The name Cursay is an old Anglo-Saxon
name. It comes from when a family lived in Kersey, a parish in Suffolk
. The place-name Kersey is derived from the Old English elements cærse,
which means watercress, and eg,
the old English word for island. It was recorded as Cæresige c. 995, and as Careseia in the Domesday Book, CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
compiled in 1086. The name as a total means "island where the watercress grows." The surname is derived from the place-name. In the early Middle Ages, local
surnames were often proceeded by the word de
which meant of and at, respectively. This custom was brought to England
by the Normans
after they conquered the Saxon Nobility at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. The surname as a whole, de Cursay,
meant "of Kersey." Eventually, the use of de
declined, as Old English and Old Norman fused into Old English over the next few centuries.
Early Origins of the Cursay family
The surname Cursay was first found in Suffolk
at Kersey, a village and a civil parish in the Babergh district which today includes the hamlets of Kersey Tye, Kersey Upland, Wicker Street Green, and William's Green. Originally part of the hundred
of Cosford, it comprised about 1,465 acres and an Augustine priory was founded there at an early period dedicated to St. Mary and St. Anthony; at the Dissolution it was granted to King's College, Cambridge. CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Kersey is the name of a coarse woollen cloth having derived its name from kersey yarn and ultimately from the village of Kersey.
Early History of the Cursay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Cursay research.Another 131 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1272, 1616, 1690 and 1720 are included under the topic Early Cursay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Cursay Spelling Variations
Before the last few hundred years, the English language had no fast system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations
are commonly found in early Anglo-Saxon
surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Cursay were recorded, including Kersey, Kercey, Keresey, Kearsey and others.
Early Notables of the Cursay family (pre 1700)
Another 32 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Cursay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Cursay family to the New World and Oceana
To escape oppression and starvation at that time, many English families left for the "open frontiers" of the New World with all its perceived opportunities. In droves people migrated to the many British colonies, those in North America in particular, paying high rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Although many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, those who did see the shores of North America perceived great opportunities before them. Many of the families that came from England
went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Research into various historical records revealed some of first members of the Cursay family emigrate to North America: Thomas Kersey, who came to the Somers Islands in 1673; John Kersey, who settled in Philadelphia in 1731; as well as Thomas Kersey, who settled in Maryland in 1775..