Monfitchet History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Monfitchet is a name that first reached England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Monfitchet family lived in "Monfichet, or Montfiquet, in the arrondissement of Bayeaux, said to be so named from their Scandinavian ancestor. " [1] [2]

Early Origins of the Monfitchet family

The surname Monfitchet was first found in Essex at Stansted Mountfitchet, a village and civil parish in the union of Bishop-Stortford that dates back to the Domesday Book when it was listed as Stanesteda.

By c.1290, the village was known as Stansted Mounfichet from the Muntfichet (Montfitchet) family who resided there since the 12th century. [3]

However, other records date back further revealing Robert Gernon Montfitchet holding lands there at the time of the Conquest that included a castle, of which there are still some remains. Another source claims the name is "descended from Robert Gernon, a great tenant in [the] Domesday [Book]. His son, according to Morant, took this name from the castle of Stanstead, county Essex, from the raised mount which he there constructed. " [2]

"The castle of Montfichet long remained, as well as the Church of St. Catherine in the castle, a foundation of this family. About 1050 Robert, surnamed Guernon (moustache), Baron of Montfichet, witnessed a charter of Duke William (Gall. Christ. xi. Instr. 229). He had issue, 1, William de Montfichet, who d. s. p., when the barony devolved on Wil­liam, the son of his brother; 2, Robert Guernon or Gernon, who held a great barony in Essex, &c., 1086. From his elder son William de Montfichet descended the Barons of that name, whose seats were at Stanstead Montfichet, Essex, and Montfichet Tower, London, of which city the Montfichets were hereditary standard-bearers or military chiefs in time of war. The younger branches retained the name of Gernon. Alured Gernon, brother of William de Montfichet, had estates in Essex and Middlesex 1130 (Rot. Pip.). Matthew, his son, 1135 witnessed a charter of William Montfichet (Mon. i. 803). Ralph, his son, 1165, held a fief from Montfichet in Essex, and was granted Bakewell, Derbyshire, by Richard I." [1]

Early History of the Monfitchet family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Monfitchet research. Another 181 words (13 lines of text) covering the years 1214, 1296 and 1312 are included under the topic Early Monfitchet History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Monfitchet Spelling Variations

It is only in the last few hundred years that the English language has been standardized. For that reason, Anglo-Norman surnames like Monfitchet are characterized by many spelling variations. Scribes and monks in the Middle Ages spelled names they sounded, so it is common to find several variations that refer to a single person. As the English language changed and incorporated elements of other European languages such as Norman French and Latin, even literate people regularly changed the spelling of their names. The variations of the name Monfitchet include Muschat, Muschet, Montfichett, Montfiquet and many more.

Early Notables of the Monfitchet family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Monfitchet family

Faced with the chaos present in England at that time, many English families looked towards the open frontiers of the New World with its opportunities to escape oppression and starvation. People migrated to North America, as well as Australia and Ireland in droves, paying exorbitant rates for passages in cramped, unsafe ships. Many of the settlers did not make the long passage alive, but those who did see the shores of North America were welcomed with great opportunity. Many of the families that came from England went on to make essential contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Some of the first immigrants to cross the Atlantic and come to North America carried the name Monfitchet, or a variant listed above: George Muschcat, who settled in Philadelphia in 1774; Martin Muscheck settled in Philadelphia in 1867; John Fitchett settled in Virginia in 1635; William and Rebecca Fitchett settled in Philadelphia in 1773..



  1. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 2 of 3
  2. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)


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