Grifith History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Grifith is from the rugged landscape of Wales. It is a Celtic name that was derived from the Welsh personal names Griffin, Gruffin, or Griffith. These were pet-forms of the Middle Welsh name Gruffudd, which was borne by many Welsh princes. The most prominent of these was Griffith ap Cynan, the King of North Wales and the founder of the first Royal tribe of Wales; he was the eldest son of Rhodri Mawr, the first recorded King of Wales.
Gruffydd ab Llewelyn (d. 1063), King of the Welsh, was the son of Llewelyn, the son of Seisyll. His father, who, according to a late authority, had married Angharad, daughter of Maredudd, son of Owain, a descendant of Hywel Dda (Gwentian Brut, sub an. 994), had been a vigorous ruler over Gwynedd. 
Gruffydd ab Rhydderch (d. 1055), king of the South Welsh, was the son of Rhydderch, son of lestin, who in 1023 had assumed the government of the south after the death of Llewelyn ab Seisyll, and was killed by the Irish in 1033. 
Gruffydd ab Cynan (1055?-1137), King of Gwynedd or North Wales, was, through his father Cynan, son of Iago, a descendant of Rhodri Mawr and of the ancient royal line of Gwynedd. 
Gruffydd ab Gwenwynwyn (d. 1286?), was Lord of Cyveiliog, Upper Powys, or, as it was called from his father, Powys Gwenwynwyn, was the son of Gwenwynwyn, the son of Owain Cyveiliog. 
Early Origins of the Grifith family
The surname Grifith was first found in Chirk, where Gruffyd ap Madog Vnyon was listed in 1392. 
Early History of the Grifith family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Grifith research. Another 248 words (18 lines of text) covering the years 1200, 1392, 1332, 1558, 1570, 1637, 1570, 1553, 1601, 1666, 1622, 1700, 1640, 1646, 1599, 1665, 1599, 1618, 1628, 1567 and are included under the topic Early Grifith History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Grifith Spelling Variations
Compared to other ancient cultures found in the British Isles, the number of Welsh surnames are relatively few, but there are an inordinately large number of spelling variations. These spelling variations began almost as soon as surname usage became common. People could not specify how to spell their own names leaving the specific recording up to the individual scribe or priest. Those recorders would then spell the names as they heard them, causing many different variations. Later, many Welsh names were recorded in English. This transliteration process was extremely imprecise since the Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh used many sounds the English language was not accustomed to. Finally, some variations occurred by the individual's design: a branch loyalty within a family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were indicated by spelling variations of one's name. The Grifith name over the years has been spelled Griffith, Griffiths, Gryffudd, Gryffuths and others.
Early Notables of the Grifith family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Mauirce Griffith, Griffyth or Griffyn (d. 1558), Bishop of Rochester, born in Wales, and educated in the south suburb of Oxford, among the Dominicans. 
Edmund Griffith (1570-1637), was Bishop of Bangor, born at Cevnamlwch in Lleyn, the promontory of Carnarvonshire, in 1570. 
John Griffith or Griffin ( fl. 1553), was a Welsh monk of the order of Cistercians in the, monastery of Halesowen in Worcestershire. 
George Griffith (1601-1666), was Welsh bishop of St...
Another 81 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Grifith Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Grifith family to Ireland
Some of the Grifith family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 62 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Grifith migration to the United States +
Many people from Wales joined the general migration to North America in the 19th and 20th centuries, searching for land, work, and freedom. Like the many other immigrants from the British Isles, they made a significant contribution to the development of Canada and the United States. The Welsh and their descendents added a rich cultural tradition to the newly developed towns, cities, and villages. An investigation of the immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Grifith:
Grifith Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- David Grifith, who landed in Maryland in 1676 
- John Grifith, who arrived in Maryland in 1676 
Related Stories +
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)