Show ContentsD'isle History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the D'isle family goes back to the Medieval landscape of southern France, to a region known as Languedoc. It is derived from the family living in the parish of l'Isle, in Languedoc. The name D'isle translates as of l'Isle, or of the island.

Early Origins of the D'isle family

The surname D'isle was first found in Languedoc, where this family was established in early times.

Another more probable derivation of De Lisle is "from the Castle of Lisle, Normandy. Burcharde Insula witnessed a charter in Normandy c. 1066." [1]

A great many of the family emigrated to England where "Robert, his son, granted lands to Cerisy Abbey, temp. William I. His descendants were chiefly seated in the North of England. Ralph, John, and Robert de Insula occur in Yorkshire, Otui or Otwer de Insula in Northumberland, 1165: from whom descended Sir John de Lisle of Woodburn in that county, whose descendants long continued there." [2]

There is, however, a far earlier mention of the family in this country. "In the Wiltshire Domesday, one Humphrey de Lisle is recorded as holding of the King a fief of not less than twenty-seven manors. Of this Humphrey, I can say no more than that in January 1091 he was in attendance at Hastings on King William II., then about to embark for Normandy. He appears to have left a daughter and sole heiress, variously called Adelina de Insula and Adeliza de Dunstanville, for it was the custom of great heiresses to retain their paternal name after marriage." [1]

"The De Lisles were considerable landowners in [Northumberland], and are often to be met with in its records. In 1272, Robert de Lisle was Lord of Chipchase, held in 1307 by Peter de Lisle, with Whitwell, as part of a knight's fee of ancient feoffment. From them it passed to the Herons. John de Lisle was Sheriff in 1326; and Sir Robert de Lisle in 1409 and 1421, in addition to being three several times knight of the shire. This Sir Robert was seated at Felton, having married Mary, daughter and co-heir of Adomar of Felton, uncle to David Strabolgie, Earl of Athole." [1]

In Scotland, the family certainly existed for over three hundred years. About 1243, Radulphus de Insula dominus de Duchal, a barony in Renfrewshire, witnesses several grants to Paisley Abbey. From him descended John de Lisle, to whom and to his wife Margaret de Vaux, David II. granted the lands of Buchquhan (Buchanan) in Stirlingshire; and Sir Robert Lyll or Lyle, "a Baron of an ample fortune," created Lord Lyle by James II. in 1445. His son Robert was Justiciar of Scotland under James IV., and the grandfather of James, Master of Lyle, the last of the family, who, in 1556, died without succession in his father's lifetime. His brother-in-law. Sir Neil Montgomerie, inherited the castle and barony of Duchal.

Early History of the D'isle family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our D'isle research. Another 167 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1572, 1589, 1644, 1671, 1675, 1688, 1696, 1738, 1756, 1813, 1816, and 1882 are included under the topic Early D'isle History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

D'isle Spelling Variations

History has changed the spelling of most surnames. During the early development of the French language in the Middle Ages, a person gave his version of his name, phonetically, to a scribe, a priest, or a recorder. Some variables were adopted by different branches of the family name. Hence, there spelling variations of the name D'isle, some of which include Delisle, Delile, Delille, de l'Isle, d'Isle and many more.

Early Notables of the D'isle family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the family name at this time was Guillaume Delisle (1675-1726), a French cartographer known for his popular and accurate maps of Europe and the newly explored Americas and Africa; Joseph-Nicolas Delisle (1688-1768), a French...
Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early D'isle Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the D'isle family

Migration from France to New France or Quebec as it was now more popularly called, continued from France until it fell in 1759. By 1675, there were 7000 French in Quebec. By the same year the Acadian presence in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island had reached 500. In the treaty of Utrecht, the Acadians were ceded by France to Britain in 1713. In 1755, 10,000 French Acadians refused to take an oath of allegiance to England and were deported. They found refuge in Louisiana. In 1793, the remaining French in these provinces came under British rule. Meanwhile, in Quebec, the French race flourished, founding in Lower Canada, one of the two great solitudes which became Canada. Many of this distinguished family name D'isle were prominent in social, cultural, religious and political affairs in France and New France. Amongst the settlers in North America with this distinguished name D'isle were Jacques Delisle, who settled in Quebec, where he married Marie-Louise Girard in 1738; François Delisle, who settled in Louisiana in 1756; Jean-Baptiste-Pierre Delisle, who settled in Saint-Villier, where he married Marie-Josette Bonnet in 1760.

  1. Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  2. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X) on Facebook