Chanceau History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the historical and enchanting region of France emerged a multitude of notable family names, including that of the distinguished Chanceau family. Originally, the people in this region went by one (personal) name. Surnames evolved during the Middle Ages when people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. These names then began to become "fixed" or hereditary between the generations. One of the types of names adopted as surnames were those derived from nicknames. Nickname surnames were derived from an eke-name, or added name, and generally reflected some physical characteristics or other attribute of the first person that used the name. The Chanceau surname derives from the Old French word "cheaunce," which means "chance," and as such was likely originally a nickname for a gambler, for a lucky person, or ironically, for an unlucky person.

Early Origins of the Chanceau family

The surname Chanceau was first found in Chanceaux, in Touraine. Many of the family settled in Devonshire, England from the time of the Conquest. "In 1086 Milton, with Lideton, Devon, belonged to Tavistock Abbey. Goisfrid then held them, from whom descended Reginald de Lideton, who 1165 held two fees of Tavistock." [1]

"It appears that the Lidetons and Chanceaux, who were Lords of Lideton, were the same. Geoffrey, Giles, and John de Cancellis or Chanceaux are mentioned, of whom the last named surrendered. Lideton to Edward I.' [2]

"It was at that period they removed from the county, and we next find them in Sussex, where Emeric de Chanceux or de Cancellis served as Sheriff, 7 & 8 Edward I. (during the seven and eighth year of Edward I's reign); and in the following century in Northamptonshire, when Robert de Chanceaux acquired Upton in right of his wife Margaret, the widow of Robert Bellew. They continued there for three descents, and their heiress married Richard Knightley. Nicholas de Chanceus in 1316 had been certified Lord of the Hundred of Nobottle-Grove, in that county, in addition to the township of Upton. Giles de Chanceaux, two years before, received a writ of military summons ; and John de Chanceux was summoned from the Hundred of Rochford in Essex to serve against the Scots in 1322. Giles was the son of John de Chanceux, who in 1289 held the manor of Canewdon of the King in capite of his Honour of Rayleigh." [3]

Early History of the Chanceau family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Chanceau research. Another 143 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1263, 1406, 1412, 1423, 1407, 1409, 1644, 1420, 1428, 1484, 1507, 1600 and 1656 are included under the topic Early Chanceau History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Chanceau Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Lachance, LaChance, Lachancé, Lachancée, Lachancy, Lachancey, Chancé, Chancée, Chancy, Chancey, le Chancy, le Chancey, de Chancy, de Chancey, Chancel, Chansel, Chanceau, Duchancel, Duchansel, Duchanceau, Chancelier, Lechancelier and many more.

Early Notables of the Chanceau family (pre 1700)

Notable at this time was Étienne de Chancey, advisor to the duke, 1420; Hughes de Chancey, a squire, 1428; Jean de Chancey, advisor to the duke...
Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Chanceau Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Chanceau family

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Catherine and Jean Chancelier, who emigrated to Canada; Charles Chancey, who settled in Virginia with his wife and two children, in 1621; Antoine Lachance, who arrived in Quebec in 1659.



  1. ^ Liber Niger Scutarii ("Black Book of the Exchequer"), containing reports by county on feudal holdings in England in 1166 (reign of Henry II)
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3


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