Ceal History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The distinguished surname Ceal originated in Cornwall, a region of southwest England that is celebrated in the Arthurian romances of the Middle Ages. Though surnames became common during medieval times, English people were formerly known only by a single name. Under the Feudal System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Nickname surnames were rare among the Cornish, they did occasionally adopt names that reflected the physical characteristics or other attributes of the original bearer of the name. The name Ceal is a nickname type of surname for a in the parish of Seal which had various locations in England including the counties of Northumberland, Leicester, Surrey and Kent.

However, the name could have originated from a variety of sources. It could be one who worked at the hall from the Old English word "sele," [1] or, perhaps, "dweller by the sallow copse" from the Old English "siele," or "sele." [2]

Early Origins of the Ceal family

The surname Ceal was first found in Devon where Ralph de la Sele was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1168. Roger Sele was also listed in the Pipe Rolls for Norfolk in 1198. [2]

"The Seals of the Derby district may hail originally from Seal, a Leicestershire parish close to the Derbyshire border." [3]

Today Ceal could also be a Bengali Hindu Brahmin family name which literally means "the quality of being devoted."

Early History of the Ceal family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Ceal research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Ceal History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ceal Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Seal, Seale, Seel, Sealey, Sealy, Seally, Sealley and others.

Early Notables of the Ceal family (pre 1700)

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

Ireland Migration of the Ceal family to Ireland

Some of the Ceal family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Ceal family

Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Ceal or a variant listed above: William Seal settled in Boston in 1763; Henry Seale settled in Virginia in 1637; William Seal settled in Maryland in 1740; Charles, Joseph and Piper Seel all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1870..


Contemporary Notables of the name Ceal (post 1700) +

  • Ceal Floyer, British artist in video, sound and light projection, works on paper and sculptural pieces based on ready-made objects
  • Ceal Hoffman, American Democratic Party politician, Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Minnesota, 1984 [4]


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  4. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 12) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html


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