Copelay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Copelay is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when the family lived in Copley Plain in Loughton, which was in Essex; in Copley Hill in Babraham, which was found in Cambridgeshire; or in Copley in Halifax, which was in the West Riding of Yorkshire. Thus, the surname Copelay belongs to the large category of Anglo-Saxon habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.
Early Origins of the Copelay family
The surname Copelay was first found in the West Riding of Yorkshire at Copley. Another branch of the family was later found at Sprotborough. "The manor subsequently became the property of the Copley family, of whom Sir Godfrey built the present spacious mansion in the reign of Charles II., and whose descendant Sir Joseph Copley, Bart., is now lord." 
"The manor [of Batley in the West Riding of Yorkshire] was for eighteen generations held by the Copley family." 
Early History of the Copelay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Copelay research. Another 81 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1575, 1567, 1607, 1648, 1693, 1692, 1692, 1623, 1677, 1653, 1709, 1691, 1679, 1685, 1695 and 1707 are included under the topic Early Copelay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Copelay Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Copelay are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Copelay include: Copley, Coppley, Copply, Coply and others.
Early Notables of the Copelay family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Thomas Copley of Bedingfield; Anthony Copley (1567-1607), English, Catholic supporter of Queen Elizabeth, known for his disapproval of the Jesuit meditations on martyrdom; Sir Lionel Copley (1648-1693), who arrived in America in 1692 to become the 1st Royal Governor of Maryland (1692 until...
Another 51 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Copelay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Copelay family to Ireland
Some of the Copelay family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Copelay family
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Copelay or a variant listed above: James Copley who settled in Virginia in 1635; and Thomas Copley, who came to Maryland in 1636.
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- ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.