An ancient Pictish-Scottish family was the first to use the name Fifes. It is a name for someone who lived in the county of Fife
. The surname Fifes belongs to the category of habitation
names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. As a general rule, the greater the distance between individuals and their homelands, the larger the territory they were named after. For example, people who only moved to another parish would be known by the name of their original village, while people who migrated to a different country were often known by the name of a region or country from which they came.
Early Origins of the Fifes family
The surname Fifes was first found in Fife
, 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 Fifes family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fifes research.Another 236 words (17 lines of text) covering the years 1296, 1436, 1447, 1453, 1454, 1462, and 1464 are included under the topic Early Fifes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Fifes Spelling Variations
During the Middle Ages, there was no basic set of rules and scribes wrote according to sound. The correct spelling of Scottish names were further compromised after many haphazard translations from Gaelic to English and back. Spelling variations
of the name Fifes include Fyfe, Fife, Fyffe, Phyfe, Phyffe and others.
Early Notables of the Fifes family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Fifes Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Fifes family to Ireland
Some of the Fifes family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 86 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Fifes family to the New World and Oceana
Scots left their country by the thousands to travel to Australia
and North America. Desperate for freedom and an opportunity to fend for themselves, many paid huge fees and suffered under terrible conditions on long voyages. Still, for those who made the trip, freedom and opportunity awaited. In North America, many fought their old English oppressors in the American War of Independence
. In recent years, Scottish heritage has been an increasingly important topic, as Clan
societies and other organizations have renewed people's interest in their history. An examination of passenger and immigration lists shows many early settlers bearing the name of Fifes: John Fife
who settled in Maryland in 1739; Alexander Fife
settled in Jamaica in 1774; Isobell Fife
and her child settled in New York State in 1775; James Fife
settled in Charles Town [Charleston], South Carolina in 1774.
The Fifes 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: Virtute et opera
Motto Translation: By virtue and energy.