Highlay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The surname Highlay is derived from the place name Highly, originally Huggalea or Hugelei in Old English. It is located in Shropshire, and was listed in the Domesday Book in 1086 as held by Ralph de Mortimer.
Early Origins of the Highlay family
The surname Highlay was first found in Shropshire at Highley, today a large village and civil parish on the west bank of the River Severn. The village dates back to the Domesday Book of 1086 when it was first listed as Hughlei  and literally meant "woodland clearing of a man called Hugga," from the Old English personal name + "leah."  As far as the surname, the first record of the name was found in 1246 where it was listed simply as "Huggele." 
Early History of the Highlay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Highlay research. Another 26 words (2 lines of text) covering the years 1327, 1377, 1573 and 1581 are included under the topic Early Highlay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Highlay Spelling Variations
Highlay has been spelled many different ways. Before English spelling became standardized over the last few hundred years, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. As the English language changed in the Middle Ages, absorbing pieces of Latin and French, as well as other languages, the spelling of people's names also changed considerably, even over a single lifetime. Spelling variants included: Highley, Highley, Higford, Hiley, Heighly, Hyley and others.
Early Notables of the Highlay family
More information is included under the topic Early Highlay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Highlay family
In an attempt to escape the chaos experienced in England, many English families boarded overcrowded and diseased ships sailing for the shores of North America and other British colonies. Those families hardy enough, and lucky enough, to make the passage intact were rewarded with land and a social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families became important contributors to the young colonies in which they settled. Early immigration and passenger lists have documented some of the first Highlays to arrive on North American shores: John Hiley, who was sent to a plantation in Virginia in 1665; Jno. Highly, who settled in Virginia in 1673; Julian Hiley, who immigrated to Maryland in 1678.
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: Dieu et mon Droit
Motto Translation: God and my Right.
- Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
- Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
- Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)