Today's generation of the Molsworthe family bears a name that was brought to England
by the migration wave that was started by the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Molsworthe 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 Molsworthe family
The surname Molsworthe 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 Molsworthe family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Molsworthe research.Another 221 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1124, 1638, 1689, 1656, 1725, 1680 and 1758 are included under the topic Early Molsworthe History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Molsworthe Spelling Variations
Before English spelling was standardized a few hundred
years ago, spelling variations
of names were a common occurrence. Elements of Latin, Norman French and other languages became incorporated into English throughout the Middle Ages, and name spellings changed even among the literate. The variations of the surname Molsworthe include Molesworth, Molesworthy, Mollsworth, Molsworth, Molswurth, Mollswurth, Mollswirth, Moleswirth, Mullsworth, Moldworth, Moldsworth and many more.
Early Notables of the Molsworthe 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 Molsworthe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Molsworthe family to the New World and Oceana
at this time, the uncertainty of the political and religious environment of the time caused many families to board ships for distant British colonies in the hopes of finding land and opportunity, and escaping persecution. The voyages were expensive, crowded, and difficult, though, and many arrived in North America sick, starved, and destitute. Those who did make it, however, were greeted with greater opportunities and freedoms that they could have experienced at home. Many of those families went on to make important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Early immigration records have shown some of the first Molsworthes to arrive on North American shores: 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 Molsworthe 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.