Gillian History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Gillian family

The surname Gillian was first found in Yorkshire at either Gilling East or Gilling West, two villages that both date back to the Domesday Book of 1086. Gilling West is thought to be older as there are records of it Saxon times as Ingetlingum. [1]

Gilling Abbey, a medieval Anglo-Saxon monastery is generally thought to have been located there, but some historians believe that it was located in Gilling East. The abbey was founded by Queen Eanflæd, the wife of King Oswiu of Northumbria (c. 612-670.)

"This is a place of great antiquity, and remarkable as the scene of the murder of Oswy, King of Deira, by his host, Oswin of Bernicia; in expiation of which crime, a monastery was founded on the spot by Queen Eanfleda; but not the slightest vestige of it can now be traced. Gilling Castle, situated in a fine park on the west of the village, was built by Alan, Earl of Richmond, to repel the frequent attacks of the Saxons and Danes for the recovery of their lost estates. " [2]

Again, both villages are listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 but with slightly different spellings: Ghellinge (Gilling East); and Ghellinges (Gilling West.) At that time, the lands of Gilling, were held by Count Alan. Literally, the place name means "settlement of the family or followers of a man called Gythla or Getla," from the Old English personal name + "-ingas." [1]

One of the first records of the name as a surname was Grim de Gilling who was listed in the Pipe Rolls for Yorkshire in 1198. A few years later, Gericus de Gilling was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls for Yorkshire in 1208 and later, John de Gilling was listed there in 1306. [3]

Early History of the Gillian family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gillian research. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1273, 1354, 1273, 1662, 1725 and 1712 are included under the topic Early Gillian History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Gillian Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Gilling, Gillings, Jilling, Jillings, Gillions, Gillion, Gellion, Jelling, Jellings, Gillian and many more.

Early Notables of the Gillian family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Isaac Gilling (1662?-1725), English Presbyterian minister, elder son of Richard Gilling, baker, born at Stogumber, Somersetshire. "Gilling, who was a scholarly and genial divine, kept a flourishing boarding-school at Newton Abbot, and got into...
Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gillian Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Gillian migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gillian Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Charle Gillian, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1738 [4]
  • Peter Gillian, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1752 [4]
  • Philip Gillian, who arrived in Frederick County, Maryland in 1794 [4]
Gillian Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • James Gillian, who landed in New York, NY in 1803 [4]
  • Patrick Gillian, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1808 [4]
  • William Gillian, who landed in New York, NY in 1815 [4]
  • Patrick Gillian to Philadelphia in 1843
  • Eduardo Gillian, who landed in Puerto Rico in 1854 [4]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

Canada Gillian migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gillian Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • John Gillian, who landed in Canada in 1821

Australia Gillian migration to Australia +

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

Gillian Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Joseph Gillian who was convicted in Salford, Manchester, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Clara" on 19th March 1857, arriving in Western Australia, Australia [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Gillian (post 1700) +

  • Sam Gillian, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Florida, 1924, 1952 [6]
  • G. W. Gillian, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Mississippi, 1888 [6]
  • Commander. Anne Gillian Sullivan M.V.O., British Assistant Private Secretary to The Princess Royal, was appointed the Member of the Royal Victorian Order on 8th June 2018 [7]
  • Barbara Gillian Briggs (b. 1934), Australian botanist who has more than 205 names of plants published or co-published by her
  • Mrs. Gillian Lake B.E.M., British recipient of the British Empire Medal on 8th June 2018, for services to the Voluntary Sector in Bedfordshire [8]
  • Ms. Gillian Shiela Squires M.B.E., British Detective Constable for West Midlands Police, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Policing [9]
  • Miss Gillian Mary Robinson M.B.E., British Consultant Nurse for Acquired Brain Injuries for Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Children’s Nursing [9]
  • Miss Gillian Pyatt M.B.E., British recipient of Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to the community in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire [9]
  • Ms. Gillian Murray M.B.E., British recipient of Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Charitable Fundraising [9]
  • Mrs. Gillian Mary Garlington M.B.E., British Senior Commercial Officer for Vehicle Support Team, was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire on 8th June 2018, for services to Military Procurement [9]


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  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)
  5. ^ Convict Records of Australia (Retrieved 11th February 2021, retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/clara)
  6. ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 23) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html
  7. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62507, 28 December 2018 | London Gazette, The Gazette, Dec. 2018, www.thegazette.co.uk/honours-lists
  8. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 31 October 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1
  9. ^ "Birthday and New Year Honours Lists (1940 to 2019)." Issue 62310, 4 July 2019 | London Gazette, The Gazette, June 2018, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/62310/supplement/B1


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