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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016


The ancient roots of the Harrett family name are in the Anglo-Saxon culture. The name Harrett comes from when the family lived in Cheshire, where the family was found since the early Middle Ages. "Our antiquaries agree that Schirrard, who was resident in England, and held great possessions in the counties of Cheshire and Lancashire, temp. William Conqueror, is lineal ancestor to the present Earl of Harborough." [1]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
[2]CITATION[CLOSE]
Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
Lord Sherard, Baron of Leitrim, was created in 1627 for Sir William Sherard, of Stapleford, Leicestershire. He was known as the Earl of Harborough in 1719.

The name could have been Norman in origin as two sources note the French influence. The first source notes that Godefridus Sirart was listed in Normandy (1180-1195) and that Adam Scirart was later found in Dorset in the 13th century. Hugh Scherhare was found in Rutland in 1267. [3]CITATION[CLOSE]
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)
The second source claims the name that name was derived from the Old English word "scir" meaning "bright" and the French suffix "(h)ard." [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)


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The surname Harrett was first found in Cheshire at Thornton, where the family was first listed in the 13th century. William Sherard who died in 1304 appears to be the first listing of the surname. [5]CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
Another source claims that William Shirard listed in the Assize Rolls of Staffordshire in 1298 as the oldest listing of the family. This latter source goes on to note that Richard Schirard was also found in Staffordshire in 1323. [4]CITATION[CLOSE]
Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)

Another branch of the family was found at Stapleford in Leicestershire. This was home to Sir William Sherard, Lord Sherard, Baron of Leitrim created in 1627. His son, Bennet Sherard (1675-1732) would become the 1st Earl of Harborough. The church at Stapleford "was erected in 1783, by Robert, fourth Earl of Harborough and contains some fine monuments to the Sherard family, among which is one by Rysbrach, in memory of Bennet, the first earl." [6]CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
The Wills at Chester list: William Sherratt, of Moss Side, Manchester in 1588 and John Sherratt, of Church Lawton in 1604. [7]CITATION[CLOSE]
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

One relatively recent invention that did much to standardize English spelling was the printing press. However, before its invention even the most literate people recorded their names according to sound rather than spelling. The spelling variations under which the name Harrett has appeared include Sherard, Sherrard, Sherrat, Shirrard and others.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Harrett research. Another 187 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1304, 1670, 1588, 1640, 1621, 1700, 1675, 1732, 1675, 1732, 1680, 1750, 1623, 1695, 1660 and are included under the topic Early Harrett History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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Notables of the family at this time include William Sherard, 1st Baron Sherard of Stapleford, Leicestershire (1588-1640); Bennet Sherard, 2nd Baron Sherard (1621-1700); Bennet Sherard, 3rd Baron Sherard (1675-1732); Bennet...

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

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Some of the Harrett family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 107 words (8 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

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At this time, the shores of the New World beckoned many English families that felt that the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. Thousands left England at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. A great portion of these settlers never survived the journey and even a greater number arrived sick, starving, and without a penny. The survivors, however, were often greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. These English settlers made significant contributions to those colonies that would eventually become the United States and Canada. An examination of early immigration records and passenger ship lists revealed that people bearing the name Harrett arrived in North America very early:

Harrett Settlers in United States in the 17th Century

  • Mathew Harrett, who arrived in Virginia in 1661

Harrett Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Mary Harrett, aged 10, landed in Mobile, Ala in 1851
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  • Ruth V. Harrett, American politician, Prohibition Candidate for U.S. Representative from Michigan 14th District, 1958
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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: Hostis honori invidia
Motto Translation: Envy is an enemy to honour.

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Citations



  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Arthur, William , An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names. London: 1857. Print
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  5. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  6. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  7. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)

Other References

  1. Hinde, Thomas Ed. The Domesday Book England's Heritage Then and Now. Surrey: Colour Library Books, 1995. Print. (ISBN 1-85833-440-3).
  2. Reaney P.H and R.M. Wilson. A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X).
  3. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  4. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  5. Browning, Charles H. Americans of Royal Descent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  6. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  7. Shaw, William A. Knights of England A Complete Record from the Earliest Time to the Present Day of the Knights of all the Orders of Chivalry in England, Scotland, Ireland and Knights Bachelors 2 Volumes. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print. (ISBN 080630443X).
  8. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  9. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  11. ...

The Harrett Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Harrett Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 30 June 2016 at 11:17.

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