Show ContentsDovay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Dovay arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name Dovay comes from the Norman personal name Tofig.

Early Origins of the Dovay family

The surname Dovay was first found in Norfolk where they held a family seat from early times. "Tovus, otherwise known as Tovi, came to England with the Conqueror, and acquired several manors in Norfolk. The name is found in [the] Domesday [Book] as Tovi or Tovius." [1]

Michael Tovy was Lord Mayor of London (1244-1245.)

Early History of the Dovay family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Dovay research. Another 83 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1692 and 1745 are included under the topic Early Dovay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Dovay Spelling Variations

Endless spelling variations are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Tovey, Tovy and others.

Early Notables of the Dovay family (pre 1700)

Another 34 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Dovay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Dovay family

To escape the political and religious persecution within England at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Dovay or a variant listed above: Benjamin and Richard Tovey settled in Barbados in 1679 with their servants; Nathanial and John Tovey settled in Virginia in 1663.

  1. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print. on Facebook