Brettener History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought much change to the island nation, including many immigrants with new names. Among these immigrants were the ancestors of the Brettener family, who lived in Devon. The name is a reference to the French province of Brettagne or Brittany, from where this family arrived in 1066. 
Early Origins of the Brettener family
The surname Brettener was first found in Devon, where they held a family seat from the 11th century. Originating in Brittany,  the name was introduced to England in 1066 with Auvrai le Breton being present at the Norman Conquest in 1066 under the banner of Alain le Roux. William the Conqueror rewarded Auvrai for his service with lordships in Devon. Later some of the family were found at Great Witchingham in Norfolk. "The church is a handsome structure, chiefly in the later English style, with a lofty square embattled tower [holds the remains of] John Britton, Bishop of Hereford, who died in 1275." 
Early History of the Brettener family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brettener research. Another 212 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1164, 1166, 1166, 1248, 1279, 1379, 1599, 1654, 1771, 1806, 1294, 1297, 1644, 1714, 1651, 1678 and are included under the topic Early Brettener History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Brettener 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 Brettener were recorded, including Brittoner, Brettoner, Brittany, Briton, Breton, Bretun, Bruton, Bretener, Bretoner, Brettner, Brittain and many more.
Early Notables of the Brettener family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Ranulph le Breton, canon of St. Pauls in the 13th century; William Briton, a prominent theologian of the 14th century; a bearer of Britain, who was Lord Mayor of London from 1294-1297; and Thomas Britton (1644-1714), an English charcoal merchant best known as a concert promoter from Rushden, Northamptonshire. He was known as the celebrated 'musical small-coal man.'  He "was born at or near Higham Ferrers, Northamptonshire, about the year 1651. He was apprenticed in London to a coal-dealer, and afterwards commenced business in Aylesbury Street, Clerkenwell, as a dealer in 'small-coal'...
Another 150 words (11 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Brettener Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Brettener family to Ireland
Some of the Brettener family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 50 words (4 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 Brettener 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 Brettener arrived in North America very early: Robart Brittin, who came to Virginia in 1618; John Brittaine, who came to Virginia in 1638; William Brittin, who was on record in Virginia in 1675; Lionel Brittain, his wife Elizabeth and their daughter Elizabeth, who all came to New Jersey in 1680.
Related Stories +
- ^ 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)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print