An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The birthplace of the surname Jagoe is Cornwall, a rugged peninsula in southwestern England that is noted for its strong Gaelic traditions. Though surnames became common during medieval times, English people were formerly known only by a single name. The way in which hereditary surnames were adopted in medieval England is fascinating. Under the Feudal System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Despite the fact that occupational surnames are rare among the Cornish People, they nevertheless sometimes adopted surnames derived from the type of work they did. The surname Jagoe was an occupational name for a the personal name James, which itself is a version of the ancient name Jacob, which means supplanter.
The surname Jagoe was first found in Cornwall, where there is some debate of the name's origins. One reference lists that the name was "from the Spanish Iago, which must have crossed over into Cornwall at some early period."  While another states "whether it derives from the Celtic-British Iago, and signifies James or from gago or jago, a spear and pledges for battle; however, the name was of ancient use in Britain; for Galfridus Monmuthensis tells us of a king named Jago, before Julius Caesar landed in Britain, that reigned twenty-five years, and is buried at York." 
Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Jago, Jagoe, Jagow, Jeago, Jego, Mac Ego and many more.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jagoe research. Another 129 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1221, 1684, 1724 and 1723 are included under the topic Early Jagoe History in all our PDF Extended History products.
Another 25 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jagoe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.
Some of the Jagoe family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 85 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products.
Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Jagoe family to immigrate North America:
Jagoe Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Jagoe Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
The Jagoe Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Jagoe Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.
This page was last modified on 7 October 2015 at 13:54.