Grenfield is a name of ancient Norman origin. It arrived in England
with the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Grenfield family lived in one of the many places named Grenville in Normandy
. Grenville was a seaport in Lower Normandy. There are also many places in Normandy
called Grainville, which is a place-name derived from the Germanic personal name
Guarin, which means guard, and the Old French word ville, which means village or settlement.
Early Origins of the Grenfield family
The surname Grenfield was first found in Buckinghamshire
, where they descend from Richard de Grenville who came with the Conqueror in the train of Walter Giffard, Earl of Longeville and Buckingham. He was son in law of Giffard. CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Cornwall and Devon is home to the family too as George Grenville of Stowe stated in 1711 in a letter to his nephew: "Your ancestors for at least five hundred years never made any alliances, male of female, out of the western counties: thus there is hardly a gentleman either in Cornwall or Devon, but has some of you blood, as you of theirs."
Early History of the Grenfield family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Grenfield research.Another 145 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1165, 1315, 1542, 1591, 1576, 1577, 1596, 1643, 1600, 1658, 1628, 1701, 1661, 1701, 1691, 1693, 1692, 1711, 1707, 1666, 1735 and 1712 are included under the topic Early Grenfield History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Grenfield Spelling Variations
Endless spelling variations
are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Granville, Granfield, Grandfield, Greenfield and others.
Early Notables of the Grenfield family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Richard Grenville (1542-1591), an English sailor from Bideford, Devon, sea captain and explorer, Sheriff of Cornwall
(1576-1577) and Sheriff of Cork; Sir Bevil Grenville (1596-1643), Royalist soldier in the English Civil War, and Member of Parliament; Sir Richard Grenville (Granville) (1600-1658), 1st... Another 109 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Grenfield Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Grenfield family to Ireland
Some of the Grenfield 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.
Migration of the Grenfield family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the political and religious persecution within England
at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Grenfield or a variant listed above: Xtop Granfield who settled in Virginia in 1650; Pierre Granville, who settled in Louisiana in 1719; and Catherine Granville, who arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1818..
The Grenfield 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: Frangas non flectes
Motto Translation: Thou may'st break, but shalt not bend me.