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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016


The name Brighton reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Brighton family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Brighton family lived at Breighton in the East Riding of Yorkshire where they were established since the early Middle Ages. Some have mistakenly thought the name came from Brighton in Sussex, but until the late 1800s that place was called Brighthelmestone.

Brighton Early Origins



The surname Brighton was first found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Breighton in the East Riding. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, the sizeable village of Breighton was held Ralph de Mortimer, a battle of Hastings warrior, who was granted many 123 Lordships by Duke William of Normandy, his chief seat being that of Wigmore Castle in Herefordshire. Which of his under-tenants or relatives held Breighton is unknown, but we feel certain that this is the ancient ancestor of the Brightons. He was succeeded by Roger, Hugh, William and others.

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Brighton Spelling Variations


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Brighton Spelling Variations



Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Brighton, Bryton, Bryghton, Brighten, Bryten, Bryghten and many more.

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Brighton Early History


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Brighton Early History



This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brighton research. Another 245 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1328 and 1341 are included under the topic Early Brighton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Brighton Early Notables (pre 1700)


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Brighton Early Notables (pre 1700)



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

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The Great Migration


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The Great Migration



Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Brighton name or one of its variants:

Brighton Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Henry Brighton, a child immigrant to Virginia in 1626
  • Thomas Brighton, who arrived in New England in 1635
  • Tho Brighton, aged 31, landed in America in 1635

Brighton Settlers in United States in the 18th Century

  • Daniel Brighton, who came to Virginia in 1743

Brighton Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • William H Brighton, aged 19, arrived in New York in 1854
  • W H Brighton, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1855

Brighton Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century

  • Robert Brighton, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749
  • Robert Brighton, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Sarah Brighton, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
  • Robert Brighton arrived in Nova Scotia with his wife Sarah in 1750

Brighton Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • Charlotte Brighton arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Bolton" in 1848
  • John Brighton arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Bolton" in 1848

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Contemporary Notables of the name Brighton (post 1700)


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Contemporary Notables of the name Brighton (post 1700)



  • Leland Brighton, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Delegate to Michigan State Constitutional Convention from Lenawee County, 1961
  • Howard Brighton, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives 45th District, 1966
  • Arthur Brighton, American Democrat politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Illinois, 1948

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Brighton Historic Events


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Brighton Historic Events




HMS Repulse

  • Mr.  Leonard Edgar Brighton, British Marine, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse and survived the sinking

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Brighton Family Crest Products


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Brighton Family Crest Products




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See Also


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See Also




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Citations


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Citations



  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Hitching, F.K and S. Hitching. References to English Surnames in 1601-1602. Walton On Thames: 1910. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0181-3).
  2. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
  3. Robb H. Amanda and Andrew Chesler. Encyclopedia of American Family Names. New York: Haper Collins, 1995. Print. (ISBN 0-06-270075-8).
  4. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  5. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  6. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  7. Papworth, J.W and A.W Morant. Ordinary of British Armorials. London: T.Richards, 1874. Print.
  8. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  9. Best, Hugh. Debrett's Texas Peerage. New York: Coward-McCann, 1983. Print. (ISBN 069811244X).
  10. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  11. ...

The Brighton Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Brighton Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 11 December 2015 at 14:14.

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