Cavendesh History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Cavendesh is a name that came to England in the 11th century wave of migration that was set off by the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Cavendesh family lived in Suffolk where Gernon de Montfichet was granted the lands of Cavendish by Duke William of Normandy. 
"The descent of the Cavendish family from Gernon has been disputed, but (as I intend to show) without reason. The Gernons were a branch of the Barons of Montfichet, Montfiquet, or Montfiket in Normandy, so named after their Scandinavian ancestor. The castle of Montfichet long remained, as well as the Church of St. Catherine in the castle, a foundation of this family. About 1050 Robert, surnamed Guernon (moustache), Baron of Montfichet, witnessed a charter of Duke William (Gall. Christ. xi. Instr. 229). He had issue, 1, William de Montfichet, who d. s. p., when the barony devolved on William, the son of his brother; 2, Robert Guernon or Gernon, who held a great barony in Essex, &c., 1086. From his elder son William de Montfichet descended the Barons of that name, whose seats were at Stanstead Montfichet, Essex, and Montfichet Tower, London, of which city the Montfichets were hereditary standard-bearers or military chiefs in time of war. The younger branches retained the name of Gernon. Alured Gernon, brother of William de Montfichet, had estates in Essex and Middlesex 1130 (Rot. Pip.). Matthew, his son, 1135 witnessed a charter of William Montfichet (Mon. i. 803). Ralph, his son, 1165, held a fief from Montfichet in Essex, and was granted Bakewell, Derbyshire, by Richard I. (Testa de Neville). He had Ralph G., founder of Lees Priory, Essex, father of William G., who had two sons : l, Ralph, ancestor of a line of Gernon frequently mentioned in Essex, Suffolk, and Derby, and which long continued; 2, Geoffry. Geoffry, surnamed de Cavendish from his residence at Cavendish, Suffolk, appears in 1302 as bailsman with Walter de Cavendish, his son, for certain citizens of London who had been charged with the unlawful possession of some crown jewels." 
Early Origins of the Cavendesh family
The surname Cavendesh was first found in Suffolk, when Gernon de Montfichet was granted the lands of Cavendish by Duke William of Normandy, his liege lord, for distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D. The Montfichets from Montfiquet, Calvados, in Normandy, sired the family of Cavendish, Bacon, Fitchet, and Montfitchet.
The family trace their lineage back to "Sir John Canvendish, who in the reign of Edward III was Chief Justice of the King's Bench. It was John, a younger son of the Judge, who killed Wat Tyler, and from him the family are descended." 
"Chief Justice Cavendish had a tragic end. He was beheaded in the market place of Bury, during an insurrection in 1382." 
Early History of the Cavendesh family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cavendesh research. Another 144 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1384, 1592, 1592, 1676, 1594, 1654, 1630, 1691, 1660, 1676, 1617, 1684, 1624, 1674, 1659, 1680, 1675, 1623, 1673, 1673, 1700, 1695, 1700 and 1797 are included under the topic Early Cavendesh History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Cavendesh Spelling Variations
Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Cavendesh have been found, including Cavendish, Cavendesh, Cavandish, Cavondish, Cavindish, Caviness and many more.
Early Notables of the Cavendesh family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Thomas Cavendish (d. 1592), a British circumnavigator of the globe, often regarded as a privateer; Sir William Cavendish (1592-1676), 4th Duke of Norcastle, 1st Duke of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, a prominent soldier, writer, and noted patron of the arts; Sir Charles Cavendish (ca. 1594-1654), an English aristocrat, Member of Parliament, and patron of Philosophers and mathematicians; Henry Cavendish, 2nd Duke of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, KG, PC (1630-1691), English politician who sat in the House of Commons from 1660 to 1676; William Cavendish, 3rd Earl of Devonshire (c.1617-1684), an English nobleman, Royalist supporter; Margaret Cavendish, (1624-1674), the...
Another 105 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cavendesh Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Cavendesh family to Ireland
Some of the Cavendesh family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 40 words (3 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 Cavendesh family
For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Cavendesh were among those contributors: Margaret Cavendish, who settled in New England in 1752; Michael Cavendish, who immigrated to New Brunswick in 1847; Alexander Cavendish, who came to New Orleans in 1849.
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: Cavendo tutus
Motto Translation: Safe by being cautious.
- Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
- 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)
- Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
- Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 2 of 3