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Where did the English Merrifield family come from? What is the English Merrifield family crest and coat of arms? When did the Merrifield family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Merrifield family history?The proud Merrifield family originated in Cornwall, a rugged coastal region in southwestern England. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, as the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name. The manner in which hereditary surnames arose is interesting. Local surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. The Merrifield family originally lived in Cornwall, in the village of Merryfield.
Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Merrifield, Merrifild, Merefield, Merrefield, Merrifeild, Merefeild, Maryfield, Meryfield, Meryfeld, Merryfield, Merrivale, Merivale, Marrivale, Merevale, Meervale, Merrivall, Merryvall and many more.
First found in Cornwall and Devon, where this prominent family flourished. Walter Merifild was recorded in Devon in 1200 but it is believed the family had established itself earlier in St. Columb, Cornwall.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Merrifield research. Another 137 words(10 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1341, 1584, 1621, 1678, 1659 and 1678 are included under the topic Early Merrifield History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 57 words(4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Merrifield Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
In the immigration and passenger lists a number of early immigrants bearing the name Merrifield were found: Henry Merryfield, who settled in Dorchester, Massachusetts in 1658; as well as Jeremiah Merryfield, who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1773..
The Merrifield Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Merrifield 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 9 November 2012 at 14:54.
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