The name Godfree has a rich and ancient history. It is an Anglo-Saxon
name that was originally derived from the baptismal name for the son of Godfrey.
Baptismal names were a form of patronymic
surnames, and came from either the religious
given name traditions. In this case, the patronym
was adopted from the personal name
of the bearers father.
Early Origins of the Godfree family
The surname Godfree was first found in Kent
. One of the first records of the name was Henricus filius
Godefrid who was listed in the Pipe Rolls
taken during the reign of King Henry II (1154-1189.) CITATION[CLOSE]
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
It is generally believed that he was related to William Godefridus of Normandy
listed in a census there taken 1180-1198. CITATION[CLOSE]
The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
However, the Godfrey variant had many early references including Godfrey the Bearded (c.?997-1069); and his son, Godfrey IV, Duke of Lower Lorraine
(died 1706), known as the Hunchback who was assassinated in Vlaardingen; Godfrey of Bouillon (c.
1060-1100), a medieval Frankish knight, one of the leaders of the First Crusade, Godfrey of Cambrai, the prior of Winchester Abbey from 1082 until his death in 1107; and Godfrey (died 1088), medieval Bishop of Chichester. " In the churchyard [of Woodford, Essex] is a splendid Corinthian column of marble, about forty feet in height, erected to the memory of the Godfrey family, which flourished many years in Kent; also a tomb with a column entirely covered with ivy, of picturesque appearance; and a remarkably fine old yew-tree." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Godfree family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Godfree research.Another 197 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1666, 1273, 1622, 1678, 1642, 1631, 1648, 1714, 1641, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Godfree History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Godfree Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred
years ago, spelling variations
of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, French and other languages became incorporated into English through the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Godfree include Godfrey, Godfry, Godfrie, Godfree, Godfery, Godkin and many more.
Early Notables of the Godfree family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir Edmund Berry Godfrey (1622-1678), English politician, London woodmonger and Justice of the Peace, his unsolved murder was one of the most celebrated historical mysteries; Richard Godfrey... Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Godfree Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Godfree family to Ireland
Some of the Godfree family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 229 words (16 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Godfree family to the New World and Oceana
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Godfree Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
- John Godfree, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Harry Lorrequer" in 1849 CITATION[CLOSE]
State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) HARRY LORREQUER 1849. Retrieved from http://www.slsa.sa.gov.au/BSA/1849HarryLorrequer.htm
The Godfree 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: Deus et libertas
Motto Translation: God and liberty.