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Elsay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



The history of the Elsay name began with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from the baptismal name Elsy, which was originally derived from the Old Norse word Aelfsige, which literally means elf-victory. Baptismal names began to appear as surnames relatively late in the growth of the naming tradition. This is a little surprising, given the popularity of biblical figures in the Christian countries of Europe. Nevertheless, surnames derived from baptismal names grew in popularity during the Middle Ages, and have become one of the foremost sources for surnames.

Early Origins of the Elsay family


The surname Elsay was first found in Yorkshire 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 Elsay family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Elsay research.
Another 127 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Elsay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Elsay Spelling Variations


Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Elsay family name include Elsley, Elsey and others.

Early Notables of the Elsay family (pre 1700)


More information is included under the topic Early Elsay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Elsay family to the New World and Oceana


For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Elsay surname or a spelling variation of the name include : John Elsley who settled in Virginia in 1652; John Elsey settled in Maryland in 1740; Nicholas Elsey settled in Boston in 1637; Augustine Elsly settled in Virginia in 1653.

The Elsay 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: Sans Dieu rien
Motto Translation: Without God, nothing.


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