Show ContentsBreeks History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient name Breeks is a Norman name that would have been developed in England after the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. This name was a name given to a cheerful or lively person. The name stems from the Old English root, bragge, which means lively, gay, or active. A Norman derivation is slightly different, and suggests that the word stems from the root braggi, which means a hero, or man of great accomplishment. 1

Early Origins of the Breeks family

The surname Breeks was first found in Somerset where Walter Bragge was listed in the Assize Rolls of 1243. A few years later in Cambridgeshire, Henry Brag was listed in the Assize Rolls of 1260 2 and later in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273. 3

The Register of the University of Oxford list Edward Bragge in 1573 and Edmund Bragge in 1601. 3

Early History of the Breeks family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Breeks research. Another 177 words (13 lines of text) covering the year 1100 is included under the topic Early Breeks History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Breeks Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Breeks were recorded, including Bragg, Brag, Braggs, Bragge and others.

Early Notables of the Breeks family

More information is included under the topic Early Breeks Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Breeks family to Ireland

Some of the Breeks family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 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 Breeks family

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Breeks arrived in North America very early: John Bragg who settled in Barbados in 1654; Mary Bragge settled in Virginia in 1774; William Bragg settled in Barbados in 1680 with his wife, three children, and servants.

Contemporary Notables of the name Breeks (post 1700) +

  • James Wilkinson Breeks (1830-1872), Indian civil servant and author of 'An Account of the Primitive Tribes and Monuments in the Nilagiris,' born at Warcop, Westmorland, on 5 March 1830 4

The Breeks 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: Fidelis et constans
Motto Translation: Faithful and steadfast.

  1. Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  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. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 5 Feb. 2019 on Facebook