Gawant History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The Gawant surname is a Brythonic Celtic name that comes from the personal name Gawen. This name was popular due to the exploits traditionally attributed to Sir Gawaine, a nephew of King Arthur who was a native of the English/Welsh border area and was famed for his exploits as a Knight of the Round Table. Sir Gawaine was the hero of the battle with the giant Rhyence: 'That Gawain with his olde eurtesie.' Chaucer, The Squire's Tale. Independently, the surname Gawant is native to the Isle of Man, and as a Manx name, it is an occupational surname derived from Mac-an-Gabhain, which means the smith's son.
Early Origins of the Gawant family
The surname Gawant was first found in Wiltshire, where "the Gawens of Norrington, in the parish of Alvideston, continued in that place four hundred fifty and odd yeares. On the south downe of the farme of Broad Chalke is a little barrow called Gawen's Barrow, which must bee before ecclesiastical lawes were established." 
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list Goselena filius Gawyne in Cambridgeshire and the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 list Peter Gowyn and Emma Gawyn. 
Early History of the Gawant family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gawant research. Another 81 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1612, 1684, 1612 and 1642 are included under the topic Early Gawant History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Gawant Spelling Variations
The Welsh have an extremely large amount of spelling variations of their native surnames to their credit. It was up to the priest or the scribe taking the official records to determine how the spoken name was to be made literal. As time progressed, the old Brythonic names of Wales were recorded in English, which was especially problematic since the English language had extreme difficulty recording the highly inflected sounds of Cymraeg. Spelling variations were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The spelling variations of the name Gawant have included Gawen, Gaven, Gavin and others.
Early Notables of the Gawant family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Thomas Gawen (1612-1684), English Catholic writer, son of Thomas Gawen, a minister of Bristol, born at Marshfield, Gloucestershire, in 1612. After taking orders he travelled abroad...
Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gawant Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gawant family
Many Welsh families joined their Scottish and Irish neighbors during the late 1800s and early 1900s in seeking refuge in North America. Like the Irish and Scottish, many Welsh anxiously awaited the work, freedom, and opportunities that they believed lay in North America. Those who did journey over to the United States and what became known as Canada often realized those dreams, but only through much toil and perseverance. Whenever and however these Welsh immigrants arrived in North America, they were instrumental in the creation of the industry, commerce, and cultural heritage within those two developing nations. In the immigration and passenger lists a number of early immigrants bearing the name Gawant were found: James, John, Michael, Thomas Gavin arrived in Philadelphia between 1775 and 1850; Thomas Gavin settled in Maryland in 1774; John MacGavin arrived in Philadelphia in 1844..
Related Stories +
- ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)