Show ContentsJeayes History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Jeayes arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Jeayes family lived in Herefordshire. Their name, however, derives from the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, De Gai, Normandy. 1

Others sources claim the name is a nickname for ' the jay,' a chatterer, a smartly dressed person. 2 3 4

Early Origins of the Jeayes family

The surname Jeayes was first found in Herefordshire at Heath, with Jay, a township, in the parish of Leintwardine, union of Ludlow, hundred of Wigmore. 5 This small township had only 55 inhabitants in the late 1800s and comprises the hamlets of Heath and Jay. 6 7

One of the first records of the family was Gilber Jai (Gai) who was listed in the Pipe Rolls for Lincolnshire in 1202. A few years later, Tandy de Jay was listed in the Assize Rolls for Shropshire in 1221 and Walter le Jay was found in the Assize Rolls for Somerset in 1225. 8

In Somerset, William le Jay was listed there 1 Edward III (during the first year of King Edward III's reign.) 9

"Brian de Jay was the last Master of the English Knights Templars. He was the only Englishman of note slain at the battle of Falkirk in 1298 and his fellow Master of the Order in Scotland, fighting along with Jay, was also killed." 10

Early History of the Jeayes family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Jeayes research. Another 105 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1495, 1511, 1529, 1530, 1534, 1553, 1630, 1697, 1699, 1722, 1734 and 1790 are included under the topic Early Jeayes History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Jeayes Spelling Variations

A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Jay, Jaye, Jayes and others.

Early Notables of the Jeayes family

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was George Joye (also Joy and Jaye) (c. 1495 - 1553), a 16th-century Bible translator who produced the first printed translation of several books of the Old Testament into English (1530-1534), as well as the first English Primer (1529). Francis Joy (1697?-1790), was a printer, papermaker, and journalist, born at Belfast about 1697. "His family claims descent from Captain Thomas Joy, a follower of Arthur Chichester, Lord Chichester of Belfast. Francis Joy is said to have been originally a tailor; but the authority for this statement adds, with manifest exaggeration, that on setting up as...
Another 132 words (9 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Jeayes Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Jeayes family

Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Jeayes or a variant listed above: Thomas Jay settled in Virginia in 1635; William Jay settled in Barbados in 1663; Thomas Jay settled in Barbados in 1654.

  1. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Smith, Eldson Coles, New Dictionary of American Family Names New York: Harper & Row, 1956. Print
  4. Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  5. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  6. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  7. Barber, Henry, British Family Names London: Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, 1894. Print.
  8. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  9. 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.
  10. Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 2 of 3 on Facebook