Likens History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The ancestors of the name Likens date back to the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the Likens family lived in one of the places that was called Leake.
Early Origins of the Likens family
The surname Likens was first found in either Lincolnshire, Yorkshire or Nottinghamshire which all have parishes names Leake. For some of the first listings of the family, we must look to Lincolnshire where the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 list the following: John de Lek; Roger de Leke; and Teobald de Lek as all living in that shire at that time.  Willie's Lyke-Wake is a Child Ballad, one of 305 traditional ballads from England and Scotland, and their American variants listed in the 1904 Houghton Mifflin edition. Lyke-Wake Dirge is a traditional English song that is thought to have originated in the Yorkshire area.
Early History of the Likens family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Likens research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1334, 1581, 1655, 1627, 1679, 1660, 1633, 1681, 1656, 1720, 1710, 1712, 1708 and 1715 are included under the topic Early Likens History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Likens Spelling Variations
It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, early Anglo-Saxon surnames like Likens are characterized by many spelling variations. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages, even literate people changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Likens include: Leake, Leak, Leek, Leeke, Leyke and others.
Early Notables of the Likens family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Francis Leke, 1st Earl of Scarsdale (1581-1655) fought for the Royalist cause in the English Civil War; Sir Francis Leke, 1st Baronet (1627-1679), an English soldier, administrator and Member of Parliament, High Sheriff of Nottinghamshire for 1660; William Leake, the father (died...
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Likens Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Likens family
Many English families tired of political and religious strife left Britain for the new colonies in North America. Although the trip itself offered no relief - conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and many travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute - these immigrants believed the opportunities that awaited them were worth the risks. Once in the colonies, many of the families did indeed prosper and, in turn, made significant contributions to the culture and economies of the growing colonies. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families has revealed a number of immigrants bearing the name Likens or a variant listed above: Augustine Leak, who came to Virginia in 1623; Winifred Leak, who arrived in Virginia in 1623; John Leak, who settled in Virginia in 1635; John Leak, who arrived in Barbados in 1658.
Contemporary Notables of the name Likens (post 1700) +
- Gene Elden Likens (b. 1935), American ecologist and a leading pioneer in the study of acid rain
- Jeff Likens (b. 1985), American professional ice hockey defenceman
- William M. Likens, American politician, Prohibition Candidate for U.S. Representative from Kentucky 2nd District, 1934; Union Candidate for U.S. Senator from Kentucky, 1936 
- W. E. Likens, American politician, Representative from Kentucky 4th District, 1896 
- Mary Greenleaf Likens, American Republican politician, Alternate Delegate to Republican National Convention from Pennsylvania, 1936 
- Darlene Likens, American Republican politician, Chair of Madison County Republican Party, 2011 
Related Stories +
The Likens 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: Agendo gnaviter
Motto Translation: By acting prudently.
- ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, January 8) . Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html