Morwood History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The ancient history of the Morwood name begins with the ancient Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. The name is derived from when the family resided in either of the settlements called Marwood in the counties of Devon and Durham. The surname Morwood belongs to the large category of Anglo-Saxon habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. However, some experts theorize that the surname Morwood may be a nickname derived from the Old French word Malregard, which means evil look or evil eye.

Early Origins of the Morwood family

The surname Morwood was first found in Devon at Widworthy, a parish, in the union of Honiton, hundred of Colyton. "The church [of Widworthy], an ancient structure, contains the effigy of a knight in armour, and a fine monument by Bacon to the memory of James Marwood, Esq., a liberal benefactor to the parish. Benedictus Marwood, Esq., in 1742 gave £100, and the Rev. Joseph Somaster in 1770 left £50, to be applied to education." [1]

Early History of the Morwood family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Morwood research. Another 73 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1130, 1601, 1680, 1635, 1725, 1672, 1739, 1681 and 1740 are included under the topic Early Morwood History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Morwood Spelling Variations

Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. Changes in Anglo-Saxon names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Morwood include Marwood, Marward, Morwood and others.

Early Notables of the Morwood family (pre 1700)

Another 32 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Morwood Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Morwood migration to the United States +

Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Morwood or a variant listed above:

Morwood Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • Alexander Morwood, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1850
  • Alexander Morwood, who settled in Pennsylvania in 1850
  • John Morwood, who was on record in New York in 1864

Contemporary Notables of the name Morwood (post 1700) +

  • James Henry Weldon Morwood (1943-2017), English Classicist, and Emeritus Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford University
  • Phil Morwood (b. 1982), Australian rugby league player
  • Paul Morwood (b. 1959), former Australian rules footballer
  • Tony Morwood (b. 1960), former Australian rules footballer
  • Peter Morwood (b. 1956), Northern Irish fantasy novelist and screenwriter
  • Shane Morwood (b. 1961), former Australian rules footballer
  • Professor Michael "Mike" Morwood (d. 2013), Australian archaeologist, known for discovering Homo floresiensis ("Flores Man,") recipient of the Rhys Jones Medal in 2012


  1. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.


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