In ancient Anglo-Saxon England
, the ancestors of the Elfforthy surname lived in a region called Elford in the county of Northumberland
and in Staffordshire
. The surname Elfforthy is a topographic
surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. Habitation
names form the other broad category of surnames that were derived from place-names. They were derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. Other local
names are derived from the names of houses, manors, estates, regions, and entire counties. As a general rule, the greater the distance between an individual and their homeland, the larger the territory they were named after.
Early Origins of the Elfforthy family
The surname Elfforthy was first found in Northumberland
at Elford, which dates back to at least 1256 when it was listed as Eleford and had two possible origins: having derived from the Old English personal name
Ella or Ellen + ford as in "ford of a man called Ella"; and "ford where elder-trees grow." CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
Elford is also a village and civil parish in Lichfield District of Staffordshire
that dates back to 1002 when it was listed as Elleford and later was listed in the Domesday Book
of 1086 as Eleford. CITATION[CLOSE]
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
While this latter village is older, the Northumberland
village is where the first records of the name were found.
Early History of the Elfforthy family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Elfforthy research.Another 255 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1677, 1714, 1703, 1749, 1837 and 1733 are included under the topic Early Elfforthy History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Elfforthy 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 Elfforthy 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. The variations of the name Elfforthy include: Elford, Elfords, Elfford, Elffords and others.
Early Notables of the Elfforthy family (pre 1700)
Distinguished members of the family include Richard Elford (1677?-1714) English singer, lay vicar at St Paul's Cathedral and Westminster Abbey, he sang before Queen Anne at St... Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Elfforthy Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Elfforthy family to the New World and Oceana
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 Elfforthy or a variant listed above: John Elford, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1628; Richard Elford, who came to Jamaica in 1657; James Elford, who arrived in America in 1685; another James Elford who settled in St. John's, Newfoundland, in 1757.
The Elfforthy 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: Difficilia quae pulchra
Motto Translation: Beautiful things are difficult.