Show ContentsFlete History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The roots of the Anglo-Saxon name Flete come from when the family resided near a creek, perhaps with a wood nearby. Fleet is derived from the Old English word fleot, for a rapidly rushing stream. The suffix "wood" was probably added to the name later. [1]

Early Origins of the Flete family

The surname Flete was first found in Lincolnshire at Fleet, a parish, in the union of Holbeach, hundred of Elloe, parts of Holland. [2] There are other villages and parishes named Fleet in Dorset and Hampshire, but this parish is the oldest as it was listed as Fleot in the Domesday Book of 1086. [3]

Fleet Street in London which is named after the River Fleet, London's largest underground river is probably the most famous use of the word "fleet." This street was the home of British national newspapers until the 1980s. Fleet Prison, built in 1197 was a notorious London prison adjacent to the River Fleet and was active until 1844 and later demolished in 1846.

As far as the surname is concerned, the first records were listed in Lincolnshire in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273: John de Flete; Richard de Flet; and Laurence de Flete. [4]

Early History of the Flete family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Flete research. Another 71 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1421, 1465, 1648, 1688, 1689, 1692, 1700 and 1712 are included under the topic Early Flete History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Flete Spelling Variations

The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries; therefore,spelling variations are common among early Anglo-Saxon names. As the form of the English language changed, even the spelling of literate people's names evolved. Flete has been recorded under many different variations, including Fleet, Fleete, Flete and others.

Early Notables of the Flete family

Distinguished members of the family include

  • John Flete (fl. 1421-1465), a Benedictine monk, prior of Westminster Abbey in the reign of Henry VI, and the author of a Latin chronicle of the early history of that foundation, entered the monastery...


United States Flete migration to the United States +

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that shrouded England made the far away New World an attractive prospect. On cramped disease-ridden ships, thousands migrated to those British colonies that would eventually become Canada and the United States. Those hardy settlers that survived the journey often went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Flete or a variant listed above:

Flete Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Henry Flete, who settled in Maryland in 1634


  1. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)


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