Cecile History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Cecile is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Cecile family lived in Devon. The name refers to the family's former place of residence, St Cecile, a Norman area of Flanders. 
Cecilia or Cecily (1469-1507), was "the third daughter of Edward IV, was born towards the end of 1469. At the age of five she was betrothed by proxy to James, the eldest son of James III of Scotland, and arrangements were soon made by which her dowry of twenty thousand marks should be paid by yearly installments. " 
Early Origins of the Cecile family
The surname Cecile was first found in Devon where they are "probably a branch of the Counts of Gand, whose arms (barry) it bears, with escutcheons charged with the lion rampant of Flanders. The arms are still borne in Flanders by a family of the same name."  Maurice de Cassel was probably one of the first to be listed in England during the reign of William I. His son, Robert de Kessel or Ciselle, assisted Robert Fitz-Hamon in the conquest of Glamorganshire in 1093. 
Saissil was recorded in Hertfordshire in the Domesday Book of 1086.  Later in Shropshire, Seisil was listed in the Pipe Rolls of 1188. Mononym names were quite common at this time. By 1205, William Seisel was listed in the Pipe Rolls of Hertfordshire and later again, William Seysel was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Worcestershire in 1275. 
Another reference claims "the family, doubtless of Norman origin, can be traced to Robert Sitsilt, who in 1091 assisted Robert Fitz-Hamon in the conquest of Glamorganshire."  Conflicting data is quite common with early records such as these. Continuing on: "from his descendant [Robert Kessel or Robert Sitsilt] Walter de Alterens, living 1165, descended the noble house of Cecil." 
Further to the north, in St. Martin's in Northamptonshire a later branch of the family was found. "The church [of St. Martin's] is a handsome structure in the later English style, erected by a bishop of Lincoln in the fifteenth century, and contains monuments to several members of the Cecil family, including one to Lord Treasurer Burghley, whose ancient mansion in the immediate neighbourhood, Burghley House." 
Early History of the Cecile family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cecile research. Another 115 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1379, 1520, 1598, 1550, 1553, 1558, 1572, 1572, 1563, 1612, 1591, 1668, 1605, 1612, 1657, 1640, 1653, 1648, 1683, 1660, 1668, 1666, 1694, 1670, 1716, 1701, 1674, 1721, 1712 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Cecile History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Cecile Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Cecile are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Cecile include Cecil, Cecill, Cecyll, Cyssel, Cessell, Sitsilt, Sicelt, Seycil and many more.
Early Notables of the Cecile family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley, KG (1520-1598), an English statesman, the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign, twice Secretary of State (1550-1553) and (1558-1572) and Lord High Treasurer from 1572 until his death; Robert Cecil, 1st Earl of Salisbury, KG, PC (ca. 1563-1612), an English administrator and politician; William Cecil, 2nd Earl of Salisbury, KG (1591-1668), known as Viscount Cranborne from 1605 to...
Another 76 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cecile Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Cecile family
Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Cecile, or a variant listed above: John Cecill who settled in Barbados in 1663; William Cecill arrived in Pennsylvania in 1682; later Joseph Cecil arrived in New York in 1823; and Thomas Cecil arrived in Philadelphia in 1866..
Contemporary Notables of the name Cecile (post 1700) +
- Patricia Cecile Dunn (b. 1953), American former non-executive chairwoman of the board of Hewlett-Packard Company
- Cecile Pineda (1932-2022), American novelist who won numerous awards including the Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction and a Gold Medal from the Commonwealth Club of California in 1986 for Face, and a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship
- Cecile Codere, sociologist in Quebec
- Cecile Duetsch, Actress
- Cecile Richards (b. 1958), American Democratic Party politician, Deputy chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Nancy Pelosi; President, Planned Parenthood, 2006; Speaker, Democratic National Convention, 2008
- Cecile D. Singer, American politician, Member of New York State Assembly, 1989-94 
- Cecile Weich, American Republican politician, Candidate for Justice of New York Supreme Court 12th District, 2001 
- Cecile L. Griel, American politician, Candidate for New York State Assembly, 1921 (New York County 19th District), 1922 (New York County 19th District), 1923 (New York County 1st District) 
- Cecile Beckwith, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Ohio, 1944 
Related Stories +
The Cecile 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: Cor unum via una
Motto Translation: One heart one way.
- ^ 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)
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, November 19) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 14) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 14) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html