Hilly History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The name Hilly reached England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Hilly family lived near or on a hill. Hilly, which was extremely popular and widely distributed in England, is a classic example of an English polygenetic surname, which is a surname that was developed in a number of different locations and adopted by various families independently. The name was originally derived from the Old English hyll, which simply meant hill or dweller by the hill. 
Early Origins of the Hilly family
The surname Hilly was first found in Worcestershire, where one line is descended from the De Montes of Castlemorton in Worcestershire. The manor of Hillend in Castlemorton, Worcester was likely built on land held by Odo de Monte, or Hill, in 1238-9. Richard Hill of Castlemorton is mentioned in 1383 and John Hill of Castlemorton in 1408-9. John Hill died about 1623 holding a "messuage" at Hillend, which then passed to his son Thomas.
Other early records of the name include Gilbert del Hill, who was listed in the Pipe Rolls for Norfolk in 1191; William "attehil" (literally at the hill,) who was listed in 1260 in the Assize Rolls of Cornwall, and Simon Hille who was listed in the Rotuli Hundredorum for Worcestershire of 1273. 
Again in Cornwall, "the rectory of St. Keverne, which had been appropriated to the priory of Beaulieu in Hampshire, was afterward for many years in the family of Hill. About the middle of the last century, the great tithes were sold by this family to the occupiers of the several estates, for a term of 999 years." 
Scotland was another ancient homeland for the family. In this case, the first record was William de la Hyll, son of Waldeve son of Aldewyn, who resigned lands in Mydilham in 1271. William o' the Hill rendered homage to King Edward I of England in 1296 and in 1321 William de le Hille was received to the king of England's peace." It was Richard de Hulle (Hill), 'a varlette of Scotland,' who 'stikked and killed' Catarine Mortimer, 'a damoisel of London,' one of the inmates of the harem of David II in 1360." 
Early History of the Hilly family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hilly research. Another 138 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1484, 1484, 1549, 1601, 1602, 1271, 1597, 1727, 1589, 1657, 1628, 1629, 1605, 1667, 1672, 1699, 1692, 1695, 1694, 1734, 1735, 1685, 1750, 1736, 1749, 1711, 1663, 1797 and are included under the topic Early Hilly History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Hilly 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 Hilly family name include Hill, Hille, Hyll, Hills and others.
Early Notables of the Hilly family (pre 1700)
Distinguished members of the family include John Hill (1589-1657), an English merchant and politician, Member of Parliament for Dorchester (1628-1629); Roger Hill (1605-1667), of Poundsford, Somerset, an English judge and Member of Parliament; Michael Hill (1672-1699), an English politician, Member of Parliament for Saltash (1692-1695), appointed to the Privy Council of Ireland in 1694; James Hill (died 1734), an English master mason in Cheltenham...
Another 64 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hilly Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hilly family to Ireland
Some of the Hilly family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 81 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hilly family
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 Hilly family to immigrate North America: Edward Hill, who settled in Virginia in 1623; Joan Hill, who immigrated to St. Christopher in 1635; Henry Hill, who came to Bermuda in 1635; John Hill, who settled in Barbados in 1654.
Related Stories +
The Hilly Motto +
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 Translation: Advance.
- ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
- ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print
- ^ Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)