Mellebay is an ancient name whose history on English soil dates back to the wave of emigration that followed the Norman Conquest
in 1066. The name comes from the Old Norman personal name
Melmor. The name Mellanby was also the name of several places in Cumberland
and the North Riding of Yorkshire
. The family name Mellebay was brought to England
after the Norman Conquest
, when William the Conqueror gave his friends and relatives most of the land formerly owned by Anglo-Saxon
Early Origins of the Mellebay family
The surname Mellebay was first found in Yorkshire
where they held a family seat
as Lord of the Manor of the large village of Malmerbi or Melmerby, near Hutton Conyers. At the time of the taking of the Domesday Book
in 1086, a survey of all England
taken by Duke William to record the ownership of all taxable land in England
, Melmerby was held by Count Alan, and, conjecturally, it is from this family the surname is descended. Melmerbi is given by Cottle as "farm of the devotee of (St) Mary" but this shows an Irish origin which is unsupported. Count Allan also held Wensleydale, south of Richmond. He was anciently a Breton
, known as Allan the Black, distinguishing him from Duke Allan the Red, his brother. It was customary amongst the Norman families who introduced surnames into England
after the Conquest, to name their sons, nephews and so on, by the name of the Manors which they held so as to distinguish these descendents from the main line.
Early History of the Mellebay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mellebay research.Another 27 words (2 lines of text) covering the years 1316 and 1412 are included under the topic Early Mellebay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Mellebay Spelling Variations
Multitudes of spelling variations
are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans
introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled Mellanby, Mellanbie, Mellsanby, Melsanby, Melanbie, Melanby, Mellerby, Melerby, Melanbie, Melmerbie, Mellmerby, Mellmerby, Mellmerbie, Mallansby, Malansbie, Mallansbie, Malansby, Melmerby, Mellenbie, Mellenby, Melenby, Melenbie, Mallenbray, Malenbray, Melanbray, Melanbry, Malenbry, Melsanby and many more.
Early Notables of the Mellebay family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Mellebay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Mellebay family to Ireland
Some of the Mellebay 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 Mellebay family to the New World and Oceana
Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland
, North America, and Australia
in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England
. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Mellebay or a variant listed above: John and Joseph Mallenbray arrived in New York in 1790.
Mellebay Family Crest Products