The present generation of the Kepas family is only the most recent to bear a name that dates back to the ancient Anglo-Saxon
culture of Britain. Their name comes from having lived in the village of Kippax, located in the county of Yorkshire.
Early Origins of the Kepas family
The surname Kepas was first found in Yorkshire
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor of Kippax, a large and important Norman village. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy
, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron
, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England
to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book
Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, Kippax, at the taking of the Domesday Book
was held by Ilbert de Lacy, a Norman Baron, who was at the Battle of Hastings. and who was granted 150 lordships in Yorkshire
in addition to the whole district known then as Blackburnshire in now Lancashire
. His holdings included Pontefract Castle in Yorkshire
. Conjecturally, the Kippax family surname descends from a relation of this Baron
who held Kippax at that time.
Early History of the Kepas family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Kepas research.Another 149 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1404, 1352, 1356, 1364, 1367, 1370, 1372, 1375, 1382, 1373, 1653 and 1722 are included under the topic Early Kepas History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Kepas Spelling Variations
Until the dictionary, an invention of only the last few hundred
years, the English language lacked any comprehensive system of spelling rules. Consequently, spelling variations
in names are frequently found in early Anglo-Saxon
and later Anglo-Norman documents. One person's name was often spelled several different ways over a lifetime. The recorded variations of Kepas include Kippax, Keepax, Kipax, Kepax, Kipas, Kypas, Kyppax, Kypax, Kipacks, Kepax, Kippacks, Cuppage, Cupage, Kippage, Kippash, Cuppash, Coppash, Cupacks and many more.
Early Notables of the Kepas family (pre 1700)
Distinguished members of the family include John Keppock (died 1404), Irish judge who held the offices of Lord Chief Justice of Ireland
and Chief Baron
of the Irish Exchequer, in England
in 1352, acted as counsel for the powerful Anglo-Irish Cusack family, became King's Serjeant (1356), became Lord Chief Baron
(1364)... Another 82 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Kepas Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Kepas family to Ireland
Some of the Kepas family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 78 words (6 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 Kepas family to the New World and Oceana
Thousands of English families boarded ships sailing to the New World in the hope of escaping the unrest found in England
at this time. Although the search for opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad took the lives of many because of the cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels, the opportunity perceived in the growing colonies of North America beckoned. Many of the settlers who survived the journey went on to make important contributions to the transplanted cultures of their adopted countries. The Kepas were among these contributors, for they have been located in early North American records: Peter Kippax settled in Virginia in 1699.