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Nosworthey History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The illustrious surname Nosworthey finds its origin in the rocky, sea swept coastal area of southwestern England known as Cornwall. Although surnames were fairly widespread in medieval England, people were originally known only by a single name. The process by which hereditary surnames were adopted is extremely interesting. As populations grew, people began to assume an extra name to avoid confusion and to further identify themselves. Under the Feudal System of government, surnames evolved and they often reflected life on the manor and in the field. Lords and their tenants often became known by the name of the feudal territory they owned or lived on. Unlike most Celtic peoples, who favored patronymic names, the Cornish predominantly used local surnames. This was due to the heavy political and cultural influence of the English upon the Cornish People at the time that surnames first came into use. Local surnames were derived from where a person lived, held land, or was born. While many Cornish surnames of this sort appear to be topographic surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees, many are actually habitation surnames derived from lost or unrecorded place names. The name Nosworthey is a local type of surname and the Nosworthey family lived in Devon at the manor of Knaworth, which later came to be spelled Noseworthy.

Early Origins of the Nosworthey family

The surname Nosworthey was first found in Devon where they held a family seat from early times and their first records appeared on the early census rolls taken by the early Kings of Britain to determine the rate of taxation of their subjects.

Early History of the Nosworthey family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Nosworthey research.
Another 129 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1481, 1530, 1502, 1503 and 1523 are included under the topic Early Nosworthey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Nosworthey Spelling Variations

Cornish surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. The frequent changes in surnames are due to the fact that the Old and Middle English languages lacked definite spelling rules. The official court languages, which were Latin and French, were also influential on the spelling of a surname. Since the spelling of surnames was rarely consistent in medieval times, and scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded rather than adhering to any specific spelling rules, it was common to find the same individual referred to with different spellings of their surname in the ancient chronicles. Moreover, a large number of foreign names were brought into England, which accelerated and accentuated the alterations to the spelling of various surnames. Lastly, spelling variations often resulted from the linguistic differences between the people of Cornwall and the rest of England. The Cornish spoke a unique Brythonic Celtic language which was first recorded in written documents during the 10th century. However, they became increasingly Anglicized, and Cornish became extinct as a spoken language in 1777, although it has been revived by Cornish patriots in the modern era. The name has been spelled Noseworthy, Norseworthy, Nosworthy, Norseworth, Noseworth and many more.

Early Notables of the Nosworthey family (pre 1700)

Another 29 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Nosworthey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Nosworthey family to the New World and Oceana

An investigation of the immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Nosworthey: Tristrum and Ann Nosworthy, who arrived in Virginia in 1639; Joan Nosworthy, who came to Virginia in 1664; Edw. Nosworthy, who was on record in Virginia in 1666.

Nosworthey Family Crest Products

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