Germane History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The proud Norman name of Germane was developed in England soon after Norman Conquest of England in 1066. It was name for a person of German descent, or a person who was associated with that country through trade or other means. Another derivation of the name suggests that it derives from the Old French given name Germain. This name was borne by a popular French saint from the 5th century, and also meant of the same stock, or related to.

Germanus (378?-448), was "Bishop of Auxerre, and missionary to Britain, son of noble parents whose names are given as Rusticus and Germanilla, was born at Auxerre about 378, and after attending schools in Gaul went to study at Rome. " [1]

Germane is a classic example of an polygenetic surname, which is a surname that was developed in a number of different locations and adopted by various families independently.

Early Origins of the Germane family

The surname Germane was first found in Essex where Jerman filius Willelmi was listed in the Feet of Fines for 1248. [2] However, Germanus was earlier listed in the Domesday Book of 1086. [3]

Early History of the Germane family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Germane research. Another 141 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1086, 1250, 1248, 1279, 1318, 1402, 1377, 1397, 1650, 1718, 1680, 1769 and 1738 are included under the topic Early Germane History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Germane Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Germane were recorded, including German, Germans, Jermain, Jarman and others.

Early Notables of the Germane family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Robert German (died 1402), English politician, Member (MP) of the Parliament of England for Nottingham from 1377 to 1397. Sir John Germain, 1st Baronet (1650-1718), was a British soldier and politician, thought to have been an illegitimate half-brother of William III of England. "His mother, who was very handsome, is stated to have been that prince's mistress, and Germain is said to have assumed 'as his seal and armorial bearing' a red cross, implying pretensions to exalted...
Another 84 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Germane Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Germane family to Ireland

Some of the Germane 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 Germane migration to the United States +

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Germane arrived in North America very early:

Germane Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Catherine Elizabeth Germane, who settled in Pennsylvania in 1772
  • Catherine Eliza Germane, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1772 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Germane (post 1700) +

  • Germane L. Crowell (b. 1976), former American football wide receiver


  1. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  2. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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