Mannsell History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought much change to the island nation, including many immigrants with new names. Among these immigrants were the ancestors of the Mannsell family, who lived in Glamorgan. Their name, however, is a reference to the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, Le Mans, Normandy.

Early Origins of the Mannsell family

The surname Mannsell was first found in Glamorgan where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Oxwick. Sir Phillip de Maunsell accompanied William, Duke of Normandy at Hastings in the Conquest of England in 1066 A.D. He was succeeded by Henry Maunsell, who was father of Sir John Maunsell (c.1190-1265,) Chief Justice of England about 1130 A.D.

But, there is another version of this family's origins: "the curious poetical history of this family, preserved in 'Collectanea Topographica et Genealogica,' claims one 'Saher' there written 'Sier, the syer of us all,' as their ancestor: he is stated to have been the son of Ralph Maunsel, who was living in Buckinghamshire in the 14th of Henry II. (1167). " [1]

"A priory for Black canons was founded [at Bilsington, Kent], before the year 1253, by John Mansell, provost of Beverley, who dedicated it to the Blessed Virgin." [2]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 had several entries for the family using various early spellings: Thomas le Mansell in Buckinghamshire; Sampson le Maunse in Bedfordshire; Frater Maunsel in Norfolk; Maunsel (without surname) in Huntingdonshire; and Thomas Maunsel in Cambridgeshire. Over one hundred years later, the Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 had two entries: Johannes Mauncell; and Alicia Maunsell. [3] The last entry is very significant in that entries for women were indeed rare at this time.

Early History of the Mannsell family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mannsell research. Another 95 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1640, 1195, 1264, 1579, 1665, 1487, 1559, 1542, 1623, 1699, 1645, 1645 and 1677 are included under the topic Early Mannsell History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mannsell Spelling Variations

Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Mannsell were recorded, including Maunsell, Maunsel, Mansel, Mancel, Mauncell, Mauncel, Mannsell, Mannsel and many more.

Early Notables of the Mannsell family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Maunsell, or Mansel (circa 1195-1264), Provost of Beverley, English judge, and Secretary of State and Chancellor to King Henry III; Francis Mansell (1579-1665), Principal of Jesus College, Oxford; Sir Rice Mansel of Margam (1487-1559)...
Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mannsell Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Mannsell family to Ireland

Some of the Mannsell family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 43 words (3 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 Mannsell family

The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Mannsell arrived in North America very early: Henry Mancel who settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1811; John Mansel settled in Virginia in 1653; John Mansell settled in Virginia in 1650; Robert Mansell settled in New England in 1679.



The Mannsell 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: Honorantes me honorabo
Motto Translation: I will honour those who honour me.


  1. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)


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