Show ContentsFoulis History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

In Scottish history, few names go farther back than Foulis, whose ancestors lived among the clans of the Pictish tribe. The ancestors of the Foulis family lived in the place called Foulzie in the parish of King Edward in the county of Aberdeen. The surname Foulis belongs to the category of habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.

Early Origins of the Foulis family

The surname Foulis was first found in Aberdeenshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Obar Dheathain), a historic county, and present day Council Area of Aberdeen at Foulzie. James Fowlie was listed in Bartholl Chapell in 1741. [1] Further to the south in Greenhow in the North Riding of Yorkshire, the Foulis family gained a family seat during the reign of James I. Originally held by the D'Arcys, that family had lost the lands during the reign of Henry VIII when it was reverted to the crown. [2]

Nearby, in Ingleby-Greenhow, the family of Foulis bought the lands from the Eures. From this branch , Henry Foulis, the historian and divine, was born at Ingleby manor-house in the middle of the 17th century. "The parish is now almost exclusively the property of Sir William Foulis, Bart., who is lord of the manor. Ingleby manor-house, the seat of Sir William Foulis, is a stately mansion of stone, finely situated on an eminence; it contains some oak carvings, and an ancient portrait of Queen Elizabeth." [2]

Early History of the Foulis family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Foulis research. Another 202 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1198, 1248, 1295, 1305, 1422, 1429, 1469, 1486, 1552, 1688, 1645, 1711, 1638, 1669, 1634, 1626, 1629, 1800 and 1654 are included under the topic Early Foulis History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Foulis Spelling Variations

Although Medieval Scotland lacked a basic set of spelling rules, which meant that scribes recorded names according to their sounds it was not uncommon for the names of a father and son to be recorded differently. As a result, there are many spelling variations of Scottish single names. Foulis has been written Fowlie, Fowley, Fowlis, Foulis and others.

Early Notables of the Foulis family (pre 1700)

Notable amongst the Clan at this time was Sir James Foulis, Lord Colinton (d. 1688), a Scottish judge; and his eldest son, James Foulis, Lord Reidfurd (1645?-1711), a Scottish judge; Henry Foulis (1638-1669), an English academic theologian and controversial author; Sir Alexander Foulis, made a Baronet June 7th 1634; Sir David Foulis, 1st Baronet Foulis was Custos Rotulorum (keeper of...
Another 59 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Foulis Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Foulis family to Ireland

Some of the Foulis family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Foulis migration to the United States +

Thousands of Scots left their home country to travel to Ireland or Australia, or to cross the Atlantic for the North American colonies. The difficult crossing was an enormous hurdle, but those who survived found freedom and opportunity in ample measure. Some Scots even fought for their freedom in the American War of Independence. This century, their ancestors have become aware of the illustrious history of the Scots in North America and at home through Clan societies and other organizations. Passenger and immigration lists show many early and influential immigrants bearing the name Foulis:

Foulis Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • James Foulis, who settled in Boston in 1684

Canada Foulis migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Foulis Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Robert Foulis, who settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1819
  • Thomas Foulis, who settled in Nova Scotia in 1839
  • George and Barbara McKay Foulis, who settled in Nova Scotia in 1852

Australia Foulis migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Foulis Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • George Foulis, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "John" in 1840 [3]
  • Elizabeth Foulis, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "John" in 1840 [3]
  • Harriet Logie Foulis, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "John" in 1840 [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Foulis (post 1700) +

  • James Foulis (1870-1928), Scottish born professional golfer
  • David J Foulis, American Professor in the department of mathematics & statistics at University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • Sir Ian Foulis, British educator and U. K. Diplomat
  • Robert Foulis (1796-1866), Canadian (Scottish born) civil engineer and painter, inventor of the world's first steam-operated fog alarm
  • Colonel Richard Foulis Roundell JP (b. 1872), of Gledston, Skipton-in-Craven, Yorkshire, English politician, Member of Parliament for Skipton

The Foulis 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: Mente manuque praesto
Motto Translation: Ready with heart and hand.

  1. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  2. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) JOHN from London 1840. Retrieved from on Facebook