Clafering History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Today's generation of the Clafering family bears a name that was brought to England by the migration wave that was started by the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Clafering family lived in Essex, where they held lands and a family seat at Clavering. "The village is irregularly built, but contains some respectable houses, and the surrounding scenery is agreeably diversified. The church is a spacious and handsome edifice of stone, with an embattled tower. " [1]

Early Origins of the Clafering family

The surname Clafering was first found in Essex where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Clavering. They are said to be descended from Eustace, a Norman noble who had two sons, Serlo and John. The former built Knaresborough Castle. The latter had a son Pagan, and Eustace, the progenitor of the Clavering line.

At the time of the taking of the Domesday Book survey in 1086 A.D. the village of Clavering held a Mill, 5 beehives, a foal, 23 goats, and a sail-less windmill. The castle, of which the moats still survive, was built before the Conquest by Robert FitzWinarc. The village was held by the Swein (Earl) of Essex. [2]

Another reference has a slightly different origin of the family: "Robert Fitz-Roger, Baron of Warkworth, the ancestor of this great Norman family, was father of John, who assumed the name 'Clavering,' from a lordship in Essex, as it is said, by the appointment of King Edward I. From Sir Alan, younger brother of John, the present family is descended." [3]

Early History of the Clafering family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Clafering research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1848, 1850, 1866, 1867, 1565, 1630, 1607, 1629, 1592, 1648, 1620, 1702, 1649, 1656, 1658, 1668, 1707, 1715, 1672, 1714, 1698, 1762, 1727, 1731, 1734 and 1741 are included under the topic Early Clafering History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Clafering Spelling Variations

Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Clafering include Clavering, Clafering, Claffering, Clavring and others.

Early Notables of the Clafering family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was James Clavering (1565-1630), an English merchant adventurer, Mayor of Newcastle upon Tyne in 1607 who bought an estate at Axwell House, near Blaydon on Tyne in 1629; John Clavering (c. 1592-1648); and his son, Sir James Clavering, 1st Baronet (1620-1702), an English landowner and politician, High Sheriff of Durham in 1649, Member of Parliament for Durham (1656-1658); James Clavering, 2nd Baronet (1668-1707), who took part in...
Another 74 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Clafering Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Clafering family

In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Claferings to arrive on North American shores: Anthony Clavrin who settled in the Carolinas in 1730.



The Clafering 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: Ad coelos volans
Motto Translation: Flying to the heavens.


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.


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