Show ContentsMavor History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Mavor family

The surname Mavor was first found in Somerset, where John le Mawere, le Mowere was listed in the Assize Rolls of 1225. Later, Robert le Mouer was listed in Kent in 1263 and John le Mawer was found in the Subsidy Rolls for Yorkshire in 1297. In Suffolk, the first record there was Roger le Mower who was listed in 1305 and in Cumberland Alan Mawer was listed in the Subsidy Rolls for 1322. [1]

In the north of England, the "aw" spelling was most common. [2] [1] The name Mavor, like many surnames, is most likely occupational in origin; in other words, the first bearer of the name took it because it pertained to his profession.

According to legend, an "Anglo-Saxon, soon after the Norman Conquest, acquired this name (Leofric the Mower) from his having overcome twenty men with a scythe." [3]

The name comes from the Old English word "mawan," meaning "to mow," so the first bearer of the name was most likely one who mowed for a living. The possibility also exists that there is another English Mower family whose name is a variation on the Irish name Moore, but this line of ancestry is rare, if it exists at all.

"Mawer was the name of a family that held much property in Winthorpe [Nottinghamshire] and in other places in the county 300 years ago. There were Mawers in Ereiston in the reign of Elizabeth I." [4]

In Scotland, the name is derived from the "Gaelic maor, a subordinate officer in various capacities, a steward. The Scots pronunciation is Mawr." [5] Here the name also includes the variants Maver and Mavor. "Mavor is a Speyside surname. Wille Mawar and Johnne Mawar were declared innocent of any art in the detention of King James III in Edinburgh Castle, 1482. Walter Mawer witnessed a bond of caution in 1564. John Mawar in Urquhart was warned to appear before the Lord Regent, 1574, and David Mawer of the Loch (Lochs near Urquhart) was slain by some Inneses, 1576. " [5]

Early History of the Mavor family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mavor research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1225, 1263 and 1332 are included under the topic Early Mavor History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Mavor Spelling Variations

Spelling variations of this family name include: Mower, Mawer, Mowery, Mawery, Mawere, Mowere and others.

Early Notables of the Mavor family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Mavor Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Mavor family to Ireland

Some of the Mavor family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 41 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 Mavor family

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Richard Mower, who arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1642; as well as C. Mowrey, who arrived in San Francisco in 1850 and Roger Mawry, who settled on Rhode Island at an undetermined date..

Contemporary Notables of the name Mavor (post 1700) +

  • Brigadier Wilfred Mavor (b. 1892), Canadian Deputy Master-General of Ordnance, National Defence Headquarters [6]
  • Osborne Henry Mavor (1888-1951), birth name of James Bridie, Scottish playwright, screenwriter and surgeon
  • Mavor Brigham (1806-1897), American politician, Mayor of Toledo, Ohio, 1853 [7]

  1. Reaney, P.H and R.M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames. London: Routledge, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-415-05737-X)
  2. Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  4. Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  5. Black, George F., The Surnames of Scotland Their Origin, Meaning and History. New York: New York Public Library, 1946. Print. (ISBN 0-87104-172-3)
  6. Generals of World War II. (Retrieved 2011, October 3) Wilfred Mavor. Retrieved from
  7. The Political Graveyard: Alphabetical Name Index. (Retrieved 2016, February 25) . Retrieved from on Facebook