Show ContentsGoodwynn History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The earliest origins of the name Goodwynn date back to the time of the Anglo-Saxons. The name is derived from the baptismal name Godwin, which comes from the Old English name "Go-dwine," composed of the elements "go-d," meaning "good," and "wine," meaning "friend," collectively meaning "God friend." [1] [2]

Early Origins of the Goodwynn family

The surname Goodwynn was first found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from very early times. Godwin or Godwine (d. 1053) was the Earl of Wessex, chief adviser to King Canute, who held great wealth and lands in those times. His son Harold Godwinson (circa 1022-1066) was Harold II of England, the last Anglo-Saxon King of England, killed on October 14 1066 at the Battle of Hastings. Godwin, or Godwine was also the name of an 11th century Bishop of Lichfield, who died in 1020. [3]

Early rolls show the many spellings used throughout ancient Britain beginning with the Domesday Book of 1086 where we find Ailmar filius Goduini. [4] Years later in Yorkshire, we found Ricardus filius Godwini in the Assize Rolls of 1219. In Norfolk, the Pipe Rolls of 1177 list Walter Godwin as holding lands there at that time. In Cambridgeshire, the Feet of Fines for 1327 list Robert Gudwen and in the same year, William Goudwyne was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for Sussex. In Worcestershire, William Godewynes was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for 1327 and back in Yorkshire, we found John Gudwyn listed as a Freeman of York in 1388. [2]

Early History of the Goodwynn family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Goodwynn research. Another 165 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1177, 1219, 1273, 1296, 1327, 1500, 1517, 1562, 1590, 1594, 1597, 1600, 1603, 1605, 1633, 1641, 1654, 1655, 1659, 1660, 1662, 1665, 1670, 1674, 1677, 1680, 1695, 1719, 1730 and 1890 are included under the topic Early Goodwynn History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Goodwynn Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Goodwynn include Godwin, Goodwin, Goodin, Gooding, Goodings, Goodwyn, Godwyn, Godwine, Goodwine, Goddwin, Goddwyn, Goddywne and many more.

Early Notables of the Goodwynn family

Distinguished members of the family include Thomas Godwin (1517-1590), Bishop of Bath and Wells, born in 1517 at Oakingham, Berkshire, of poor parents; Francis Godwin (1562-1633), English divine, Bishop of Llandaff and of Hereford; John Goodwin (1594-1665), an English preacher, theologian and prolific author; John Goodwin (1603-1674), an English lawyer and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1641 and 1660, supporter of the Parliamentary cause in the English Civil War; Peter Gooden (died 1695), an English Roman Catholic priest; Thomas Godwin (died 1677), a Virginia politician and landowner, served in the House of Burgesses 1654-1655...
Another 98 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Goodwynn Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Goodwynn family to Ireland

Some of the Goodwynn family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 84 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Goodwynn migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Goodwynn or a variant listed above:

Goodwynn Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Miss Marie Goodwyn, aged 20, who arrived in Isla de Providencia in 1635 aboard the ship "Expectation" [5]

West Indies Goodwynn migration to West Indies +

The British first settled the British West Indies around 1604. They made many attempts but failed in some to establish settlements on the Islands including Saint Lucia and Grenada. By 1627 they had managed to establish settlements on St. Kitts (St. Christopher) and Barbados, but by 1641 the Spanish had moved in and destroyed some of these including those at Providence Island. The British continued to expand the settlements including setting the First Federation in the British West Indies by 1674; some of the islands include Barbados, Bermuda, Cayman Island, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica and Belize then known as British Honduras. By the 1960's many of the islands became independent after the West Indies Federation which existed from 1958 to 1962 failed due to internal political conflicts. After this a number of Eastern Caribbean islands formed a free association. [6]
Goodwynn Settlers in West Indies in the 17th Century
  • Miss Jane Goodwynn, (b. 1615), aged 20, British settler traveling aboard the ship "John" arriving in St Christopher (Saint Kitts) in 1635 [7]
  • Mr. Thomas Goodwynn, (b. 1605), aged 30, British settler traveling aboard the ship "Matthew" arriving in St Christopher (Saint Kitts) in 1635 [8]


The Goodwynn 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: Fide et virtute
Motto Translation: By fidelity and valour.


  1. Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  2. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  3. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  5. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's Retrieved January 6th 2023, retrieved from https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_West_Indies
  7. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's. Retrieved October 4th 2021 from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/daphne
  8. Pilgrim Ship's of 1600's (Retrieved October 4th 2021 from https://www.packrat-pro.com/ships/shiplist.htm


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