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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The name Greene has a long Anglo-Saxon heritage. The name comes from when a family lived in the village greene which was the center or main square of each region. It is derived from the Old English "grene," meaning "green," and was most likely first borne by a family who lived in the village greene, the center or main square of a region. Alternatively, it may have been bestowed as a nickname on someone who was particularly fond of dressing in green.
The surname Greene was first found in Kent, where the earliest record of the name was Geoffrey Greene who was recorded in a Poll Tax in 1188. As every early English village had a green, the surname Greene emerged independently in many different places during the Middle Ages, thus creating several early branches of the Greene family. Richard de la Grene was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Norfolk in 1200 and Geoffrey Attegrene was listed in the Assize Rolls of Lancashire in 1206. The prefix "atte" was a popular namesake which meant in this case "at the green."
Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Greene have been found, including Greene, Green, Grene, Grean and others.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greene research. Another 167 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1221, 1461, 1506, 1462, 1558, 1592, 1636, 1685, 1620, 1708, 1690, 1700, 1614, 1702, 1630, 1679, 1705 and are included under the topic Early Greene History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 233 words (17 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Greene Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the Greene family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 197 words (14 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.
Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Greene, or a variant listed above:
Greene Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Greene Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Greene Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Greene Settlers in Canada in the 17th Century
Greene Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
Greene Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
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: Virtus semper viridis
Motto Translation: Virtue is always flourishing.
The Greene Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Greene 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 18 February 2016 at 15:52.