Origins Available: English, Scottish
Scotland, the name itself is Anglo-Saxon in origin. It is derived from the Old English "clerec," which is itself derived from the Latin "clericus," meaning "priest." The term "clerec" originally denoted a member of a religious order; however, as these were the only people who were taught to read and write, the term eventually came to refer to any literate man. Thus, the name Clarck may have originally referred to a scholar, a scribe, a secretary, or a member of a religious order. The name in Gaelic was Mac a' Chleirich. Even today, the word and profession "clerk" is typically pronounced "clark" throughout the United Kingdom.
Early Origins of the Clarck family
England and Scotland. There is a record of a James the Clerk, witnessing a charter in Dumfriesshire in 1249.
The Clarks were not a full-fledged clan; rather they were probably a sept of the ecclesiastic Clan MacPherson, although the Camerons also show a tie with the Clarks and Clarksons. Even though Clerk or Clark was primarily a name given to those of a specific occupation, the Celtic Church of the north would undoubtedly have assumed an order that was very clan-like.
The Clarks would also have been amongst the most educated and wise people to have lived in Scotland, and as conveyors of the Christian faith their power and authority would have often matched that of chiefs. The Feudal System initiated by Ceanmore in southern Scotland, was more fully implemented by the Norman King David I, who often made abbots as powerful as Chiefs, granting them extensive tracts of land and power. Clarks, then, would have certainly held a special role of authority as individuals, if not as a clan.
Early History of the Clarck family
Another 209 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1406, 1599, 1675, 1683, 1729, 1770, 1775, 1838, and 1859 are included under the topic Early Clarck History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Clarck Spelling Variations
Spelling variations of this family name include: Clark, Clerk and others.
Early Notables of the Clarck family (pre 1700)
Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Clarck Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Clarck family to Ireland
Some of the Clarck family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 275 words (20 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 Clarck family to the New World and Oceana
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Clarck Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Clarck Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
The Clarck 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: In Deo speravi
Motto Translation: In God have I trusted.
Clarck Family Crest Products