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Greslay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms



The Greslay surname was most likely originally created from a place name. There is a Gresley in Derbyshire and a Greasley in Nottinghamshire, both of which became habitation surnames. The two place names are in turn derived from the Old English "greosn," or "gravel," and "leah," meaning a "wood" or "clearing."

Early Origins of the Greslay family


The surname Greslay was first found in Derbyshire at Church Gresley or Castle Gresley which date back to c. 1125 when the were collectively listed as Gresele. Later years saw the place name evolve to Castelgresele in 1252 and later as Churchegreseleye in 1363. It is generally thought that the root Gresley was derived from the Old English word "greosn," which meant "gravel." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)

As far as the surname goes, the Topographer of 1789 states "In point of stationary antiquity hardly any families in the kingdom can compare with the Gresleys." They are the only family in the county that trace back "to the house of Drakelow; descended from Nigel, mentioned in the Domesday, called de Stafford, and said to have been a younger son of Roger de Toni, standard-bearer in Normandy, it was very soon after the Conquest established in Derbyshire, first at Gresley, and immediately afterwards at Drakelow, in the same parish." [2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.

One of the first records of the name was Sir Thomas de Grelly, who was knighted by King Edward 1st in 1306, and later Baron Gresly who was summoned to Parliament in 1308.

"The manor of 'Lulletune' [Lullington, Derbyshire] was in the Gresley family, in the reign of Edward I.; and the church was given by that family to the priory of Gresley, in the reign of Edward II." [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.


Early History of the Greslay family


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greslay research.
Another 305 words (22 lines of text) covering the years 1510, 1600, 1208, 1513, 1603, 1308, 1206, 1254, 1615 and 1678 are included under the topic Early Greslay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Greslay Spelling Variations


Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago, spelling variations of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Greslay include Greasley, Gresley, Grysley, Grisle, Grysely, Grisley, Grelly, Gresly, Greseley, Greiseley, Grelley and many more.

Early Notables of the Greslay family (pre 1700)


Another 30 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Greslay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Greslay family to the New World and Oceana


In England at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Greslays to arrive on North American shores: Jeffery Gresley, who arrived in Virginia in 1791; as well as Philip J Greaseley, who was naturalized in Fairfield Co. Ohio in 1833.

Greslay Family Crest Products



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Citations


  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  3. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.

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