The Norman Conquest
in 1066 added many new elements to an already vibrant culture. Among these were thousands of new names. The Horkesfith family lived at Axford, in the county of Wiltshire
. Checking further we found the name was derived from the Old English words aesc
meaning ash tree
Early Origins of the Horkesfith family
The surname Horkesfith was first found in Wiltshire
at Axford, a hamlet in the Kennet Valley which dates back to 1184 when it was listed as Axeford. The place name literally means "ford by the ash-trees," having derived from the Old English words "aesc" + "ford." CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
The family held a family seat
at Ramsbury from ancient times. Today, Ramsbury is a village and civil parish that includes the hamlet Axford. It was originally spelt Ramesberrie. Ramsbury at the time of the Domesday Book
was one of the larger holdings in the county of Wiltshire
and consisted of 10 Mills. It was held by the Bishop of Salisbury. It also included Axford's Farm, from which the Axford family name is conjecturally descended. Axford's Farm is noted for its water mill. Axford is also a village in Hampshire
, part of the civil parish of Nutley.
Early History of the Horkesfith family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Horkesfith research.Another 83 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 121 and 1216 are included under the topic Early Horkesfith History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Horkesfith Spelling Variations
Endless spelling variations
are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Axford, Acksford, Ackford, Hackford, Hacksford, Hawksford, Hawkford, Hawkesford and many more.
Early Notables of the Horkesfith family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Horkesfith Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Horkesfith family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the political and religious persecution within England
at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Horkesfith or a variant listed above: Ephraim Axford who settled in Virginia in 1670; Richard Axford who landed in Maryland in 1660; William Hawksford settled in Maryland in 1775.