The ancestors of the name Hovell are thought to have lived among the ancient Britons
, who inhabited in the hills and Moors
of present day Wales
. This particular surname was derived from the Welsh personal name
Hoel, which was originally derived from the Old Welsh
name Houel. This name was imported by Welsh
settlers into the English counties bordering Wales. However, in the eastern English counties, the name was brought by Breton
settlers; the Breton
forms of the name were Houuel, Huwel, Huwal, and Howael.
Early Origins of the Hovell family
The surname Hovell was first found in Monmouthshire
(Welsh: Sir Fynwy), where they held a family seat
from very ancient times, some say well before the Norman Conquest
and the arrival of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 A.D.
Early History of the Hovell family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Hovell research.Another 100 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1300, 1313, 1588, 1650, 1644, 1645, 1625, 1679, 1657, 1660, 1593, 1666 and 1 wo are included under the topic Early Hovell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Hovell Spelling Variations
surnames are relatively few in number, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations
. There are many factors that explain the preponderance of Welsh
variants, but the earliest is found during the Middle Ages when Welsh
surnames came into use. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, which often resulted in a single person's name being inconsistently recorded over his lifetime. The transliteration of Welsh
names into English also accounts for many of the spelling variations: the unique Brythonic Celtic
language of the Welsh
had many sounds the English language was incapable of accurately reproducing. It was also common for members of a same surname to change their names slightly, in order to signify a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations. For all of these reasons, the many spelling variations
of particular Welsh
names are very important. The surname Hovell has occasionally been spelled Howell, Howel, Hawell, Howels, Howells, Hovell and many more.
Early Notables of the Hovell family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Rt. Rev. Thomas Howell (1588-1650), Welsh
Bishop of Bristol from 1644 to 1645, born in Llangamarch, Brecknockshire; Francis Howell (1625-1679), Principal of Jesus College, Oxford from 1657 to 1660; and James Howell (c.1593-1666) famous writer who lead a colourful life... Another 50 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Hovell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Hovell family to Ireland
Some of the Hovell family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 49 words (4 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 Hovell family to the New World and Oceana
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many people from Wales
joined the general migration to North America in search of land, work, and freedom. These immigrants greatly contributed to the rapid development of the new nations of Canada and the United States. They also added a rich and lasting cultural heritage to their newly adopted societies. Investigation of immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Hovell: Owen Howel settled who in Virginia in 1635; David Howel settled in Barbados in 1654; Humphrey Howel settled in Virginia in 1698; Morgan Howel settled in Virginia in 1653.
Contemporary Notables of the name Hovell (post 1700)
- Sir Ellis Hovell Minns (1874-1953), British academic and archaeologist