Clayten History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Clayten is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Clayten family lived in one of the many parishes by the name of Clayton in Staffordshire, Sussex, the West Riding of Yorkshire and Lancashire. Cloughton is a small village and civil parish in North Yorkshire.  
Early Origins of the Clayten family
The surname Clayten was first found in Lancashire where the family "claim descent from one Robert, who came into England with the Conqueror, and received Clayton in reward of his services."  For the most part, all villages derived their name from the Old English words "claeg" + "tun," collectively meaning "farmstead on clayey soil." 
Many villages date back to the Domesday Book of 1086 and were listed with a variety of spellings: Claitone (three listings); Claitunea; and Claitone.  Another early listing of the surname was Jordan de Claiton who was listed in Yorkshire in 1191. 
The Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum, temp. Henry III-Edward I. lists Robert de Cleyton, Lancashire, Henry III-Edward I. 
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list: Sewal de Claton in Hertfordshire; Hamo de Cleyton in Buckinghamshire; and William de Cletone in Shropshire. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 include: Willelmus de Clayton, of Clayton; Sara de Clayton; and Johannes de Clayton.  "Taunton Hall [in Knott Lanes, Lancashire], was the seat of the Claytons as early as the reign of Henry VI." 
Early History of the Clayten family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Clayten research. Another 129 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1632, 1689, 1677, 1684, 1685, 1676, 1665, 1676, 1612, 1693, 1629, 1707, 1693, 1773, 1693, 1705, 1612, 1629, 1707, 1706, 1692, 1702, 1695, 1758, 1695 and are included under the topic Early Clayten History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Clayten Spelling Variations
Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Clayton, Claydon, Clawton, Claughton and others.
Early Notables of the Clayten family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Richard Clayton of Adlington; William Clayton (1632-1689), English settler to America in 1677, acting Governor of the Pennsylvania Colony from 1684 to 1685; Richard Clayton (died 1676), English Canon, Oxford academic and administrator, Master of University College, Oxford (1665 to 1676); Sir Thomas Clayton (c 1612-1693), an English doctor, academic and politician; and Sir Robert Clayton (1629-1707) British merchant banker, politician and Lord Mayor of London.
John Clayton (1693-1773), was an English-born botanist, born at Fulham in 1693. His father...
Another 87 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Clayten Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Clayten family to Ireland
Some of the Clayten family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 108 words (8 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 Clayten family
To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Clayten or a variant listed above: Barnaby Clayton, who came to Massachusetts sometime between 1628 and 1629; Richard Clayton who settled in Virginia in 1636; Thomas Clayton settled in Austin, Rhode Island, in 1650.
Related Stories +
The Clayten 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: Probitatum quam divitias
Motto Translation: Probity rather than riches.
- ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- ^ 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)
- ^ Testa de Nevill or "Liber Feodorum" or "Book of Fees," thought to have been written by Ralph de Nevill, for King John (1199–1216)
- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.