Brook History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Brook is one of the many new names that came to England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Brook family lived in Essex. The name, however, derives from the family's former residence in Broc, in the area of Anjou, France. [1]

Early Origins of the Brook family

The surname Brook was first found in Essex. Medieval forms of the name are Ate-Broc, Atte-Broc, Attenbroke and was more often than not pluralized to Brooks and Brookes in modern times. [2]

Originally from the Norman "Broc," meaning "a stream" or "at the brook," one of the first references was of Robert le Broc and Ranyllph le Broc, two knights having estates in Essex in the year 1119. A few years later, Eustace delbroc was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Northumberland in 1130 and Rand de Broc was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Hampshire in 1157. [3]

The Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum, temp. Henry III- Edward I, listed Edelina del Brok. Henry III- Edward I [4]

Early in the 13th century, William de la Broke was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls of Surrey in 1208 and Emma de Brokes was listed in the same source but in Suffolk in 1220. [3] The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Alice de la Broke and Laurence del Broc. [5] In Somerset, William atte Brouke was listed there, 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) [6]

Early History of the Brook family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Brook research. Another 204 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1214, 1592, 1660, 1512, 1560, 1532, 1560, 1569, 1563, 1545, 1660, 1614, 1643, 1664, 1602, 1655, 1652, 1608, 1680, 1685, 1646, 1648, 1632, 1676, 1601, 1683, 1685 and are included under the topic Early Brook History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Brook Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Brook, Brooke, Brookes, Brooks, Brecks, Broocks and others.

Early Notables of the Brook family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Richard Brooke (died 1569), Sheriff of Cheshire in 1563, he bought the manor of Norton, Cheshire from Henry VIII in 1545 following the dissolution of the monasteries; John Brooke, (died 1660) 1st Baron Cobham, an English politician who sat in the House of Commons at various times between 1614 and 1643; Sir Henry Brooke, 1st Baronet (died 1664), an English soldier and politician; Robert Brooke, Sr...
Another 74 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Brook Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Brook World Ranking

In the United States, the name Brook is the 5,133rd most popular surname with an estimated 4,974 people with that name. [7] However, in Australia, the name Brook is ranked the 790th most popular surname with an estimated 4,945 people with that name. [8] And in New Zealand, the name Brook is the 930th popular surname with an estimated 801 people with that name. [9] The United Kingdom ranks Brook as 675th with 9,774 people. [10]

Ireland Migration of the Brook family to Ireland

Some of the Brook family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 124 words (9 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Brook migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Brook or a variant listed above were:

Brook Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Rob Brook, who arrived in New England in 1634 [11]
  • Elys Brook, who landed in New England in 1634 [11]
  • Richard Brook, who arrived in Maryland in 1637 [11]
  • Elizabeth Brook, who landed in Maryland in 1637 [11]
  • Ffrances Brook, who arrived in Maryland in 1641 [11]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Brook Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Robert Brook, who arrived in Virginia in 1704 [11]
  • Margaret Brook, who landed in Virginia in 1706 [11]
  • Zacharias Brook, who arrived in Virginia in 1719 [11]
  • David Brook, aged 22, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1737 [11]
  • Hanna Brook, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1796 [11]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Brook Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Thomas Brook, aged 36, who arrived in New York, NY in 1804 [11]
  • Peter Brook, aged 26, who landed in New York in 1812 [11]
  • Mr. William Brook, (b. 1825), aged 7, Cornish settler departing from Plymouth aboard the ship “Andromeda” arriving in the United States on 10th May 1832 [12]
  • Valentine Brook, who arrived in Missouri in 1840 [11]
Brook Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Joseph Brook, who landed in Alabama in 1917 [11]
  • Louis Brook, who arrived in Alabama in 1922 [11]
  • Morris Brook, who arrived in Alabama in 1922 [11]

Canada Brook migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Brook Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Jesse Brook U.E. who settled in Carleton [Saint John City], New Brunswick c. 1783 [13]
Brook Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Catherine Brook, aged 24, who landed in Quebec in 1834
  • Hugh Brook, aged 28, who landed in Quebec in 1834
  • Mr. William Brook, (b. 1833), aged 22, English labourer, from Dawlish, Devon, England, UK departing from Falmouth destined for Quebec, Canada aboard the ship "Barque John" on 3rd May 1855 which sank after striking the reef, he survived the sinking [14]
  • T Brook, who landed in Victoria, British Columbia in 1862

Australia Brook migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Brook Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. James Brook who was convicted in Hertfordshire, England for life, transported aboard the "Camden" on 21st March 1831, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [15]
  • Mr. Miles Brook, British Convict who was convicted in West Riding, Yorkshire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Asia" on 5th November 1835, arriving in Tasmania ( Van Diemen's Land)1836 [16]
  • Mr. William Brook, English convict who was convicted in York, Yorkshire, England for 15 years, transported aboard the "Eden" on 8th July 1840, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [17]
  • Charles Brook, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Baboo" in 1840 [18]
  • John Brook, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Hooghly" in 1846 [19]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Brook migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Brook Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Samuel Brook, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Gipsey" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 25th October 1854, en-route to Wellington [20]
  • Mrs. Hannah Brook, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Gipsey" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 25th October 1854, en-route to Wellington [20]
  • Miss Mary Ann Brook, (b. 1858), aged 4 months, English settler from Yorkshire travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st September 1858 [21]
  • Mr. John Brook, (b. 1828), aged 30, English agricultural labourer from Yorkshire travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st September 1858 [21]
  • Mrs. Alice Brook, (b. 1833), aged 25, English settler from Yorkshire travelling from Gravesend aboard the ship "Zealandia" arriving in Lyttelton, Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand on 21st September 1858 [21]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

West Indies Brook migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [22]
Brook Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Robert Brook, aged 25, who landed in Barbados in 1635 [11]

Contemporary Notables of the name Brook (post 1700) +

  • Lyndon Brook (1926-2004), American-born, British actor in film and television
  • Jayne Brook (b. 1960), American actress, known for her role as Dr. Diane Grad on the medical drama Chicago Hope
  • Abraham Brook (b. 1789), English physicist and bookseller of Norwich [23]
  • Faith Brook (b. 1922), English actress who has appeared on stage, in films and on television
  • Clifford Clive Hardman Brook (1887-1974), English actor
  • Ezekiel "Kell" Brook (b. 1986), British professional boxer
  • Yaron Brook (b. 1961), current president and executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute
  • Kelly Brook (b. 1979), British model, actress and occasional swimwear designer
  • Peter Stephen Paul Brook (b. 1925), highly influential award winning British theatrical producer and director named "Commander of the British Empire" in 1965 and "Companion of Honour" in 1998
  • Robert Brook Aspland (1805-1869), English Unitarian minister and editor, Secretary to the British and Foreign Unitarian Association in 1859 [24]


The Brook 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: Perseverando
Motto Translation: By persevering.


  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. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  4. ^ Testa de Nevill or "Liber Feodorum" or "Book of Fees," thought to have been written by Ralph de Nevill, for King John (1199–1216)
  5. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  6. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  7. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  8. ^ https://forebears.io/australia/surnames
  9. ^ https://forebears.io/new-zealand/surnames
  10. ^ https://www.surnamemap.eu/unitedkingdom/surnames_ranking.php?p=10
  11. ^ 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)
  12. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 2018, April 30). Emigrants to New York 1820 - 1891 [PDF]. Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/emigration_new_york_1820_1891.pdf
  13. ^ Rubincam, Milton. The Old United Empire Loyalists List. Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc, 1976. (Originally published as; United Empire Loyalists. The Centennial of the Settlement of Upper Canada. Rose Publishing Company, 1885.) ISBN 0-8063-0331-X
  14. ^ Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from http://www.opc-cornwall.org/Resc/pdfs/wreck_of_emigrant_ship_john_1855.pdf
  15. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 2nd December 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/camden
  16. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 28th January 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/asia/1835
  17. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 20th October 2021). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/eden
  18. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) BABOO 1840. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1840Baboo.htm
  19. ^ State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HOOGHLY 1846. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1846Hooghly.htm
  20. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  21. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  22. ^ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  23. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 5 Feb. 2019
  24. ^ Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 6 June 2019


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