Byfeld History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient roots of the Byfeld family name are in the Anglo-Saxon culture. The name Byfeld comes from when the family lived in Northamptonshire, where the name is associated with the village of Byfield. In the Domesday Book of 1086, Byfield was recorded as lands held by Hugh de Grandmesnil and Earl Hugh. [1]

The place name literally means "place by the open country," from the Old English "bi" + "feld." [2]

Early Origins of the Byfeld family

The surname Byfeld was first found in Northamptonshire, at Byfield, a parish, in the union of Daventry, hundred of Chipping-Warden. [3] [4] [5]

One of the first records of the family was found in Norfolk where Nigel de Bifeld was listed in the Feet of Fines for 1202. Later Robert de Byfeld was listed in the Assize Rolls for Northamptonshire in 1314-1316. Later again, Adam Byfelde was found in Gloucestershire in 1367. [6]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included an entry for John de Byfeld, but no county was provided for this entry. [7]

Early History of the Byfeld family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Byfeld research. Another 178 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1273, 1367, 1579, 1597, 1597, 1616, 1654, 1741, 1579, 1622, 1597, 1596, 1579, 1665, 1622, 1598, 1664, 1598, 1597, 1660, 1615, 1643 and 1654 are included under the topic Early Byfeld History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Byfeld Spelling Variations

One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Byfeld has appeared include Byfield, Byfeld, Byfelde, Byfild, Byfielde, Bifield and many more.

Early Notables of the Byfeld family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Nicholas Byfield (1579-1622), a prominent Puritan minister and writer. He was a native of Warwickshire, son by his first wife of Richard Byfield, who became vicar of Stratford-on-Avon in January 1597. Nicholas was entered at Exeter College, Oxford, in Lent term 1596, as 'aged 17 at least,' which gives 1579 as the latest date for his birth. Taking orders he intended to exercise his ministry in Ireland; but on his way thither he preached at Chester, and was prevailed upon to remain as one of the city preachers, without cure. He lectured at...
Another 270 words (19 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Byfeld Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Byfeld family

At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Byfeld arrived in North America very early: Robert Byfield who arrived in America in 1766.



  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  2. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  5. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  6. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  7. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print


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