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

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

Revell is one of the many new names that came to England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Revell family lived in Warwickshire. Their name, however, is a reference to Reville, near Bernai, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. The name is derived from the Old French word "revel" which means "pride, rebellion, sport", from the word "reveler" which means "to rebel." Interestingly, there is a font-name named "Revel" which was common in Old French and Middle English records which may actually be from the Latin word "rebellus."

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Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Revel, Revell, Revill, Reville and others.

First found in Hertford and Northamptonshire where Robert Revel held two estates as early as 1130. A few years later Richard Revel was listed as holding two fees in barony in Somerset in 1165. Henry Revel was one of the nobles taken at Alnwick Castle, Northumberland in 1174.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Revell research. Another 191 words(14 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Revell History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Revell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Revell family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 174 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Revell or a variant listed above were:

Revell Settlers in the United States in the 17th Century


  • John Revell settled in Salem Massachusetts in 1630
  • John Revell, who landed in Maryland in 1634
  • Rebecca Revell, who arrived in Maryland in 1634
  • James Revell settled in Virginia in 1635
  • James Revell, aged 20, arrived in Virginia in 1635


Revell Settlers in the United States in the 18th Century


  • John Revell settled in Rappahannock in Virginia in 1726

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  • Donald Revell (b. 1954), American poet, essayist, translator and professor
  • Grey Revell (b. 1973), American music producer and songwriter
  • Alexander David "Alex" Revell (b. 1983), English football striker
  • Mr. William Revell (d. 1912), aged 31, English Saloon Steward from Southampton, Hampshire who worked aboard the RMS Titanic and died in the sinking
  • Graeme Revell (b. 1955), New Zealand classically trained pianist, French horn player, and composer of film music
  • Nick Revell, British stand-up comedian and writer for radio and television
  • Guy Revell (1941-1981), Canadian figure skater
  • Andy "Rev" Revell (b. 1958), British businessman, scientist and musician
  • Viljo Revell (1910-1964), Finnish architect
  • Ian Murray Revell (b. 1948), former New Zealand politician

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  1. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  2. Mills, A.D. Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4).
  3. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  4. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  5. Bullock, L.G. Historical Map of England and Wales. Edinburgh: Bartholomew and Son, 1971. Print.
  6. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  7. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  8. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  9. 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.
  10. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Revell Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Revell 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 19 February 2014 at 14:53.

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