Macmorlen History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Macmorlen is of Anglo-Saxon origin and came from when a family lived on a moor, which is a tract of open, uncultivated ground which is usually grown over with heather and coarse grasses and has a poor, peaty soil. The surname Macmorlen literally means dweller by the moor-land. The surname Macmorlen belongs to the class of topographic surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees. [1]

Early Origins of the Macmorlen family

The surname Macmorlen was first found in Westmorland. The Mauley branch of the family claim Ugthorpe in the North Riding of Yorkshire as their ancient ancestral home. "This was an ancient demesne of the crown, and is styled in Domesday Book Ughetorp; the Mauleys became lords here at an early period, and from them the manor and estate descended by marriage to the Bigods, and afterwards to the Ratcliffes, by whom the whole was sold in parcels." [2]

"The first of this name we can trace is Peter de Mauley, a Poictevin, Baron of Mulegrave, and Lord of Doncaster, in Yorkshire. He appears to have been an adherent of King John, and to have acquired his English estates in marriage with Isabel, daughter and heir of Robert de Thurnham, whose wife was Joanna Fossard, heiress of Mulqrave, a descendant, probably, of the Domesday Nigel. Camden says, that "by marriage Peter de Mauley came to a great inheritance at Mulgrave, and that the estate was enjoyed by seven Peters, Lords de Malo-lacu." [3]

"The first mention of this name occurs shortly after the death of Richard I., when John, in order to clear his way to the throne, employed his esquire Peter de Mauley, a native of Poitou, to murder his nephew, Prince Arthur, for which service De Mauley received great remuneration in the West of England. In charters, the latinization of this name, De Malo Lacu, might be supposed to be no unapt allusion to the "bad lake or pool" of blood thus unrighteously shed by the founder of the race." [4]

As far as the Moreland (Morland) variant is concerned, we found the first record in Somerset: Edith de la Morland there in 1257. A few years later, Henry atte Morlonde was listed in the Subsidy Rolls of Sussex in 1296 and William de Morland in the Subsidy Rolls for Yorkshire in 1327. [5]

Early History of the Macmorlen family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Macmorlen research. Another 164 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1100, 1190, 1625, 1695, 1660, 1789 and are included under the topic Early Macmorlen History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Macmorlen Spelling Variations

Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Macmorlen family name include Morland, Morley, Moorland, Morthland, Morlay and many more.

Early Notables of the Macmorlen family (pre 1700)

Notables of this surname at this time include: Sir Samuel Morland (1625-1695), notable English academic, diplomat, spy, inventor and mathematician, made 1st Baronet Morland in 1660; the...
Another 26 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Macmorlen Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Macmorlen family to Ireland

Some of the Macmorlen family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 60 words (4 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 Macmorlen family

For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland, the Canadas, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Macmorlen surname or a spelling variation of the name include : Thomas Morland, who settled in Virginia in 1650; Ed Morland, who settled in Virginia in 1663; William Morland, who came to Boston in 1762; Eleanor Morland, a bonded passenger, who arrived in Virginia in 1774.



  1. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  5. ^ Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)


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