Show ContentsConstance History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Constance family name is linked to the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. Their name comes from the baptismal name which means Custance. Alternatively the name could have been a local name for someone from Coutance, a location name in Normandy. [1]

Early Origins of the Constance family

The surname Constance was first found in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 as both a forename and surname: Constance, or Custance de Byerne, Nottinghamshire; John Custaunce, Cambridgeshire; Henry filius Custance, Cambridgeshire; and Custance Burnard, Cambridgeshire.

Later the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 continued this tradition with: Custance de Bergh; and Adam Custanson. "The last two instances entered together are probably mother and son. " [2]

Early History of the Constance family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Constance research. Another 55 words (4 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1379, 1629, 1801, 1650, 1669, 1881 and 1904 are included under the topic Early Constance History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Constance Spelling Variations

Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Constance include Custerson, Custer, Custance, Constance, Custeson and others.

Early Notables of the Constance family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include Sir Roger Cuttance (fl. 1650-1669), an English Captain in the navy, a native of Weymouth, Dorset. [3] Hambleton Custance, was a Lieutenant-Colonel...
Another 29 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Constance Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Constance Ranking

In the United States, the name Constance is the 16,994th most popular surname with an estimated 2,487 people with that name. [4]

United States Constance migration to the United States +

Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Constance were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records:

Constance Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Marie Constance, who arrived in New Orleans in 1870
  • Christopher Constance, who arrived in Kansas in 1888

Contemporary Notables of the name Constance (post 1700) +

  • Mrs. Sheila Constance Saunders B.E.M., British recipient of the British Empire Medal on 8th June 2018, for services to the community in Ketton and Barrowden, Rutland
  • Annie Constance Tocker (1889-1980), New Zealand librarian, Methodist deaconess, nurse and child welfare officer from Greytown, Wairarapa
  • Perdita Constance Huston (1936-2001), American journalist and women's rights activist, inspiration for the Perdita Huston Human Rights Award
  • Dorothy Constance Stratton (1899-2006), American director of the SPARS, the United States Coast Guard Women's Reserve during World War II, eponym of the USCGC Stratton (WMSL-752)
  • Dame Gillian Constance Weir DBE (b. 1941), New Zealand organist
  • Eleanor Constance Lodge CBE (1869-1936), English historian and Principal of Westfield College, London
  • Laura Constance Netzel (1839-1927), Swedish composer
  • Mary Constance DuBois (1879-1959), American author
  • Constance Frye "Connie" Martinson (1932-2023), American writer and television personality, host of Connie Martinson Talks Books, which aired on public television
  • Constance Anne Wilson (1927-2023), British food historian, Assistant Librarian in the Brotherton Library at the University of Leeds (1961-1992)

The Constance 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: Appetitus rationi pareat
Motto Translation: Let your desires obey your reason.

  1. Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. "What are the 5,000 Most Common Last Names in the U.S.?"., on Facebook