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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2018


The Speares surname comes from the Old English word "spere," meaning "spear." It may have originally been a nickname for a tall skinny person, or perhaps for a hunter skilled at using the spear. Alternatively, the could have been used for a "watchman or lookout man." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York, Harper & Row, 1956. Print
[2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
[3]CITATION[CLOSE]
Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)

Another source notes: "Spere, to ask, to inquire; a word used formerly in Scotland and the north of Ireland." [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print


Speares Early Origins



The surname Speares was first found in Renfrewshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Rinn Frił), a historic county of Scotland, today encompassing the Council Areas of Renfrew, East Renfrewshire, and Iverclyde, in the Strathclyde region of southwestern Scotland.

Further to the south in Yorkshire, the first record of the family was found in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 when Robertas Spyer was listed there at that time. [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

By the 16th century, Richard Spyre was listed as attending Oxford University in 1515; and George Speris was listed in Stirling, Scotland in 1548.


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Speares Spelling Variations


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Speares Spelling Variations



Spelling variations of this family name include: Speir, Spier, Spears, Speirs, Spiers, Speer, Speers, Spere, Speres, Spire, Spires, Speyer, Speier, Speery and many more.

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Speares Early History


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Speares Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Speares research. Another 144 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1417, 1475, 1664, 1626 and are included under the topic Early Speares History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Speares Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Speares Early Notables (pre 1700)



More information is included under the topic Early Speares Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Speares In Ireland


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Speares In Ireland



Some of the Speares family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 212 words (15 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Stephen Spear who settled in Virginia in 1685; Robert Speare settled in Virginia in 1653; James Spears settled in New England in 1761; Alexander Speir settled in Wilmington N.C. in 1774.

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Speares Family Crest Products


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Speares Family Crest Products




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See Also


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