Show ContentsBenedict History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Benedict family name is linked to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from the personal name, Benedict, which was derived from the Latin name Benedictus, which meant blessed by God. [1] Another source notes the name could have been "from Benedictus, blessed, well spoken of, or a person wishing all good." [2]

Early Origins of the Benedict family

The surname Benedict was first found in Warwickshire, where they held a family seat from ancient times.

Benedict Biscop (628?-690), also called Biscop Baducing, was "founder of monasteries at Wearmouth and Jarrow, was an Angle of noble birth (Beda, v. 19, and Vita Abbat. i.), possibly of the royal race of the Lindisfari." [3]

Benedict of Gloucester (fl. 1120), was author of a life of St. Dubricius, Archbishop of Caerleon, was, according to his own description of himself, a monk of St. Peter's, Gloucester.

Benedict (d. 1193), was "Abbot of Peterborough, whose birthplace is unknown, was probably a monk of Christ Church, Canterury, of which monastery he became prior in 1175. In 1177 he was elected to the abbacy of Peterborough, and died in that office at Michaelmas, 1193." [3]

Early History of the Benedict family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Benedict research. Another 232 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1221, 1273, 1322, 1500, 1871, 1617, 1689 and 1638 are included under the topic Early Benedict History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Benedict Spelling Variations

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Benedict include Benedict, Benedicte, Benedici, Benedicti and many more.

Early Notables of the Benedict family (pre 1700)

Another 48 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Benedict Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Benedict Ranking

In the United States, the name Benedict is the 2,062nd most popular surname with an estimated 14,922 people with that name. [4]

United States Benedict migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Benedict were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Benedict Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Simon Benedict who arrived in Philadelphia in 1732
  • Dietrich Benedict, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1738 [5]
  • Peter Benedict, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1765 [5]
  • Thomas Benedict, who landed in Long Island in 1781 [5]
Benedict Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Jose Otemy Benedict, aged 45, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1822 [5]
  • Russel Benedict who arrived in New Orleans in 1823
  • J Benedict, who arrived in San Francisco, California in 1850 [5]
  • A S Benedict, who landed in San Francisco California in 1851 [5]
  • Collin Benedict, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1851 [5]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Benedict migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Benedict Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mrs. Elizabeth Benedict U.E. born in Danbury, Connecticut, USA who settled in New Brunswick c. 1783 [6]
  • Mr. Ezra Benedict U.E. who settled in Canada c. 1783 [6]
  • Mr. John Benedict U.E. who settled in Eastern District [Cornwall], Ontario c. 1783 [6]
  • Mr. Joseph Benedict U.E. who settled in Eastern District [Cornwall], Ontario c. 1783 [6]
Benedict Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Amze L Benedict, who arrived in Canada in 1830
  • Smith Benedict, who arrived in Canada in 1831

Contemporary Notables of the name Benedict (post 1700) +

  • Paul King Benedict (1912-1997), American anthropologist, mental health professional, and linguist who specialized in languages of East and Southeast Asia
  • Paul Benedict (1938-2008), American actor, best known for his roles as The Number Painter on the PBS children's show Sesame Street and as the English neighbor Harry Bentley on the CBS sitcom The Jeffersons.
  • Elizabeth Benedict (b. 1954), American author best known for her fiction, her personal essays, as the editor of three anthologies
  • Jay Benedict (1951-2020), American actor, best known for his roles in The Dark Knight Rises (2012), Double Team (1997) and The 100 Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (2013); he died of COVID-19
  • Dirk Benedict (b. 1945), American actor, best known for his role in The A-Team (2010) and The A-Team (1983-1987)
  • Charles Benedict (b. 1937), American Olympic gold medalist for shooting at the 1908 games
  • Major-General Jay Leland Benedict (1882-1953), American President of War Department Dependency Board (1942-1946) [7]
  • Bruce Benedict (b. 1955), American Major League Baseball player
  • Ruth Fulton Benedict (1887-1948), American anthropologist, best known for her study of Native American and Japanese cultures
  • Sir Julius Benedict (1804-1885), English (German-born) composer and conductor

The Benedict 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: De bon vouloir servir le roy
Motto Translation: To serve the king with goo will.

  1. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  3. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?".,
  5. 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)
  6. Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  7. Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, October 6) Jay Benedict. Retrieved from on Facebook