Origins Available: English
Early Origins of the Belville family
The surname Belville was first found in Cornwall
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy
, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron
, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England
to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant
of the lands of Gwarnock, held by the Sir de Beville from the Earl of Moron, who was recorded in the Domesday Book
census of 1086. They were descended from Le Sire de Beville from Beuville near Caen in Normandy
. The Sire married a Gwarnack heiress. In those days the name became widely influential and populated throughout southern England
at Wykes priory, Hertfordshire
was known in eleven different counties undertook a variety of spellings.
Early History of the Belville family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Belville research.Another 223 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1165, 1301, 1381, 1510, and 1600 are included under the topic Early Belville History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Belville Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred
years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Belville are characterized by many spelling variations
. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Belville include Bevill, Beville, Bevile, Bevell, Bevel, Bevil, Beavil, Beavill, Beaville, Biville, Buiville, Buivill, Boiville, Boisville, Boville, Boyville, Belville, Bovile and many more.
Early Notables of the Belville family (pre 1700)
Another 25 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Belville Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Belville family to the New World and Oceana
Faced with the chaos present in England
at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia
in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England
went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Belville, or a variant listed above: Edward Bevill, Robert Bevill, Noah Bevill, and James Bevill who all arrived in South Carolina between the years 1670 and 1684; John Bevill, a servant sent to Virginia in 1676.
Contemporary Notables of the name Belville (post 1700)
- Ernest Belville, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives from Wexford District, 1942