name Darnlay comes from when its first bearer worked as a grower of darnel, a plant believed to induce intoxication. The name's origins are Old French; darnel is the French name for this plant. It was brought into England
by the Normans
after the Norman Conquest
of 1066. Occupational
names frequently were derived from the principal object associated with the activity of the original bearer, such as tools or products. These types of occupational
surnames are called metonymic
surnames. Occasionally the name was local; there is a Darnall in Yorkshire
, and a small group of people took their name from that location. This makes Darnlay an example of an English polygenetic
surname, which is a surname that was developed in a number of different locations and adopted by various families independently.
Early Origins of the Darnlay family
The surname Darnlay was first found in Lincolnshire
where they held a family seat
from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest
and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.
Early History of the Darnlay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Darnlay research.Another 122 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1095, 1177, 1193, 1379, 1638, 1604, 1645, 1711, 1605, 1675, 1683 and 1689 are included under the topic Early Darnlay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Darnlay Spelling Variations
Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon
surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations
. Changes in Anglo-Saxon
names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Darnlay include Darnell, Darnall, Darnoll, Darnel, Darnal, Darnol, Darnhill, Dartnall, Dartnell and many more.
Early Notables of the Darnlay family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Sir Thomas Darnell, 1st Baronet
(died c. 1638), an English landowner, at the centre of a celebrated state legal case in the reign of Charles I of England
, often known as the "Five Knights' Case" but to... Another 44 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Darnlay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Darnlay family to the New World and Oceana
Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Darnlay or a variant listed above: Thomas Darnel, who arrived in Maryland in 1684; Richard Durnel, a bonded passenger who arrived in Barbados in1669; Mr. & Mrs. H. Darnell who arrived in San Francisco California with 2 children in 1856.
The Darnlay 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: Deus nobiscum
Motto Translation: God be with us.