Bewlays History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Bewlays was brought to England in the wave of migration that followed the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Bewlays family lived in Worcestershire. However, the surname of the Bewlays family evolved from the name of their former residence, Beaulieu, a place in Calvados, Normandy. [1] [2]

Early Origins of the Bewlays family

The surname Bewlays was first found in Worcestershire, at Bewdley, a town and civil parish in the Wyre Forest District. The village dates back to about 1275 when it was listed as Beuleu and literally meant "beautiful place" having derived from the Old French beau + lieu. [3]

One of the first records of one of the surname's early variants was Simon de Bello Loco of Normandy who was listed there in 1180 and years later Alexander de Bello Loco paid a fine in Bedfordshire in 1255. [1]

Bewley Common is a small village in Wiltshire. Bewley Castle is in Bolton, Cumbria and is "said to have been built by Bishop Hugh who died in 1223. The castle was originally called 'Bellus Locus.' It features in the legend of the Robbers of Bewley by Reagill's poet Anthony Whitehead (A border reiver dressed as a woman, out to rob Bewley castle in the time of Sir Richard Musgrave, gets hot fat poured down his throat while he sleeps by the house keeper Margaret Dawe)."

Early rolls listed William de Beulu in Gloucestershire in 1273 and Philip de Beauleu in 1329. [4]

Early History of the Bewlays family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Bewlays research. Another 74 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1214, 1813, 1834, 1834, 1858, 1870, 1902, 1840, 1835 and 1986 are included under the topic Early Bewlays History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Bewlays Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Bewlays have been found, including Bewley, Bewlay, Bowley, Bowlay, Bewlie and others.

Early Notables of the Bewlays family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Robert Kanzow Bowley, the son of a boot-maker at Charing Cross, was born May 13, 1813. He was bred to his father's business, and succeeded him in it. His first knowledge of music was acquired by association with the choristers of Westminster Abbey. Ardent and enthusiastic, he pursued his studies vigorously. Whilst still a youth he joined a small society called 'The Benevolent Society of Musical Amateurs,' of which he afterwards became conductor. In 1834 he was one of the committee who promoted and carried out...
Another 94 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Bewlays Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Bewlays family to Ireland

Some of the Bewlays family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 96 words (7 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 Bewlays family

For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Bewlays were among those contributors: Mary Bewley who settled in New England in 1752; Grace Bewlie settled in New England in 1635; Ambrose Bewly settled in Virginia in 1642.



The Bewlays 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: Cautus metuit foveam lupus
Motto Translation: The cautious wolf fears the snare.


  1. ^ 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)
  2. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  4. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)


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