Greve History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The generations and branches of the Greve family share a name that has its roots in the ancient Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. The name Greve comes from the baptismal name Reeve where as a surname it refers to son of Reeve. In Old English, patronyms were formed by adding a variety of suffixes to personal names, which changed over time and from place to place. For example, after the Norman Conquest, sunu and sune, which meant son, were the most common patronymic suffixes. In the 12th and 13th centuries, the most common patronymic names included the word filius, which meant son. By the 14th century, the suffix son had replaced these earlier versions. Surnames that were formed with filius or son were more common in the north of England and it was here that the number of individuals without surnames was greatest at this time. The surname Greve also referred to manager or overseer as an occupational surname.
Alternatively, the name could have originally been a Norman name descending from Walter de Grava (De la Grave) which was found in Normandy before the Conquest and still there as late as 1198. 
Early Origins of the Greve family
The surname Greve was first found in Gloucestershire where Osbert de Grava or De la Grave was found in 1203. From this first entry, the Graveses of Mickleton, Gloucester, ancestors of the gallant admiral Lord Graves, and the Baronets Graves-Saule descend. 
The source "Testa de Nevill, sive Liber Feodorum" lists Geoffrey de la Grave, Gloucestershire, ( temp. Henry III-Edward I) and the "Placita de Quo Warranto" lists Sibilla de la Grave, Gloucestershire, 20 Edward I (during the 20th year of Edward I's reign.)
The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included the following early listings of the family: Edith de la Grava, Oxfordshire; Henry de la Grave, Oxfordshire; Hugh de la Grave, Somerset; and John de la Grave, Wiltshire. 
"Greaves, which is a characteristic name of the midland counties, has long been a Worcestershire name. The old family of Greves held some position in the county." 
The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 listed the following as holding lands there at that time: Johannes Grave; Adam Grayf; Johanna Grayf; and Robertus Grayff. 
Early History of the Greve family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Greve research. Another 138 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1669, 1784, 1600, 1600, 1607, 1604, 1612, 1676, 1602, 1652, 1608, 1680, 1605, 1673, 1677, 1729, 1677, 1715 and 1804 are included under the topic Early Greve History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Greve 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 Greve include Grieves, Grieve, Greve, Greves, Greeves, Greaves, Greave, Griveson, Greaveson, Greavson and many more.
Early Notables of the Greve family (pre 1700)
Notables of the family at this time include Thomas Greaves ( fl. 1604), English musical composer and lutenist to Sir Henry Pierrepont, belonging probably to the Derbyshire family of Greaves; Thomas Greaves (1612-1676), an English Orientalist, a contributor to the London Polyglot; John Greaves (1602-1652), an English mathematician, astronomer and antiquary, eldest son. of the Rev. John Greaves, rector of Colemore, near Alresford in Hampshire; Sir Edward Greaves, 1st Baronet (1608-1680), an English physician...
Another 72 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Greve Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Greve family to Ireland
Some of the Greve family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Greve 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 Greve or a variant listed above:
Greve Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
- Ann, Henry, John and Mary Greve, who settled in Philadelphia between 1796 and 1856
Contemporary Notables of the name Greve (post 1700) +
- Orville W. Greve, American Democrat politician, Candidate for Michigan State House of Representatives 49th District, 1972 
- Carsten Greve (b. 1965), Danish professor at Copenhagen Business School
- Arent Greve (1733-1808), Norwegian painter and goldsmith
- Mathias Sigwardt Greve (1832-1912), Norwegian physician, director of Rikshospitalet from 1883 to 1911
- Adolf Bredo Stabell Greve (1871-1931), Norwegian architect, son of Mathias Greve
- Georg C. F. Greve (b. 1973), German software developer, founder of the Free Software Foundation Europe, recipient of the Cross of Merit on ribbon of the Federal Republic of Germany in 2010
- Henrik Greve Hille (1881-1946), Norwegian clergyman, Bishop of the Diocese of Hamar from 1934 to 1942
Related Stories +
The Greve 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: Spes mea in Deo
Motto Translation: My hope is in God.
- ^ 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)
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2015, October 14) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html