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The Anglo- Norman Conquest of Ireland lead by Strongbow introduced the first non-Gaelic elements into Irish nomenclature. These Anglo- Normans brought some traditions to Ireland that were not readily found within Gaelic system of hereditary surnames. One of the best examples of this is the local surname. Local surnames, such as Forristal, were taken from the name of a place or a geographical feature where the person lived, held land, or was born. These surnames were very common in England, but were almost non-existent within Ireland previous to the conquest. The earliest surnames of this type came from Normandy, but as the Normans moved, they often created names in reference to where they actually resided. Therefore, some settlers eventually took names from Irish places. Originally, these place names were prefixed by "de," which means "from" in French. This type of prefix was eventually either made a part of the surname, if the place name began with a vowel, or was eliminated entirely. The Forristal family originally lived near a paddock, which is a small grassy enclosed area in which horses can graze and exercise. The surname Forristal is derived from a dialectical word which means paddock. The surname Forristal belongs to the large category of Anglo-Norman habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.

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The surname Forristal was first found in Kent, where they held a family seat as Lords of the manor of Forstall, and were granted the lands by William the Conqueror for their assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.

During the Middle Ages, a single person often had their name recorded by church officials and scribes many different ways. Names were typically spelt as they sounded, which resulted in many different spelling variations. The many versions of the name Forristal to have been recorded over the years include: Forristal, Forristall, Forrestal, Forrestall, Forrestell, Forestal, Forestel, Forestall, Forestell, Forstal, Forstall, Furstal and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Forristal research. Another 305 words (22 lines of text) covering the years 1172, 1359, and 1682 are included under the topic Early Forristal History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Forristal Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century

  • Bridget Forristal, aged 22, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig "Lady Douglas" from New Ross
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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: In corda inimicorum regis
Motto Translation: In the King's enemies

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Citations



    Other References

    1. MacLysaght, Edward. Irish Families Their Names, Arms and Origins 4th Edition. Dublin: Irish Academic, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-7165-2364-7).
    2. Rasmussen, Louis J. . San Francisco Ship Passenger Lists 4 Volumes Colma, California 1965 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1978. Print.
    3. Hickey, D.J. and J.E. Doherty. A New Dictionary of Irish History form 1800 2nd Edition. Dublin: Gil & MacMillian, 2003. Print.
    4. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    5. Tepper, Michael Ed & Elizabeth P. Bentley Transcriber. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800-1819. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1986. Print.
    6. Leyburn, James Graham. The Scotch-Irish A Social History. Chapel Hill: UNC Press, 1962. Print. (ISBN 0807842591).
    7. Heraldic Scroll and Map of Family names and Origins of Ireland. Dublin: Mullins. Print.
    8. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
    9. Filby, P. William and Mary K Meyer. Passenger and Immigration Lists Index in Four Volumes. Detroit: Gale Research, 1985. Print. (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8).
    10. Egle, William Henry. Pennsylvania Genealogies Scotch-Irish and German. Harrisburg: L.S. Hart, 1886. Print.
    11. ...

    The Forristal Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Forristal Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

    This page was last modified on 10 January 2011 at 09:12.

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