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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2015

Where did the Scottish Greek family come from? What is the Scottish Greek family crest and coat of arms? When did the Greek family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Greek family history?

The Greek family comes from the ancient Scottish Dalriadan clans of the mountainous west coast of Scotland. The name Greek is derived from the given name Gregor. The personal name Gregor, which is the Scottish form of Gregory, is derived from the Latin name "Gregorius" and from the Late Greek name "Gregorios," which mean alert, watchful, or vigilant.

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Spelling variations were extremely common in medieval names, since scribes from that era recorded names according to sound rather than a standard set of rules. Greek has appeared in various documents spelled Greer, Grier, Grear, Grerar, Greir, Greerr, Grearr and many more.

First found in Dumfriesshire (Gaelic: Siorrachd Dhn Phris), a Southern area, bordering on England that today forms part of the Dumfries and Galloway Council Area, where they held a family seat from very ancient times.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greek research. Another 245 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1542 and 1598 are included under the topic Early Greek History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Greek Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the Greek family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 164 words(12 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Dalriadan families proliferated in North America. Their descendants still populate many communities in the eastern parts of both the United States and Canada. Some settled in Canada as United Empire Loyalists, in the wake of the American War of Independence. Families on both sides of the border have recovered much of their heritage in the 20th century through Clan societies and highland games. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Greek or a variant listed above:

Greek Settlers in United States in the 17th Century


  • Andrew Greek, who arrived in Salisbury, Massachusetts in 1638

Greek Settlers in United States in the 18th Century


  • William Greek, who landed in New England in 1711

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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: Memor esto
Motto Translation: Be mindful.

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  1. Innes, Thomas and Learney. Socts Heraldry A Practical Handbook on the Historical Principles and Modern Application of the Art of Science. London: Oliver and Boyd, 1934. Print.
  2. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  3. Dorward, David. Scottish Surnames. Glasgow: Harper Collins, 1995. Print.
  4. Scarlett, James D. Tartan The Highland Textile. London: Shepheard-Walwyn, 1990. Print. (ISBN 0-85683-120-4).
  5. Moncrieffe, Sir Ian of That Ilk and David Hicks. The Highland Clans The Dynastic Origins, Cheifs and Background of the Clans. New York: C.N. Potter, 1968. Print.
  6. Moody David. Scottish Family History. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1994. Print. (ISBN 0806312688).
  7. Urquhart, Blair Edition. Tartans The New Compact Study Guide and Identifier. Secauccus, NJ: Chartwell Books, 1994. Print. (ISBN 0-7858-0050-6).
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Barrow, G.W.S Ed. Acts of Malcom IV 1153-65 Volume I Regesta Regum Scottorum 1153-1424. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1960. Print.
  10. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
  11. ...

The Greek Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Greek Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 27 October 2010 at 13:37.

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