Balless History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The surname Balless is derived from the Old French word baillis, which is the nominative form of the word bailliff. The name was originally occupational for a bailiff, a deputy of a king or lord, whose duties included collecting of rents and administering justice. In Wales, this name was for an agent of the English lords of the marches.
"The office, being of importance, was usually held by Normans of rank." 
Early Origins of the Balless family
The surname Balless was first found in Glamorganshire (Welsh: Sir Forgannwg), a region of South Wales, anciently part of the Welsh kingdom of Glywysing, where they held a family seat from very ancient times, long before the Norman Conquest in 1066.
Early History of the Balless family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Balless research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1300, 1500, 1860 and 1924 are included under the topic Early Balless History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Balless Spelling Variations
Although there are not an extremely large number Welsh surnames, there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations of those surnames. This variety of spellings began almost immediately after the acceptance of surnames within Welsh society. As time progressed, these old Brythonic names were eventually were recorded in English. This process was problematic in that many of the highly inflected sounds of the native language of Wales could not be properly captured in English. Some families, however, did decide to modify their own names to indicate a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even a patriotic affiliation. The name Balless has seen various spelling variations: Bayliss, Bailiss, Baliss, Balis, Balies, Bayles, Bayliff, Bayliffe, Bailiff, Bailiffe and many more.
Early Notables of the Balless family (pre 1700)
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Balless Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Balless family to Ireland
Some of the Balless family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Balless family
In the 1800s and 1900s, many Welsh families left for North America, in search of land, work, and freedom. Those who made the trip successfully helped contribute to the growth of industry, commerce, and the cultural heritage of both Canada and the United States. In the immigration and passenger lists were a number of people bearing the name Balless William Bayliss who settled in Barbados in 1663; William Bayliss settled in Pennsylvania in 1773; and Joseph Baylis settled in New England in 1763.
- The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)