Elley History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
Elley is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from Fitz Elie, the name of a distinguished Norman family who came to England in 1066 with William the Conqueror's invasion.
Early Origins of the Elley family
The surname Elley was first found in Cambridgeshire at Ely, a city, and the head of a union, in the Isle of Ely.  
"This place, which is the capital of an extensive district in the Fens, comprising the greater part of the northern division of Cambridgeshire, is supposed to have derived its Saxon name Elig either from the British Helyg, a willow, with which tree, from the marshy nature of the soil, it especially abounded, or, according to Bede, from Elge, an eel, for which fish it was equally remarkable. Ethelreda, daughter of Anna, King of the East Angles, founded a monastery here, in 673, for monks and nuns." 
The earliest records of the family were not from here, but in elsewhere at the time of the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273: Reginald filius Elye, Lincolnshire; and Gilbert Elye, Kent. The Placita de Quo Warranto, temp. Edward I-III also listed John filius Elie, Lincolnshire, 20 Edward I (during the twentieth year of King Edward I's reign.) In Norfolk, Nicholas de Ely was bailiff of Norwich, 1227. 
Nicholas of Ely (d. 1280), was Chancellor and successively Bishop of Worcester and Winchester, and "may have derived his name from the fact that about 1249 he was appointed Archdeacon of Ely. He was also a few years later Prebendary of St. Paul's. There is, however, a Nicholas of Ely mentioned as prior of the Cluniac monastery of Daventry in Northamptonshire between 1231 and 1264. " 
Early History of the Elley family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Elley research. Another 81 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1609, 1604, 1605, 1675, 1634 and 1656 are included under the topic Early Elley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Elley Spelling Variations
Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Elley family name include Ely, Elie, Ealy and others.
Early Notables of the Elley family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Ely (d. 1609), was an English Catholic divine, brother of Dr. Humphrey Ely, born in Herefordshire, and educated at Brasenose College, Oxford. His brother, Humphrey Ely (d. 1604), was also an English Catholic divine and a native of...
Another 47 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Elley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Elley family to Ireland
Some of the Elley family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
| Elley migration to New Zealand ||+|
Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:
Elley Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- M. A. Elley, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th August 1859 
- Miss Lucy Elley, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th August 1859 
- Mr. John Elley, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th August 1859 
- Mr. Reuben Elley, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th August 1859 
- Mr. Thomas Elley, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Joseph Fletcher" arriving in Auckland, New Zealand on 18th August 1859 
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
|Contemporary Notables of the name Elley (post 1700) ||+|
- Sir John Elley (d. 1839), British lieutenant-general, a native of Leeds, articled to a London solicitor, who enlisted in the Royal Horse Guards — then better known as the Oxford Blues
- John Elley Hinchcliff (1777-1867), English sculptor who became the chief assistant in the studio of John Flaxman, R.A. and worked in that capacity for about twenty years 
- Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
- Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- Rye, Walter, A History of Norfolk. London: Elliot Stock, 62, Paternoster Row, 1885. Print
- Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 17th October 2018). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
- Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 30 June 2020