cognate with the Old Norse "akr", and "mann", man. On many medieval manors there were separate tenements held by "acremen" in return for ploughing service, and a quotation from "Lay le Freine" reads, "The foules up, and song on bough, And acremen yeld to the plough". Early examples of the surname include: Robert le Akerman (Essex, 1233); Roger le Acreman (Oxfordshire, 1273); and Hugh Akerman (Cambridgeshire, 1273). The "Historical English Dictionary", dated 1389, tells us that "both prestis and knightis mosten bicome acremen and heerdis". In the modern idiom the surname has four spelling variations: Ackerman(n), Akerman and Acreman. On August 15th 1568, Anna Ackerman and John Habet were married at St. Dionis Backchurch, London. A notable namebearer mentioned in the "National Biography" was Rudolph Ackermann who, in 1801, patented a method for making articles waterproof, and established art lithography in England (1817). A Coat of Arms granted to the Ackerman family in 1761 is described thus: Quarterly per fesse indented first and fourth gules, in chief a maunch argent, in base an acorn sprig or, second and 3rd or, three dragons' heads couped of the first. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Acreman, which was dated 1100, in the "Chartulary of Ramsey Abbey", Huntingdonshire, during the reign of King Henry 1, known as "The Lion of Justice", 1100 - 1135. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
9
Ackley Family Crest
Ackley Family Crest
English: from any of various places named in Old English as ac leah ‘oak clearing’. Possible sources include Acle in Norfolk, Aykley in Durham, and Ackley Farm in Powys. Compare Oakley, which has the same origin. Americanized spelling of Swiss German Egli. 
 
10
Acott Family Crest
Acott Family Crest
This unusual name is a variation of the English and French surname "Court", also found as "A'Court" with the Anglo-Norman French preposition. It was used as an occupational or a habitation name for one who lived or worked at a manorial court. The derivation is from the Middle English "court(e)", or "curt", meaning "court", from the Latin "cohors", a yard or enclosure. The word was mainly used with reference to the residence of the lord of a manor. It is also possible that "Acott" is derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century "atte cott", which denotes residence "at the cottage". One Joseph Acott was christened in London in 1747, and Elizabeth Acott married James Cary on December 29th 1785, at St. Michael's, Bath, Somerset. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Joan Acott, which was dated June 22nd 1673, marriage to William Manchester, at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London, during the reign of King Charles 11, known as "The Merry Monarch", 1660 - 1685. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
11
Alcock Family Crest
Alcock Family Crest
This is a very English name, coming from a diminutive of various male personal names beginning with "Al", particularly Alan, Albert, Alban and Alexander, with the popular medieval suffix "cock", from the Olde English pre 7th Century "cocc", Middle English (1200 - 1500) "cok", used here as a nickname from the bird. The application of the nickname could be for various reasons, it was most often used for a young lad who strutted around in a pert and aggressive manner, and as such soon became a generic name for young men, and was added to the short forms of many medieval names, such as Allcock, Hancock and Hiscock. The nickname may also have applied to an early riser or to a natural leader. The name can be spelt Allcock or Alcock. Recordings from London Church Registers include the marriage of John Alcock and Agnes White on October 4th 1545, at St. Mary Magdalene's, Old Fish Street, and the christening of Dorothie, daughter of Thomas Alcock, on June 16th 1550, at St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alexander Alecoc, which was dated 1275, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
12
Alsace Coat of Arms
Alsace Coat of Arms
Faust Name Meaning. German, Jewish (Ashkenazic), and French (Alsace-Lorraine): from Middle High German fust 'fist', presumably a nickname for a strong or pugnacious person or for someone with a club hand or other deformity of the hand. 
 
13
Ames Family Crest
Ames Family Crest
This interesting and long-established surname is of medieval English origin, and derives from the Old French given name (or nickname) "Amis", the oblique case of "Ami", Friend, ultimately from the Latin "amicus", a derivative of "amare", to love. The name was introduced into England after the Norman Conquest of 1066, and the forms "Amicia" (feminine) and "Amisius" (masculine) are recorded respectively in Documents relating to the Danelaw, Lincolnshire, dated 1189, and in the Curia Regis Rolls of Hertfordshire, dated 1211. One Rogerus filius (son of) Ami was noted in the Chartulary of Ramsey Abbey, Norfolk, circa 1250, and a Robert Amys appears in the 1273 Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire. On January 18th 1573, William, son of Richard Ames, was christened in Dunstable, Bedfordshire. Notable bearers of the name were William Ames (1576 - 1633), the Arminian minister at Rotterdam in 1613, and professor of theology, Franeker (1622), and Joseph Ames (1689 - 1759), bibliographer and antiquary, who became a fellow of the Royal Society in 1743. On May 11th 1637, Joane Ames, of Yarmouth, a widow, aged 50 yrs., with her three children Ruth, William and John, were listed in a register of those "desirous to passe for New England and there to inhabitt and remaine". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert Amis, which was dated 1221, in "Medieval Records of Suffolk", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
['More Links'] 
14
Amyas Family Crest
Amyas Family Crest
Latin Meaning: ... In Latin the meaning of the name Amyas is: Loves God. French Meaning: The name Amyas is a French baby name. In French the meaning of the name Amyas is: From the Old French name derived from Latin 'amatus' meaning loved. 
 
15
Anjou Family Crest
Anjou Family Crest
The name Anjou is a Shakespearean baby name. In Shakespearean the meaning of the name Anjou is: Henry VI, Part 1' Reignier, Duke of Anjou, and titular King of Naples. 
 
16
Appleton Family Crest
Appleton Family Crest
This name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is locational from any of the several places thus called, for example Appleton in Cumberland, Lancashire, Yorkshire, Norfolk, Cheshire, Berkshire and Kent. Recorded as "Apeltun" and "Epletune" in the Domesday Book of 1086 for the various counties, the name derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century "aeppeltun", an orchard, a compound of "aeppel", an apple, plus "tun", an enclosure or settlement. The surname is first recorded in the latter half of the 12th Century (see below), and other early recordings include: Thomas de Appleton, who appeared in the 1196 Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire, and William de Appleton, who was Rector of Titchwell, Norfolk, in 1376. Recordings from London Church Registers include: the marriage of John Appleton and Elizabeth Mylls on June 2nd 1561, at St. Dunstan in the East, and the christening of John, son of John Appleton, on January 30th 1567, at St. Botolph without Aldgate. In 1622, one Richard Appleton, aged 19 yrs., appears on a list of early emigrants into Elizabeth City, Virginia. Henry Appleton (flourished circa 1650) was a navy Captain and Commodore who served in the Dutch War (1652). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hemeri de Lepeltone, which was dated circa 1182, in the "Red Book of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
17
Arcand Family Crest
Arcand Family Crest
French: of uncertain origin, perhaps from a personal name containing the Old High German element ercan 'precious', 'excellent' (borrowed, via Latin, from Greek archi- 'the first', 'the highest'). 
 
18
Arderne Family Crest
Arderne Family Crest
This interesting surname has a very ancient history either of Celtic or Anglo-Saxon origin. It is a regional name either from Arden, north east of Stockport in Cheshire, or from the district thus called in Warwickshire where the old forest, supposed to be the origin of Shakespeare's "Forest of Arden", is situated. Both places were initially recorded as "Arderne" in the 13th Century Curia Regis Rolls of the respective counties, and are believed to be linguistically identical with the forest of the Ardennes in France and Belgium, so called from a Celtic word meaning "high". Alternatively, the name may be Anglo-Saxon in origin, derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century "eardaern", dwelling-house. The surname has the distinction of being first recorded in the Domesday Book, and the namebearer is shown to have held more lands than any other non-Norman Englishman. One Heloise de Arderne was noted in early medieval records of Norfolk, dated 1171, and 13th Century entries of the name abound in Cheshire Church Registers. They include the birth of Walkelyn de Arderne, son of John de Arderne and Margaret de Aldford, at Aldford, in 1216. A notable bearer of the name was John Arderne (flourished 1370), known as "the first great English surgeon". No less than twenty Coats of Arms have been granted to this illustrious family, the one most associated with the name being a red shield with six crosses crosslet fitchee, and a gold chief. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thurkill de Warwick, also known as Thurkill de Arden, which was dated circa 1085, in the Domesday Book of Warwickshire, during the reign of King William 1, known as "William the Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling 
 
19
Arellano Family Crest
Arellano Family Crest
 
 
20
Argue Family Crest
Argue Family Crest
This rare surname is of medieval English origins, although with French and Roman overtones. It is recorded in the modern surname spellings of Argen, Argon, Argent, Argo, Argoe, Argue, Hargy, Hargerie, and no doubts others as well. All are quite rare, although 'Argue' is relatively popular in Northern Ireland, David Argue being recorded at Dromore, County Down, on April 4th 1795, and Catherine Argo, at the same place on August 4th 1821. The name however spelt is either a nickname for a person with silver-grey hair, or it is locational and of French origin, from one of the several French villages called 'Argent', or finally it is possible that it may be occupational for either a silver smith, or possibly one who worked in a silver mine. The name development and recordings include John Largent in the Suffolk Hearth Tax rolls of 1524, Aaron Argoe christened at St Botolphs without Aldgate, London, on April 28th 1605, Johannes Argo, the son of Phillipi and Mariam Argo, on August 14th 1664, and William Argent of St Margarets, Westminster, on July 7th 1686. Maria Hargie was recorded in Stepney on September 8th 1859 and again on April 13th 1864 when the spelling had changed to Harrgie! It is interesting to note that Robert Hargerie of York, married his wife Elizabeth (Auston) during the Great Siege of the city, by the forces of Parliament, from April to July 2nd 1644. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Geoffrey Argent, which was dated 1180, the pipe rolls of the county of Northampton, during the reign of King Henry 11, known as 'The church builder', 1154 - 1189. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
21
Armitage Family Crest
Armitage Family Crest
Recorded in a number of spellings including Armitage, Armytage, Armatidge, Hermitage and others, this is an Anglo-French surname. It derives from the Old French word "hermite", from the Greek "eremos", meaning solitary, and was originally given either as a topographical name to someone who lived by a hermitage, or a place of learning, or as a locational name from any of the places named with the above word. These places include Hermitage in Durham, Northumberland, Dorset, Berkshire and Sussex, and Armitage in Staffordshire. Early examples of the surname include: Hugh del Hermytage (Warwickshire, 1296); Willelmus del Ermytache (Yorkshire, 1379); and John de Armitage (Sheffield, Yorkshire, 1423). In April 1596, William Armitage, rector of Billingford, Norfolk, was noted in Ecclesiastical Records of that county. Most name bearers can apparently be traced back to a family living at Armitage Bridge, near Huddersfield, in West Yorkshire, in the 13th Century, and it is in Yorkshire that the name is still most widespread. Early settlers in North America include; Henry Armitage, who left the Barbados Islands on the ship "Society" bound for Boston in March 1678, and Enoch Armitage of Wooldale, Yorkshire, who settled in America after 1677. The family Coat of Arms is red with a lion's head erased between three silver cross crosslets. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de Ermitage, which was dated 1259, witness, in the "Assize Court Rolls of Cheshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
22
Armstrong Family Crest
Armstrong Family Crest
After William 1 conquered England in 1066, he rewarded his followers with land grants. Amongst these followers were ones known as "Forten Bras" which literally translates as "strong in the arm", itself a rare surname, and from these people developed the Armstrangs or Armstrongs. The clan has always been centred in Liddesdale in Cumbria, where its fierce and warlike members were enlisted by the Scottish and English kings in turn. The terms "Moss Troopers" and "Border Reivers" were applied to the clan Armstrong, the history of the clan being the history of "The Border" and the wars between England and Scotland. As examples of their "strength", in 1342, Richard Harmestrang made a loan to King David 11 (1329 - 1371) of Scotland, whilst in 1363, William Armstrong was not only steward to the king, but ambassador to England. However, it is in the field of (literally) private enterprise that the Armstrongs made their mark, Armstrong of Gilnockie, a well known "free booter", being executed by James V of Scotland in 1529, whilst in 1596, Kinmont Willie (Armstrong), another "pirate" was seized by the Scots from Carlisle Castle, his subsequent fate is "unknown". Another unfortunate was Sir Thomas Armstrong (1624 - 1684), a well known monarchist, who fell foul of Judge Jeffreys and was executed. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam Armstrong, which was dated 1235, arrested and imprisoned for murder and later pardoned at Carlisle, during the reign of King Alexander 11 of Scotland, 1214 - 1249. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling 
 
23
Ashmore Family Crest
Ashmore Family Crest
This interesting surname is of English locational origin from a place so called in Dorset. The placename was recorded as "Aisemare" in the Domesday Book of 1086, and derives from either the Old English pre 7th Century "aesc" meaning ash plus "mere" a lake; hence "lake where ash-trees grow" or as the place is on the Wiltshire border it may be from the Old English personal name "Aesca" plus "(ge)maere" a boundary; hence "Aesca's boundary". The surname may also be from any of several minor places composed of the Old English elements "aesc" ash plus "mor" a marsh or fen. In the modern idiom the surname has many variant spellings including Ashemore, Asmore, Ashmoore, Ashmere, etc.. On July 19th 1562, John, son of John Ashmore, was christened at St. Michael's, Cornhill, and Elizabeth daughter of Roger Ashmore was christened on October 20th 1596, at St. Dunstans, Stepney. One of the earliest settlers in the New World was Anthony Ashmore aged 33, who departed from the Port of London, aboard the "Expedition", bound for the Barbados on November 20th 1635. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Ashemore, witness at christening, which was dated May 11th 1561, St. Michael, Cornhill, London, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
24
Assheton Family Crest
Assheton Family Crest
An old Lancashire family, originally seated at Assheton-under-Lyne, unde nomen. From them proceeded two lines of baronets, and the Asshetons of Downham. Shirley's Noble and Gentle Men. 
 
25
Auditheley Family Crest
Auditheley Family Crest
 
 
26
Babcock Family Crest
Babcock Family Crest
This interesting surname is of early medieval English origin, and is a diminutive of the baptismal name "Babb". The medieval female given name "Babb" is a pet form of Barbara, deriving from the Greek term "barbaros" meaning "foreigner", which was borne by an enormously popular but almost certainly non-existent saint, who according to legend was imprisoned in a tower and later put to death by her own father for refusing to recant her Christian beliefs. Babb may also be a nickname from the Middle English "bab(e)", baby. However, a more probable source is from the Olde English pre 7th Century personal name "Babba", of uncertain origin, found in several placenames, including Babbacombe in Devon, and Babington in Somerset. The suffix "-cock", applied to a young lad who strutted proudly like a cock, and soon became a generic term for a youth, and was attached with hypocoristic force to the short forms of many medieval given names. Alwinus Babb is noted in the 1198 Feet of Fines of Sussex. On July 26th 1649, the marriage of Elizabeth Babcock and Robert Holiday took place in Snaith, Yorkshire, and the marriage of Margaret Babcock and Thomas Thornley took place at Manchester Cathedral, Lancashire, on November 17th 1751. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Edward Babcock, which was dated November 16th 1578, marriage to Janet Spencer, at Halifax, Yorkshire, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
['More Links'] 
27
Bache Family Crest
Bache Family Crest
This rare and interesting surname is a variant of Boik, which is of English and German origin and is a topographical name for someone who lived by a stream, deriving from the Middle High German "back" or the Middle English "bache". The surname dates back to the early 13th Century (see below). Further recordings include one Ralph de la Bache (1252), "The Rydeware Chartulary, Staffordshire", and William atte Bache (1327), "The Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire". Variations in the idiom of the spelling include Bache, Beek, Baish, Boich, Baike, Boick. James, son of John and Elizabeth Baike, was christened at St. Matthew, Bethal Green, London, on July 24th 1749. One William Boik married Ann Bowers at St. Dunstan, Stepney, London, on September 30th 1786, and their son William was christened at Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, London, on May 17th 1797. The christening was recorded in London of Henry, son of Edward and Elizabeth Deboick, on July 7th 1872 at St. Leonard's, Shoreditch. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Reinee de Backe, which was dated 1212, "The Curia Regis Rolls of Staffordshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
28
Bache, Richard
Bache, Richard
 
 
29
Baggilegh Coat of Arms
Baggilegh Coat of Arms
This surname is derived from a geographical locality. 'of Baguley,' a township near Northenden, Cheshire The Manchester Directory has Bagoley and Baggoley; v. Bagley.

Henry de Bageleg, Salop and Staffordshire, Henry III-Edward I: Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum, temp.
 
 
30
Bailey Family Crest
Bailey Family Crest
This most interesting surname has three distinct origins. Firstly it can be an occupational name for a steward or official from the Old French "baillis" or "bailif", and middle English "bail(l)". The word survives in Scotland as "bailie", the title of a municipal magistrate, but in England has developed into "bailiff", an officer of the court. The second source is topographical, denoting one who lived by the outermost wall of a castle or fortified town from the middle English "bail(l)y" as can be seen in the case of the Old Bailey in London which was part of the early medieval walls. Thirdly, the surname can be locational, from "Bailey", in Lancashire which means "berry wood". One Roger le Baylly appeared in the Suffolk Pipe Rolls in 1230, while the Assize Court Rolls of Lancashire recorded a Ralph de Baylegh in 1246. Walter Bayley (1529-1593) educated at Winchester and fellow of Oxford, was Queen Elizabeth's physician. One William Butterworth Bayley (1782-1860) an Anglo-Indian, was educated at Eton and rose to the rank of Governor-general of India (1828-1830), he later became a director of the East India Company. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Roger le Baylly, which was dated 1230, in the Suffolk Pipe Rolls, during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "the Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling 
['More Links'] 
31
Baker Famiy Crest
Baker Famiy Crest
This ancient surname is of Olde English pre 8th century origins deriving from the word 'boeccure'. The surname is always occupational, but not always for a maker1 of bread. There are a number of possible origins and these include an official with special responsibilities for the baking ovens in a monastery or castle, as well as the keeper of the 'communal kitchen' in a town or village, since most of the humbler households had no cooking facilities other than a pot over a fire. The right to be in charge of this service and to exact money or loaves in return for its use, was in many parts of Britain, a hereditary feudal privilege. Less often the surname may have been acquired by someone noted for specifically baking fine bread or as an owner of a kiln for the baking of pottery or even bricks. The surname is first recorded in the late 12th Century, and early recordings include such examples as Robert Bakere, a witness in the Assize Court Rolls of Lancashire for the year 1246, and Walter le Backere in the rolls of the county of Hampshire for 1280 a.d. The female form of the name is 'Baxter'. There have been no less than forty two 'Baker' entries in the "Dictionary of National Biography", and during the latter half of the 19th century the name was arguably the most famous in the country. This was owing to the exploits of Sir Samuel Baker, who with Stanley and Livingstone, was the greatest African explorer, and his brother, Valentine Baker, the famous Cavalry leader, known world wide as 'Baker Pasha'. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William le Bakere, which was dated 1177, in the "Pipe Rolls of Norfolk", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
['More Links'] 
32
Bakewell Famly Crest
Bakewell Famly Crest
This is an English locational surname. It originates from the town of Bakewell in the county of Derbyshire, a place first recorded in the year 924 a.d. in the famous rolls known as the 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicles', perhaps the first 'newpaper' ever produced. The place name recording was as 'Badecan wiella', or the springs of Badeca. The latter was a tribal name, which may have originally been associated with (Queen) Boadicea, or it may have been the name of a local chief or landowner. The surname is however much later. Being locational it may have developed from an early land owning family, there was a family called the Bakewell's of Bakewell, although for some name holders at least it may be a 'from' name. This is to say that it was a surname given to the people after the left Bakewell and moved elsewhere. In the small communities of the later Middle Ages, the easiest way to identify a stranger was to call him, or sometimes her, by the name of the place from whence they came. Spelling being problematical, and local dialects very thick, often lead to the development of 'sounds like' spellings. Bakewell seems to have largely avoided this fate. The first known recording of the surname is that of Sir John de Bakwell in the famous surviving Parliamentary Rolls of King Edward 11nd, and dated about 1308. Sir John is given as being 'from Middlesex'. It is possible that he was the M P for Bakewell. Later nameholders of some stature include Robert Bakewell of Leicestershire (1725 - 1795), who was famous for his skills in improving the breeding of cattle, whilst another Robert Bakewell (1768 - 1843) was one of the first successful geologists. 
 
33
Baldington Family Crest
Baldington Family Crest
 
 
34
Baldwin Family Crest
Baldwin Family Crest
This ancient and distinguished name is of Anglo-Saxon and Old German origin; it is a hereditary surname developed from the male personal name Baldwin, which was popular in England before and after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The given name derives from the Olde English "Bealdwine", and the cognate Old German "Baldwine", composed of the elements "b(e)ald", bold, brave, and "wine", friend, and is recorded as "Baldewyne", circa 1066, and as "Balduin, Baldewin" in the Domesday Book of 1086. This name was a favourite among the Normans and in Flanders in the early Middle Ages, and it was probably the Flemish influence which was responsible for its popularity in England in the 12th and 13th Centuries. Baldwin was the given name of the Crusader who in 1100 became the first Christian king of Jerusalem, and of the Count of Flanders (1172 - 1205), who led the Fourth Crusade and became the first Latin Emperor of Constantinople (1204). Among the notable bearers of the surname is John Baldwin (died 1545), judge at the trials of Bishop Fisher, Sir Thomas More, and Anne Boleyn. One Thomas Baldwin was an early settler in the American Colonies, being listed in a "List of the Living in Virginia" compiled on February 16th 1623. A Coat of Arms granted to a family of the name depicts a gold griffin segreant on a red shield; the Crest is a blue lion rampant holding in the paws a gold cross crosslet fitchee. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Stephen Baldewin, which was dated 1200, in the "Pipe Rolls of Hampshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
35
Bamville Family Crest
Bamville Family Crest
 
 
36
Bangs Family Crest
Bangs Family Crest
by a riverbank, from the Old English 'bank(e)' (Old Norse 'bakke'). It can also be an Anglicized form of the Gaelic O Bruachain 'descendant of Bruachan', a byname for a stocky person. The name dates back to the late 13th Century, (see below). Recordings include one Matthew Banke (1327) 'The Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk', and Nicholaus del Bancke (1379), 'The Poll Tax Records of Yorkshire'. Variations in the idiom of the spelling include Banghe, Banger, Bankes, Banker, etc.. One John Banghe married Sarah Fetter on the 29th June 1607 at St. Andrew by the Wardrobe, London. Jonas Bangs married Mary Springham at St. James Dukes Place, London on January 20th 1697. One Ellen Maria, daughter of William and Hannah Bangs was christened at St. Thomas, Portsmouth on July 20th 1817. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter del Banck, which was dated 1297, in the Subsidy Rolls of Yorkshire, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as 'The Hammer of the Scots', 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
37
Banker Family Crest
Banker Family Crest
This name, with variant spellings Bankes and Banker, derives from the Northern Middle English "bank(e)", itself coming from the Old Danish "banke" meaning a ridge or hillside, and was originally given as a topographical name to someone who lived on the slope of a hillside or by a riverbank. The final "s" on the name preserves the Olde English genitive ending i.e., "of the bank". The surname was first recorded towards the end of the 13th Century (see below). One Matthew Banke appeared in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk, dated 1327, and on June 21st 1546, Alse, daughter of John Banks, was christened in St. Antholin's, Budge Row, London. A John Banks of Devon was entered in the Oxford University Register, dated 1597. The famous "dancing horse", Morocco, to which allusion is made by all the best authors of the day, was owned by the Scottish showman, Banks, who flourished 1588 - 1637. The works of Sir Edward Banks (1769 - 1835), who was knighted 1822, include Waterloo, Southwark, and London Bridges. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Walter del Banck, which was dated 1297, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
38
Barnes Family Crest
Barnes Family Crest
This interesting surname has three possible origins; firstly, it may be a topographical name or occupational name of Anglo-Saxon origin, for someone who lived or worked at a barn, deriving from the genitive case or plural of the Middle English "barn", a development of the Olde English pre 7th Century "bern", meaning barn, granary. The placename Barnes, on the Surrey bank of the Thames in West London, has the same origin, and some bearers may be members of families hailing from there. Secondly, it may be of Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse origin, and is the name borne by the son or servant of a berne, a term used in the early Middle Ages for a member of the upper classes. It derives from the Olde English "beorn", Old Norse "barn" meaning young warrior. Barne was occasionally used as a given name from an Olde English, Old Norse byname, and some examples of the surname may derive from this use. Thirdly, it may be of Irish origin, an Anglicized form of the Gaelic "O'Bearain", descendant of Bearan, a byname meaning spear. London Church Records list the marriage of John Barnes to Joane Bowes on September 16th 1539 at St. Mary Woolnoth. One Barnabie Barnes was an early emigrant to the New World, leaving London on the "Transport" in July 1635, bound for Virginia. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Philip de Bernes, which was dated 1250, in "Sir Christopher Hatton's Book of Seals of Surrey", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
39
Baron Grey de Wilton Coat of Arms
Baron Grey de Wilton Coat of Arms
 
 
40
Barrow Family Crest
Barrow Family Crest
This interesting surname, of Anglo-Saxon origin, is either a topographical name for someone who lived by a grove, or a locational name from any of the numerous places called Barrow in Cheshire, Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Shropshire, Suffolk and Somerset, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "bearo, bearu", meaning "grove" or "wood". It may also be a topographical name for someone who lived by a hill or burial mound, or a locational name from either of the places called Barrow near Leicestershire and Somerset, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "beorg", meaning "hill" or "barrow". Finally, it may be a locational name from Barrow in Furness, Cumberland, which derives from the Celtic "barro", meaning "promontory". The surname dates back to the late 12th Century (see below). Thomas Barrowe married Elizabeth Letter on May 25th 1554, at St. Mary Magdalene, Bermondsey, London, and Nicholas Barrow was christened at St. Margaret's, Westminster, also in London in October 1565. Anne Barrow, aged 21 yrs., a famine emigrant, sailed from Liverpool aboard the "W. Ward", bound for New York in May 1847. the Coat of arms most associated with the family is described thus: "Argent (silver) three torteaux, each charged with a fleur-de-lis or (gold), on a chief azure (blue) a buglehorn gold between two pheons of the field". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam de Barewe, which was dated 1192, in the "Pipe Rolls of Lincolnshire", during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
41
Bate Family Crest
Bate Family Crest
This interesting surname has three distinct possible origins, the first and most likely source being the medieval male given name "Bate", itself a petform of "Bartholomew", from the Aramaic patronymic "bar-Talmay" meaning "abounding in furrows" or "rich in lands". One Bate le Tackman was recorded in the 1273 Hundred Rolls of Lincolnshire. The name may also be occupational for a boatman, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "bat" (Northern Middle English "bat"), a boat. A Herbert Bat was noted in the 1182 Pipe Rolls of Shropshire. Finally, the Old Norse "bati", profit or gain, used in the transferred sense of "lush pasture" may have given rise to the surname. Early examples from this topographical source are Thomas del Bate (Northumberland, 1270), and William of Ye Bate (Yorkshire, 1297). John Bate, theologian, was prior of the Carmelites at York in 1415, and James Bate, who embarked from London on the ship "Elizabeth" in April 1635, bound for New England, was an early settler in the New World Colonies. The Coat of Arms most associated with the name is on a black shield a silver fesse engrailed between three gold dexter hands couped bendways, the Crest being a silver stag's head attired gold, erased red vulned through the neck with a gold arrow, feathered and headed silver. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Roger Bate, which was dated 1275, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Worcestershire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
42
Baudouin Famiy Crest
Baudouin Famiy Crest
This unusual surname, recorded in Church Registers of Jersey, the Channel Islands, from the mid 16th Century, is of medieval French origin, and is a patronymic form of Baudain, itself deriving from the Germanic male given name Baldo, a short form of any of the various compound names with the first element "bald", bold, for example Baldwin, "bold friend". This personal name was introduced into England by the Normans after the Conquest of 1066, and appears in its Latinized form "Baldewinus" in Feudal Documents of Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, dated circa 1085. One John Baudewin was recorded in Cambridgeshire in 1260. Baudains, and its variants Baudain, Baudins and Baud(o)uin, entered Britain as French Huguenot surnames, having been introduced by French Huguenot refugees fleeing religious persecution in their own country from the mid 16th Century onwards. On September 10th 1595, Jeanne Baudains and Helier le Fauvre were married at St. Martin's, Jersey, and on November 20th 1624, Johyn Baudains married Collette Romeril at St. John's, Jersey. The christening of Ester, daughter of Guillaume and Claire Bauduin, took place at the Threadneedle French Huguenot Church, London, on October 17th 1641. Several Coat of Arms have been granted to this illustrious family, the best known of which is an azure shield with a silver chevron between three gold roses, on a gold Crest three black martlets. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Baudains, which was dated 1563, marriage to Catherine Falle, on Jersey, the Channel Islands, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
43
Bayeux Family Crest
Bayeux Family Crest
 
 
44
Baynham Family Crest
Baynham Family Crest
 
 
45
Beattie Family Crest
Beattie Family Crest
This is a famous 'Border' surname, and is recorded in the spellings of Beatty, Beattie and Beaty. As a 'border' name it is found equally in the counties on either side of the boundary between Scotland and England. It has long been thought to have been a metronymic from the female personal name 'Beatrice', but in fact derives from 'Bate' or 'Batey', diminutives or pet forms of the name 'Bartholomew'. This name was brought back from the Holy Land by the 12th century Crusaders, and was one of a group of similar Hebrew personal names (Thomas, Abraham, and Isaac for instance), which were subsequently given to sons of the Crusaders as a commemoration of their fathers deeds in the failed attempts to secure Jerusalem for Christianity. These names became surnames in their own right from the 13th century. Bartholomew originates from the Aramaic patronymic 'bar-Talamy' and means 'one rich in land'. St. Bartholomew was popular in medieval times and was the patron saint of tanners, vintners and butlers. Early recordings include John Beatty, who is recorded as being a burgess of Aberdeen in 1473, and Robert Bettie was a burgess of Melrose in 1535. Sir William Beatty, the naval physician, attended Lord Nelson at Trafalgar in 1805, whilst Admiral Beatty was the victor of Jutland in 1915. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hew Batie, which was dated 1334, in the Scottish Rolls in the Tower of London, during the reign of King David 11 of Scotland, reigned 1329 - 1371. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling 
 
46
Beggarly Family Crest
Beggarly Family Crest
 
 
47
Belcher Family Crest
Belcher Family Crest
This most interesting surname is of Old French origin, and originated as a nickname for someone of a cheerful, pleasant demeanour or disposition, or for someone considered to be good looking, derived from the Old French elements "beu, bel", fair, lovely and "chere", face, countenance. Variants of the surname in the modern idiom include Belsher, Belshaw, Beuscher, Beaushaw, Bewshire, Bewshaw, Bewshea, Beushaw and Bowsher. The name is also found in the York cycle of Medieval Mystery Plays as a term of address, often derogatory: Herod addresses a messenger, "Bewcher! wele ye be", and when Annas orders a boy who has been bound to be brought in, the soldier announces, "Lo, here is the belschere broght that ye bad bring". The surname is one of only a few names which have retained their original spelling since the first recordings in the early 13th Century (see below). Richard Belecher is recorded in the Hundred Rolls of Gloucestershire in 1275, and Alexander Belcher is mentioned in the Feet of Fines of Essex in 1453. Jonathan Belcher (1682 - 1757) was governor of Massachusetts Colony (1729 - 1741), and was one of the founders of Princeton University. He was a wealthy merchant, having inherited a substantial fortune from his father, Andrew Belcher (died 1717). The family were established there by Andrew Belcher in 1654. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Belcher, which was dated 1219, witness in the "Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 
48
Belty Family Crest
Belty Family Crest
 
 
49
Benning Family Crest
Benning Family Crest
This famous surname, one of the earliest recorded in history, and recorded in over two hundred spellings from Benedicte, Benech and Bennet, to Banish, Beinosovitch and Vedyasov, derives from the Roman personal name "Benedictus", meaning blessed. The name owed its original popularity to St. Benedict (circa 480 - 550), who founded the Benedictine order of monks at Monte Cassino in Italy, and wrote the monastic rules that formed a model for all subsequent orders. The name was originally given only to members of the church, and particularly those in monastic orders. It became popular as a personal name for all members of society only after the famous Crusades to the Holy Land in the 12th century when it became the practice for returning soldiers or pilgrims to call their children after saints or prominent members of the early church. These personal names became surnames over the next two centuries, the first surnames being recorded in England, those on the continent generally being rather later. The French variants "Beneit or Benoit" being short forms of Benedictus, were the most usual spellings. Amongst the early examples of the surname recording are those of Robert Benyt of Yorkshire, England, in 1327, and Hainrich Benedicte of St Blazien, Germany, in the year 1330. Amongst the early settlers to the New England colonies of America was Edward Bennett of Wariscovack, Virgina. He was a major landowner, and is known to have employed at least twelve servants. The first recorded spelling of the family name anywhere in the world is believed to be that of William Benet, which was dated 1208, in the rolls of the city of Durham, England. This was during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 
 
50
Benson Family Crest
Benson Family Crest
This ancient surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and has two possible sources. Firstly, it is a patronymic from the medieval given name "Benne", which is in part a short form of Benedict, which in turn is from the Latin "Benedictus", meaning blessed, and in part a form of the Old Norse personal name "Bjorn", meaning "bearcub, warrior". The personal name owed its popularity to St. Benedict (circa 480 - 550), who founded the Benedictine order of monks at Monte Cassino and wrote a monastic rule that formed a model for all subsequent rules. Secondly, it is locational from Benson in Oxfordshire, so called from the Olde English pre 7th Century "Benesingtun", "settlement associated with Banesa", from a personal name of obscure origin, perhaps a derivative of "Bana", slayer, and the Olde English "tun", settlement.Over ten Coats of Arms were granted to Benson families; the oldest is silver on a black chevron three crossed formee gold, the Crest being the sun surrounded by a rainbow, each end issuing out of the clouds all proper. One Henery Benson was one of the earliest namebearers to settle in the American colonies; he is listed in a "Muster of the Inhabitants in Virginia" in 1624, having arrived on the "Francis Bonaventure" in August 1620. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Benneson, which was dated 1326, in the "Court Rolls of the Manor of Wakefield", Yorkshire, during the reign of King Edward 11, known as "Edward of Caernafon", 1307 - 1327. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling. 
 

    1 2 3 4 5 ... Next»