The Norman Conquest
in 1066 added many new elements to an already vibrant culture. Among these were thousands of new names. The Mollswithay family lived in a place named Molesworth in Cambridgeshire
or a place named Mouldsworth in Cheshire
. The place-name Molesworth is derived from the Old English word Mulesword,
which is composed of the elements mul,
which means mule,
which means enclosure.
The place-name Mouldsworth is derived from the Old English words molda,
which means the crown of the head
or top of the hill,
which again means enclosure. CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
Early Origins of the Mollswithay family
The surname Mollswithay was first found in Huntingdon
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor of Molesworth in that shire. Conjecturally they are descended from Eustace the Sheriff of Huntingdon
who held his lands at the time of the taking of the Domesday Book
from Countess Judith, a relation of Duke William of Normandy
. "Sir Walter de Molesworth was one of Edward the 1st's Crusaders." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Some of the family were found at Tetcott in Devon
since early times. "Tetcott House, the beautiful seat of Sir William Molesworth, Bart., was destroyed by fire in May, 1841." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Mollswithay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Mollswithay research.Another 111 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1124, 1638, 1689, 1656, 1725, 1680 and 1758 are included under the topic Early Mollswithay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Mollswithay Spelling Variations
Endless spelling variations
are a prevailing characteristic of Norman surnames. Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules, and the introduction of Norman French added an unfamiliar ingredient to the English linguistic stew. French and Latin, the languages of the court, also influenced spellings. Finally, Medieval scribes generally spelled words according to how they sounded, so one person was often referred to by different spellings in different documents. The name has been spelled Molesworth, Molesworthy, Mollsworth, Molsworth, Molswurth, Mollswurth, Mollswirth, Moleswirth, Mullsworth, Moldworth, Moldsworth and many more.
Early Notables of the Mollswithay family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir Hender Molesworth (1638-1689), 1st Baronet
Molesworth of Pencarrow, Governor of Jamaica; Robert Molesworth (1656-1725), 1st Viscount Molesworth, British statesman, English and Irish landowner, Ambassador to Denmark, Ambassador to Sweden... Another 38 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Mollswithay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Mollswithay family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the political and religious persecution within England
at the time, many English families left for the various British colonies abroad. The voyage was extremely difficult, though, and the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving. But for those who made it, the trip was most often worth it. Many of the families who arrived went on to make valuable contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. An inquiry into the early roots of North American families reveals a number of immigrants bearing the name Mollswithay or a variant listed above: Captain Moldsworth who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1766; and members of the family who settled at Spring Garden in Jamaica and became known as Colonial Gentry..
The Mollswithay 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: Vincit amor patriae
Motto Translation: My beloved country will conquer.