Marais History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
The Marais surname is a habitational name derived from any of several places named with the Old French words "mareis" or "maresc", meaning "marsh".
Early Origins of the Marais family
The surname Marais was first found in Cambray, Normandy (French: Normandie), the former Duchy of Normandy, where ancestors of the family belonged to the house of Bousis. According to Arthurian legend, Sir Hector de Maris (or Ector de Maris), was a Knight of the Round Table, younger half-brother of Lancelot and the natural son of King Ban of Benwick and the Lady de Maris.
René Desmarais, son of Jean and Jeanne (née Brassard), travelled from Poitou, France to the New World in the 17th century. He married Jeanne Blondeau at Trois-Rivières, Quebec on 16th November 1671. 
Early History of the Marais family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Marais research. Another 297 words (21 lines of text) covering the years 1096, 1113, 1108, 1429, 1360, 1682, 1519, 1567, 1518, 1604, 1696, 1500, 1696, 1108, 1595, 1676, 1648, 1721, 1604, 1686, 1648, 1721, 1662, 1714, 1647, 1709, 1656 and 1728 are included under the topic Early Marais History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Marais Spelling Variations
Spelling variations of this family name include: Desmarais, Demarais, Des Marais, Desmarets, Desmarés, Desmareys, Desmaray, Desmaraie, Desmarest, Desmaret, Desmarets, Démarais, Démarets, Démarey, Démareys, Démarés, Démarey, Démaré, Démarés, Démarée, Démarées, Démaraie, Démaray, Maret, Marest, Marais, Mareys, Marets, Marest, Mares, Marays, Marrey, Mareys, Marées, Des Marest, Des Maret, Des Marets, Des Marez, De Marest, Du Marest, Du Marais, Du Marrey, Du Mareys, Du Mares, Du Marays, Du Mareys, Du Marées and many more.
Early Notables of the Marais family (pre 1700)
Notable amongst the family in this period was Baldwin I, Lord of Marets in the 11th century, as well as Hugues Maret, the first Priest at the Benedictine Abbey of Valbenoite, in 1108. Jean Desmarets (1595-1676), Sieur de (Lord of) Saint-Sorlin was the author of many volumes of poetry and critical works, as well as the first chancellor and co-founder of the Académie Française; Nicolas Desmarets, known as the Marquis de Maillebois (1648-1721)...
Another 72 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Marais Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In France, the name Marais is the 668th most popular surname with an estimated 7,114 people with that name.  However, in South Africa, the name Marais is ranked the 120th most popular surname with an estimated 46,936 people with that name. 
Marais migration to the United States +
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Marais Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
- Francois Marais, aged 48, who landed in Louisiana in 1719 
Contemporary Notables of the name Marais (post 1700) +
- Philip H. Des Marais, American Democratic Party politician, Alternate Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Louisiana, 1956 
- Jean Marais (1913-1998), French actor
- Roland Marais (1685-1750), French Baroque composer
- Marin Marais (1656-1728), French composer and viola player
- Eugène Marais (1871-1936), South African lawyer, naturalist, poet and writer
- Peter Marais (b. 1948), South African politician
- Lejeanne Marais (b. 1989), South African figure skater
- Josef Marais (1905-1978), South African singer
- Marais Erasmus (b. 1964), South African cricket umpire and member of the ICC Elite Umpire Panel
Related Stories +
- ^ Olivier, Reginald L. Your Ancient Canadian Family Ties. Logan: The Everton Publishers, Inc., P.O. Box 368, 1972. Print
- ^ http://www.journaldesfemmes.com/nom-de-famille/nom/
- ^ https://forebears.io/south-africa/surnames
- ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
- ^ The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2017, April 12) Philip Marais. Retrieved from http://politicalgraveyard.com/alpha/index.html