Hanshell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The Norman Conquest of England of 1066 added many new elements to the already vibrant culture. Among these were thousands of new names. The Hanshell name is derived from the Germanic personal name Ansell composed of the elements ans, which means god, and helm, which means protection or helmet. 
Early Origins of the Hanshell family
The surname Hanshell was first found in the English county of Kent where they were granted lands shortly after the Norman Conquest by King William the Conqueror in 1066 A.D. The family is believed to be descended from Pierre Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, Ansell being the abbreviation adopted by most branches of this noble Norman family who accompanied the Conqueror into England.
Saint Anselm of Aosta (c. 1033-1109), was a theologian, Abbot of Bec, and Archbishop of Canterbury. He was "born at or near Aosta about the year 1033, or two years before the death of Cnut, king of England, and two years before William the Conqueror became duke of Normandy. William the Conqueror received his death-wound in 1087. In the presence of Anselm we are told that he who to most men seemed harsh and terrible became so mild that bystanders looked on with amazement. " 
Early History of the Hanshell family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hanshell research. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1660, 1929 and 1689 are included under the topic Early Hanshell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Hanshell Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Ansell, Ancell, Ancelle, Anselm, Anselme, Anstrell and many more.
Early Notables of the Hanshell family (pre 1700)
Another 34 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hanshell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hanshell family
For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Hanshell or a variant listed above were: Edward Ansell, who settled in Nevis in 1663; Elizabeth Ansell, aged 17, who settled in Virginia in 1685; Claude Anselme, who arrived at New Orleans in 1719.
Related Stories +
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print