Nighe History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The vast movement of people that followed the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought the Nighe family name to the British Isles. Nighe comes from the Old English given name Noye.

Early Origins of the Nighe family

The surname Nighe was first found in Cornwall. "Pen-tre, Pendre, or Pendray, in this parish, gave its name to a family thence called Pendray, so early as the reign of Henry VI. About this time, on the failure of male heirs, two heiresses carried the family estates by marriage to Bonython of Carclew, and Noye. Pendray fell to the share of Noye, on which estates the family resided for several descents; William Noye, the celebrated attorney general of Charles I. was born here. Burmuhall in this parish, was also another seat belonging to the Noyes, in which it has been said that William Noye was born." [1]

At one time, some of the family held the manor of Amalibria in the parish of Towednack, Cornwall. This was held by Humphrey Noy, Esq., but he conveyed it to his son-in-law Davies. No year is given for this entry. [1]

Early History of the Nighe family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nighe research. Another 90 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1524, 1614, 1568, 1622, 1614, 1647 and 1717 are included under the topic Early Nighe History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Nighe 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 Noyes, Noye, Nye, Nie, Noyers, Noyce, Noise and others.

Early Notables of the Nighe family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Robert Noyes (1524-1614); and his son, Rev. William Noyes (1568-1622), an English clergyman, Rector of Cholderton, Wiltshire. Peter Noyes was an English politician, Member of Parliament for Andover in 1614. Reverend Nicholas Noyes Jr...
Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Nighe Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Nighe family

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 Nighe or a variant listed above: Peter Noyce who settled in New England with his wife and two children in 1638; James Noyes settled in New England in 1630; Elizabeth Noyes settled in Massachusetts in 1638.



The Nighe 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: Nuncia pacis oliva
Motto Translation: A message of peace.


  1. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print


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