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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2014

Origins Available: English, French

Where did the English Temple family come from? What is the English Temple family crest and coat of arms? When did the Temple family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Temple family history?

The Anglo-Saxon name Temple comes from the family having resided in an area that was close to the temple. Temple is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. During the Middle Ages, as society became more complex, individuals needed a way to be distinguishable from others. Toponymic surnames were developed as a result of this need. Various features in the landscape or area were used to distinguish people from one another. In this case the original bearers of the surname Temple were named due to their close proximity to the temple or the place of worship.


Temple has been spelled many different ways, including Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Temple, Tempell, Temples and others.

First found in Cheshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, and said to be descended from Leofric, the Saxon Earl of Chester, who died in 1057 before the Conquest. He left issue, Algar, Earl of Mercia and East Anglia, and the son Henry who obtained land from Robert, Earl of Leicester in the form of the Manor of Temple in Leicestershire. One line of this name claim Burton Dassett, Warwickshire as their ancestral home.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Temple research. Another 199 words(14 lines of text) covering the years 1567, 1637, 1611, 1599, 1663, 1645, 1653, 1606, 1680, 1613, 1674, 1657, 1670, 1634, 1697, 1628, 1699, 1669, 1749, 1718, 1555, 1627, 1600, 1677, 1641, 1677, 1628 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Temple History in all our PDF Extended History products.


Another 267 words(19 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Temple Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


Some of the Temple family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 195 words(14 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.


In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Temples to arrive on North American shores:

Temple Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century

  • Edward Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1622
  • Edward Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1623
  • Abraham Temple, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1636
  • Mary Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1643
  • Richard Temple, who arrived in Charlestown, Massachusetts in 1647

Temple Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century

  • Tho Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1704
  • Saml Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1705
  • Mathew Temple, who landed in Virginia in 1705
  • Jeremia Temple, who landed in Virginia in 1705
  • William Temple, who landed in New England in 1729

Temple Settlers in the United States in the 19th Century

  • Magdalena Temple, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1806
  • James Temple, who settled in Virginia in New York in 1823
  • Hugh Temple, aged 16, landed in New York in 1849
  • Don Juan Temple, who arrived in California in 1851
  • John Temple, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1855

Temple Settlers in the United States in the 20th Century

  • Oscar F Temple, who arrived in Mississippi in 1903


  • Henry Wilson Temple (1864-1955), American politician, member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania
  • Shirley Jane Temple Black (1928-2014), born Shirley Jane Temple, American child actress, and a United States Ambassador and diplomat, ranked 18th on the American Film Institute's list of the greatest female American screen legends of all time
  • Frederick Temple (1821-1902), English (Santa Maura born), Anglican prelate, and Archbishop of Canterbury
  • William Temple (1881-1944), English clergyman, Archbishop of Canterbury, known as a church and civic leader
  • Henry John Temple (1784-1865), English statesman and politician, 3d Viscount Palmerston, twice Prime Minister of the U.K
  • George Frederick James Temple (1901-1992), English mathematician
  • Julien Temple (b. 1953), English director, writer, cinematographer, and actor
  • Sir Richard Temple (1826-1902), British politician, and administrator in British India, created 1st Baronet Temple of The Nash in 1876


  • The Rise of the Temples by Albert R. Temple.
  • The Temple Family of Wake County, North Carolina, and Related Families by Eunice Temple Kirkpatrick.
  • William Temple of Prince George County, Virginia and His Descendants by Lucy Temple,

The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Templa quam dilecta
Motto Translation: Temples, how beloved.


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  1. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
  2. Cook, Chris. English Historical Facts 1603-1688. London: MacMillan, 1980. Print.
  3. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  4. Bede, The Venerable. Historia Ecclesiatica Gentis Anglorum (The Ecclesiastical History Of the English People). Available through Internet Medieval Sourcebook the Fordham University Centre for Medieval Studies. Print.
  5. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  6. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  7. Le Patourel, John. The Norman Empire. New York: Oxford University Press, 1976. Print. (ISBN 0-19-822525-3).
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  9. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
  10. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  11. ...

The Temple Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Temple Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 11 February 2014 at 08:32.

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