Air History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The earliest origins of the family name Air date back to the Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It was a name given to a person who was well-known as the heir to a title, fortune, or estate. The name is thought to be derived from the Old French eir, which is itself derived from the Latin heres, meaning "heir."
Early Origins of the Air family
The surname Air was first found in Derbyshire, where the ancestral home of the main branch of the Air family is thought to be located. Early written records of the name Air have been found in many counties, notably Derbyshire, Wiltshire, and Shropshire.
In the early legends of the Eyre family, it was recounted that a Knight named Eyre who fought with Richard the Lionheart at the Battle of Ascalon during the Crusades lost a leg while defending his King, which is why the family still bears a booted leg in its crest.
Another source, mentions that the traditional origin of the name was in circumstance of a Norman knight having at the Battle of Hastings succoured (helped) duke William of Normandy and given him air when he was in danger of suffocation. 
"The Eyres appear as witnesses to charters in the Peak of Derbyshire in the remotest period to which private charters ascend. The first of the name known is William le Eyre, of Hope, in the reign of Henry III." 
The chapel in Great Longstone, Derbyshire contains monuments to the "family of Eyre, earls of Newburgh." 
Early History of the Air family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Air research. Another 112 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1216, 1582, 1657, 1635, 1628, 1678, 1659, 1678, 1635, 1695, 1660, 1661, 1689, 1638, 1698, 1666, 1735, 1680, 1700, 1689, 1693, 1638, 1712, 1665, 1715, 1698, 1701, 1705, 1715, 1670, 1715, 1729, 1585, 1661, 1662 and 1768 are included under the topic Early Air History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Air Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Air include Eyre, Eyer, Eyers, Eayres, Eyres, Ayer, Ayers,Heyer, Ayr, Air, Aires, Hyer, Hayer, Hoyer and many more.
Early Notables of the Air family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include John Ayer (1582-1657), an English settler to Massachusetts sailing aboard the ship James in 1635, settling in Ipswich, Haverhill, and Salisbury, born in Salisbury, Wiltshire.
Henry Eyre (1628-1678), was an English lawyer and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1659 and 1678; Sir Giles Eyre (c. 1635-1695), was an English politician and judge, Member of Parliament for Downton (1660-1661), and Salisbury in 1689.
Sir Samuel Eyre (1638-1698), was an English judge; and his son, Sir Robert Eyre (1666-1735), an English lawyer, Solicitor-General and Chief Justice of the Common Pleas.
John Ayres ( fl. 1680-1700)...
Another 162 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Air Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Air family to Ireland
Some of the Air family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 119 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Air migration to the United States +
A great wave of immigration to the New World was the result of the enormous political and religious disarray that struck England at that time. Families left for the New World in extremely large numbers. The long journey was the end of many immigrants and many more arrived sick and starving. Still, those who made it were rewarded with an opportunity far greater than they had known at home in England. These emigrant families went on to make significant contributions to these emerging colonies in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers carried this name or one of its variants:
Air Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Air migration to Australia +
Emigration to Australia
followed the First Fleets
of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:
Air Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- James Air, aged 41, a shepherd, who arrived in South Australia in 1854 aboard the ship "John Bunyan" 
Contemporary Notables of the name Air (post 1700) +
- Air Commodore Robert Marsland (1880-1920), British Royal Navy officer
- Air Vice Marshal Ellis Charles Wackett (1901-1984), senior commander in the Royal Australian Air Force
- Air Marshal Raymond George "Ray" Funnell (b. 1935), retired senior officer of the Royal Australian Air Force
Related Stories +
The Air Motto +
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 sola invicta
Motto Translation: Virtue alone is invincible.
- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
- ^ South Australian Register Wednesday 24th May 1854. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) John Bunyan 1854. Retrieved http://www.theshipslist.com/ships/australia/johnbunyan1854.shtml