The ancestors of the bearers of the Heethfield family name are thought have lived in ancient Anglo-Saxon England
. They were first found on a heath, which is an area of level, uncultivated land with poor, coarse, undrained soil and rich deposits of peat or peaty humus. The surname Heethfield belongs to the class of topographic
surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees. The name was originally derived from the Old English words hæth,
which meant heath,
and the word feld,
which meant field.
Early Origins of the Heethfield family
The surname Heethfield was first found in Sussex
at Heathfield, a parish, in the union of Hailsham, hundred
of Hawkesborough, rape of Hastings. CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
The Feet of Fines of 1265 in Norfolk
list the first record of the name as Walter de Hethfeld. The Hundredorum Rolls
of 1273 list: Lynot de Hethefeld and Livesa de Hethfeld in Oxfordshire
Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
Heathfield is the scene of a severe battle in the year 635, between Cadwallo, and Edwin of Northumbria and his son Osfrid, on a spot since now named Slaughter Common.
Early History of the Heethfield family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Heethfield research.Another 133 words (10 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Heethfield History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Heethfield 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 Heethfield include Heathfield, Heatfield, Heethfield, Heathfeild, Heatfeild and many more.
Early Notables of the Heethfield family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Heethfield Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Heethfield family to the New World and Oceana
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 Heethfield or a variant listed above: John Heathfield settled in Barbados in 1685; along with his wife Margaret.