Isaac History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient Anglo-Saxon surname Isaac came from the baptismal name Isaac. The surname Isaac referred to the son of Isaac which belongs to the category of patronymic surnames. The name is derived from the Hebrew word "yishaq" meaning "laughter." [1]

The first record of the name in ancient Britain was found in the Domesday Book of 1086 where Isac was listed. [2] "This, as a baptismal name, was introduced about the time of the Conquest. One Isac appears as a chief tenant in Domesday Book." [3]

"Hundreds of English people bear one or other of these surnames in whose veins there flows not a single drop of Jewish blood." [4]

Early Origins of the Isaac family

The surname Isaac was first found in the Domesday Book of 1086. From this early entry, the name in both forename and surname forms became widespread with many early spellings. Willelmus (William) filius Ysac was listed in the Curia Regis Rolls for Essex in 1206; Henry Isaac was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Worcester in 1275, and Walter Isak in the Subsidy Rolls for Somerset in 1327. [5] [6]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 included: Robert filius Isaac, Lincolnshire; Isaac Judxus (the Jew), Yorkshire; Johannes Isaak, Norfolk; and John Ysac, Oxfordshire. [4]

In Scotland, "the name was not uncommon among ecclesiastics in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Isaac was prior of Scone from 1154 till 1162, and Magister Isaac was a cleric of St. Andrews, 1201. Ysaac of Brechin was a charter witness there c. 1178-98, and Ysaac de Banevin (Benvie) was one of a jury regarding the Kirketun of Aberbuthenoth, 1205." [7]

Early History of the Isaac family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Isaac research. Another 372 words (27 lines of text) covering the years 1086, 1300, 1358, 1665, 1653, 1693, 1214, 1242, 1260, 1231, 1358, 1405, 1447, 1203, 1448, 1569, 1662, 1671, 1460, 1581, 1654, 1581, 1626, 1645, 1624, 1698, 1624 and 1617 are included under the topic Early Isaac History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Isaac Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Isaac family name include Isaacs, Isaac, Isaack, Isaacson, Izacke and others.

Early Notables of the Isaac family (pre 1700)

Notables of the family at this time include John Isaac of Bekesbourne, Sheriff of Kent in 1460. Henry Isaacson (1581-1654), was an English theologian and chronologer, born in the parish of St. Catherine, Coleman Street, London, in September 1581, and was the eldest son of Richard Isaacson. "He appears to have been educated under the care of Bishop Lancelot Andrewes, by whom he was sent to Pembroke Hall...
Another 68 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Isaac Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Isaac Ranking

In the United States, the name Isaac is the 1,941st most popular surname with an estimated 17,409 people with that name. [8] However, in France, the name Isaac is ranked the 4,561st most popular surname with an estimated 1,500 - 2,000 people with that name. [9]


United States Isaac migration to the United States +

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Isaac surname or a spelling variation of the name include:

Isaac Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Rebecca Isaac, who settled in New England in 1634
  • Christ Isaac, who landed in Virginia in 1643 [10]
  • Stephen Isaac, who landed in Maryland in 1676 [10]
  • William Isaac, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1681 [10]
Isaac Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Mary Isaac, who arrived in Virginia in 1714 [10]
  • Eliza Isaac, who arrived in Virginia in 1714 [10]
  • Jos Isaac, aged 19, who landed in Virginia in 1773 [10]
  • William Isaac, who settled in Grenada in 1776
Isaac Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Jonas Isaac, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1800 [10]
  • Daniel Isaac, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1802 [10]
  • Wolff Isaac, who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1804 [10]
  • Anthony Isaac, who arrived in America in 1806 [10]
  • Robert and Lucy Isaac, who settled in Savannah in 1821
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Isaac Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Joe Isaac, who arrived in Arkansas in 1903 [10]

Canada Isaac migration to Canada +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Isaac Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
  • Abraham Isaac, who landed in Manitoba in 1874
  • Johan Isaac, who landed in Manitoba in 1874
  • Jacob Isaac, who landed in Manitoba in 1876

Australia Isaac migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Isaac Settlers in Australia in the 18th Century
  • Mr. Isaac Peyton, (Payten), (b. 1759), aged 38, English stone mason who was convicted in Middlesex, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Barwell" in September 1797, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1829 [11]
Isaac Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. Isaac Cribb, (Melsom), (b. 1786), aged 29, English convict who was convicted in Somerset, England for life for theft, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Isaac Gadman, (b. 1773), aged 42, English stone cutter who was convicted in Lancashire, England for life, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia, he died in 1846 [12]
  • Mr. Isaac Lancaster, English blacksmith who was convicted in Cumberland, England for 7 years for stealing, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Isaac Slater, British convict who was convicted in Coria, Caceres, Spain for life, transported aboard the "Baring" in April 1815, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • Mr. Isaac Savery, English convict who was convicted in Lancaster, Lancashire, England for 7 years, transported aboard the "Baring" in December 1818, arriving in New South Wales, Australia [12]
  • ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

New Zealand Isaac migration to New Zealand +

Emigration to New Zealand followed in the footsteps of the European explorers, such as Captain Cook (1769-70): first came sealers, whalers, missionaries, and traders. By 1838, the British New Zealand Company had begun buying land from the Maori tribes, and selling it to settlers, and, after the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840, many British families set out on the arduous six month journey from Britain to Aotearoa to start a new life. Early immigrants include:

Isaac Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
  • Francis Isaac, aged 27, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Oriental" in 1840
  • Mary Isaac, aged 29, who arrived in Port Nicholson aboard the ship "Oriental" in 1840
  • Mr. Francis Isaac, (b. 1812), aged 27, British settler travelling from London aboard the ship "Oriental" arriving in Port Nicholson, Wellington, New Zealand on 31st January 1840 [13]
  • Mrs. Isaac, (b. 1810), aged 29, British settler travelling from London with 2 children aboard the ship "Oriental" arriving in Port Nicholson, Wellington, New Zealand on 31st January 1840 [13]
  • Emma Isaac, aged 22, who arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship "Arawa" in 1884

Contemporary Notables of the name Isaac (post 1700) +

  • Christopher Dwight Isaac (1959-2020), American professonal CFL football quarterback with the Ottawa Rough Riders (1982-1983)
  • Robert Michael "Bob" Isaac (1928-2008), American politician, Mayor of Colorado Springs (1979-1997), the longest-serving mayor of Colorado Springs
  • Rhys Llywelyn Isaac (1937-2010), South African-born, American historian, twin brother of Glynn Isaac
  • Oscar Isaac (b. 1980), born Óscar Isaac Hernández, Guatemalan Golden Globe Award nominated actor, known for his role sin The Nativity Story (2006), All About the Benjamins (2002) and Body of Lies (2008)
  • Bobby Isaac (1932-1977), American racing driver, former NASCAR Grand National champion (1970)
  • John Edmund Valentine Isaac DSO (1880-1915), English cricketer who played the 1900s
  • Bryan Isaac, English professional ballroom dancer
  • Arthur Whitmore Isaac (1873-1916), English cricketer who played from 1899 to 1913
  • Joseph Isaac, Australian economist
  • Glynn Llywelyn Isaac (1937-1985), South African archaeologist, a specialist in the very early prehistory of Africa
  • ... (Another 1 notables are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)

HMS Cornwall
  • Paul William Isaac, British Surgeon Lieutenant aboard the HMS Cornwall (1942) when she was struck by air bombers and sunk; he survived the sinking [14]
HMS Repulse
  • Mr. George F T Isaac, British Able Bodied Seaman, who sailed into battle on the HMS Repulse (1941) and survived the sinking [15]


  1. ^ Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  2. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  3. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  5. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  6. ^ Dickinson, F.H., Kirby's Quest for Somerset of 16th of Edward the 3rd London: Harrison and Sons, Printers in Ordinary to Her Majesty, St, Martin's Lane, 1889. Print.
  7. ^ 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)
  8. ^ https://namecensus.com/most_common_surnames.htm
  9. ^ http://www.journaldesfemmes.com/nom-de-famille/nom/
  10. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
  11. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 29th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/barwell
  12. ^ Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 16th September 2020). Retrieved from https://convictrecords.com.au/ships/baring
  13. ^ New Zealand Yesteryears Passenger Lists 1800 to 1900 (Retrieved 26th March 2019). Retrieved from http://www.yesteryears.co.nz/shipping/passlist.html
  14. ^ Force Z Survivors Crew List HMS Cornwall (Retrieved 2018, February 13th) - Retrieved from https://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listcornwallcrew.html#A
  15. ^ HMS Repulse Crew members. (Retrieved 2014, April 9) . Retrieved from http://www.forcez-survivors.org.uk/biographies/listrepulsecrew.html


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