Hilary is one of the thousands of new names that the Norman Conquest
of 1066 brought to England
. It comes from the medieval given name Hillary, which was originally derived from the Latin personal name Hilarius,
which means cheerful glad, happy
Early Origins of the Hilary family
The surname Hilary was first found in Norfolk
where they held a family seat
from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy
, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D. Hilary (c.1110-1169) was a medieval Bishop of Chichester,.
Early History of the Hilary family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hilary research.Another 201 words (14 lines of text) covering the year 1206 is included under the topic Early Hilary History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Hilary Spelling Variations
Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations
were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Hilary family name include Hillary, Hillery and others.
Early Notables of the Hilary family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Hilary Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hilary family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Hilary family to immigrate North America: Susan Hillery, who settled in Virginia in 1653; Nicholas Hillary, who settled in Nevis in 1654; William Hillary, who settled in Virginia in 1654; John Hillary, who settled in Charles Town in 1767.