Bellewes History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Bellewes is a name that was carried to England in the great wave of migration from Normandy following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Bellewes family lived in Yorkshire. The name, however, refers to the region of Belleau or Bella Aqua in France, both of which translate as good water or clear water. 
The name also stretched north into Scotland where "Gilbert de Beleawe witnessed gift of the 'eschalingas i Lambremore' to the church of Kelso by William de Vyerpunt c. 1160. 
Early Origins of the Bellewes family
The surname Bellewes was first found in Yorkshire, where the name is "probably of Norman origin, meaning bel-eau, in Latin, Bella-aqua, the fair water; the designation of some locality. John be Bellew was a Baron of Parliament temp. Edward I." 
The family claim that the founder of the Bellews was a marshal in the army of the Conqueror. Some of the eighteen knights who were in direct succession settled in Ireland at Bellewstown, in the county of Meath and in Louth in the 13th century. 
Another source claims the name "is an old, though now a rare, Devonshire name."  This source also notes that the family had been lords of the manor of Stockleigh-English for more than 150 years.
Early History of the Bellewes family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bellewes research. Another 77 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1720, 1805, 1585, 1585, 1575, 1585, 1848, 1798 and 1866 are included under the topic Early Bellewes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Bellewes Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Bellewes include Bellew, Belew, Below, Bella and others.
Early Notables of the Bellewes family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Richard Bellew ( fl. 1585), English legal reporter, "published in 1585 an abridgment of the reports of Statham Fitzherbert and Brooke, described by...
Another 30 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bellewes Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Bellewes family to Ireland
Some of the Bellewes family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 87 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Bellewes family
In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Bellewess to arrive on North American shores: Patrick Bellew who settled in Philadelphia, Pa. followed by Charles, James, John, Michael and Patrick all between 1844 and 1860; J.H. Bellew settled in San Francisco Cal. in 1852.
Related Stories +
The Bellewes 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: Tout d'en haut
Motto Translation: All from above.
- ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
- ^ 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)
- ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
- ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.