Anglo-Saxon culture of Britain. It comes from when the family lived in Lewthwaite, a village in Cumberland. The place-name Lewthwaite is derived from the Old English words hlæw, which meant "burial mound," and thwaite, which meant "cleared land, pasture land." The name as a whole meant "burial mounds in the fields." The family name is derived from the name of the village.
Early Origins of the Leethwaite family
Cumberland 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 Leethwaite family
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Leethwaite Spelling Variations
Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate spelled their names differently as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Leethwaite have been found, including Lewthwaite, Laithwaite, Lawthwaite and others.
Early Notables of the Leethwaite family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Leethwaite family to the New World and Oceana
Families began migrating abroad in enormous numbers because of the political and religious discontent in England. Often faced with persecution and starvation in England, the possibilities of the New World attracted many English people. Although the ocean trips took many lives, those who did get to North America were instrumental in building the necessary groundwork for what would become for new powerful nations. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America bore the name Leethwaite, or a variant listed above: John Lewthwaite settled in Virginia in 1775.
The Leethwaite Motto
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Tendens ad aethera virtus
Motto Translation: Virtue aspirng toward heaven.
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