Show ContentsBlench History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The proud Norman name of Blench was developed in England soon after Norman Conquest of England in 1066. It was name for a person who was fair haired or pale or white of complexion. The name stems from the Old French word blanc, which means white.

The Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae includes entries for William Blanc and Robert and John Blanche in Normandy, 1180-1195, confirming the Norman origin of the family. [1]

Early Origins of the Blench family

The surname Blench was first found in Northamptonshire at Peterborough Castle where Blanche of England, LG (1392-1409), also known as Blanche of Lancaster, was an English princess of the House of Lancaster. She was the sixth of the seven children born during the marriage of Prince Henry of Lancaster and his wife. Her brother, Henry of Monmouth would later become King Henry V of England.

Early English rolls provide us a glimpse of the spelling variations used through Medieval times. Today we typically need to look beyond the spellings of these entries and concentrate on a phonetic appreciation of the names.

The Feet of Fines for Lincolnshire list Alexander Blanche in 1208 and the same rolls but for Oxfordshire, list Matilda Blaunche in 1270. Thomas Blanch was found in Colchester in 1312 and later Matilda Blanache was recorded in the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379. [2]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included: John Blannche, Huntingdonshire; Elianora Blanche, Cambridgeshire; and Henry Blanche, Oxfordshire. [3]

The Placita de Quo Warranto, temp. Edward I-III includes an entry for Clement Blaunche, Warwickshire, 20 Edward I (during the twentieth year of King Edward I's reign) and the Close Rolls have entry for John Blanche, 2 Edward IV. [3]

Early History of the Blench family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Blench research. Another 122 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1503, 1716, 1649, 1725, 1710, 1713 and 1592 are included under the topic Early Blench History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Blench 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 Blench have been found, including Blanch, Blanche, Blanck, Blank, Blance, Blanx and others.

Early Notables of the Blench family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas and Matthew Blanche of the Shetlands; Thomas Blanck, Lord Mayor of London. John Blanch (c. 1649-1725), of Wotton Court, near Gloucester and Eastington, Gloucestershire, was an English politician, Member (MP) of the Parliament of Great Britain for Gloucester from 1710...
Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Blench Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Blench migration to the United States +

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 Blench were among those contributors:

Blench Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Anna Blench, who landed in New York in 1850 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Blench (post 1700) +

  • Roger Blench (b. 1953), British linguist, ethnomusicologist and development anthropologist

  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. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  4. 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) on Facebook