Show ContentsLeray History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

From the historical and enchanting region of France emerged a multitude of noble families, including the distinguished Leray family. Originally, the French people were known only by a single name. The process by which hereditary surnames were adopted in France is extremely interesting. Surnames evolved during the Middle Ages when people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Often they adopted names that were derived from nicknames. Nickname surnames were derived from an eke-name, or added name. They usually reflected the physical characteristics or attributes of the first person that used the name. The name Leray is a nickname type of surname for a person of regal bearing or a person who played a king in a local festival. Looking back further, we find the name Leray was derived from the Old French word "roy," meaning "king."

Early Origins of the Leray family

The surname Leray was first found in Burgundy (French: Bourgogne), an administrative and historical region of east-central France, where the family has held a family seat since ancient times.

Early History of the Leray family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Leray research. Another 148 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1098, 1306, 1330, 1470, 1533, 1570, 1583, 1645, 1726, and 1803 are included under the topic Early Leray History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Leray Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Ray, Rays, Raie, Raies, Raye, Rayes, Rée, Rées, Rait, Rey, Reys, Rei, Reis, Duray, Leray, De Laray, Laray, du Ray, de Ray, Delurey and many more.

Early Notables of the Leray family (pre 1700)

Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Leray Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Leray Ranking

In France, the name Leray is the 2,390th most popular surname with an estimated 2,500 - 3,000 people with that name. [1]

United States Leray migration to the United States +

Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Leray Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
  • Mr. Louis Leray, (b. 1874), aged 26, Cornish doctor travelling aboard the ship "St Louis" arriving at Ellis Island, New York on 8th September 1900 en route to New York, USA [2]

Australia Leray migration to Australia +

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

Leray Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • Mr. John Le Ray, British convict who was convicted in Jersey for 10 years, transported aboard the "Belgravia" on 4th April 1866, arriving in Western Australia [3]

Contemporary Notables of the name Leray (post 1700) +

  • Jean Leray (1906-1998), French mathematician, co-winner of the 1979 Wolf Prize in Mathematics

The Leray 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: Gracieuseté de Ray
Motto Translation: The graciousness of Ray

  2. Cornwall Online Parish Clerks. (Retrieved 3rd May 2018). Retrieved from
  3. Convict Records Voyages to Australia (Retrieved 30th September 2020). Retrieved from on Facebook