Fryman History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The surname Fryman is a ancient Anglo-Saxon name whose history dates back to the days before the Norman Conquest of 1066. The name is derived from "freomann" or "frigmann," Old English words and personal names meaning "free-born man." [1] [2] [3]

We did find this interesting take on the origin of the name: "In the early days of feudalism two neighbours bearing some common Christian name would be distinguished by epithets denoting their respective conditions, as John le Freeman and John le Bonde, and these epithets would often become family names. In the Hundredorum Rolls we have not only many Le Fremans, but also one Matilda Frewoman, and an Agnes Frewif, or free wife, probably the wife of a bondman." [4]

Early Origins of the Fryman family

The surname Fryman was first found in the county of Essex, where it was borne as a personal name by Freman Sceil in 1188. The first recorded instance of Fryman as a surname appeared shortly thereafter; William Freman was listed in the Feet of Fines of Norfolk in 1196. A few years later, Reginald le Freman was found in the Assize Rolls for Worcestershire in 1221 and Osbert Friman was listed in the Liber Feodorum [5] for Bedfordshire in 1240. As a forename, Freman Sceil was listed in the Pipe Rolls for Essex in 1188. [6]

Later the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed: John le Freman, Huntingdonshire; and Geoffrey le Freman, Buckinghamshire. [7]

"This name is confined to the centre of England and to the adjoining eastern and western counties. Two lines drawn west from the Wash and the Thames to the Welsh border will roughly include the principal area of this name, which for au area of its size is remarkably well defined. It is at present most numerous in Suffolk and in Worcester; and likely enough the Freemans of the west and of the east may owe their surname to different events in the history of our country. Not improbably "Freeman" early appeared as an appellation in the counties bordering Wales, since we learn that in the 10th century the Welsh captives, reduced to slavery, were so numerous in the English shires on the border that the proportion of slaves to freemen would seem to have been unusually large. " [8]

The first record of the family in Scotland was Jacob Freman del counte de Pebbles who rendered homage to King Edward I of England in 1296. [9]

Early History of the Fryman family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Fryman research. Another 88 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1196, 1627, 1630, 1645, 1611, 1575, 1670, 1720, 1610, 1655, 1646, 1710, 1667, 1723, 1821, 1794, 1655, 1680, and are included under the topic Early Fryman History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Fryman Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Fryman are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. The variations of the name Fryman include: Freeman, Fryman, Friman and others.

Early Notables of the Fryman family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Francis Freeman (c.1645), a British religious writer; and John Freeman ( fl. 1611), an English divine, matriculated in the University of Cambridge as a sizar of Trinity College, 26 Nov. 1575. [10] John Freeman (fl. 1670-1720), was an English painter who had some repute as a history painter in the reign of Charles II; Sir Ralph Freeman (fl. 1610-1655), was English civilian and dramatist, who was probably the son of Martin Freeman. Richard Freeman (1646-1710) was...
Another 80 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Fryman Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Fryman family to Ireland

Some of the Fryman family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 150 words (11 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Fryman migration to the United States +

Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Fryman or a variant listed above:

Fryman Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Egbert Jenner Fryman, aged 36, who arrived in America from Rye, Sussex, England, in 1904
  • Mrs. Leah Fryman, aged 22, who arrived in America from London, England, in 1904
  • Flora Constance Fryman, aged 33, who arrived in America from Rye, Sussex, England, in 1904
  • Sarah Fryman, aged 13, who arrived in America from London, England, in 1906
  • Simon Fryman, aged 19, who arrived in America from London, England, in 1906
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Contemporary Notables of the name Fryman (post 1700) +

  • David Travis Fryman (b. 1969), American Major League Baseball third baseman and shortstop who played from 1990 to 2002, five-time All-Star, recipient of the Gold Glove Award (2000) and the Silver Slugger Award (1992)
  • Pamela Fryman, American two-time Daytime Emmy Award winning director and producer, best known for directing the series How I Met Your Mother
  • Woodrow Thompson Fryman (1940-2011), American Major League Baseball pitcher who played from 1966 to 1983, two-time National League All-Star


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  3. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  4. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. ^ Testa de Nevill or "Liber Feodorum" or "Book of Fees," thought to have been written by Ralph de Nevill, for King John (1199–1216)
  6. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  7. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  8. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  9. ^ 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)
  10. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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