The distinguished surname Oley emerged among the industrious people of Flanders
, which was an important trading partner and political ally of Britain during the Middle Ages. As a result of the frequent commercial intercourse between the Flemish
and English nations, many Flemish
migrants settled in Britain. In early times, people were known by only a single name. However, as the population grew and people traveled further afield, it became increasingly necessary to assume an additional name to differentiate between bearers of the same personal name
. The manner in which hereditary surnames
arose is interesting. Local
surnames are derived from where the original bearer lived, was born, or held land. Flemish
surnames of this type frequently are prefixed by de la
or de le,
which mean of the
or from the.
The Oley family originally lived near a prominent group of holly shrubs. The surname Oley is derived from the Old English words holi, holie,
which in turn come from the Old English words holegn
which mean holly.
The surname Oley belongs to the class of topographic
surnames, which were given to people who resided near physical features such as hills, streams, churches, or types of trees.
Early Origins of the Oley family
The surname Oley was first found in Norfolk
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 Oley family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Oley research.Another 155 words (11 lines of text) covering the years 1602, 1686 and 1679 are included under the topic Early Oley History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Oley Spelling Variations
surnames are characterized by a large number of spelling variations
. One reason for this is that medieval English lacked definite spelling rules. The spellings of surnames were also influenced by the official court languages, which were French and Latin. Names were rarely spelled consistently in medieval times. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, rather than adhering to specific spelling rules, and people often had their names registered in several different forms throughout their lives. One of the greatest reasons for change is the linguistic uniqueness of the Flemish
settlers in England
, who spoke a language closely related to Dutch. The pronunciation and spelling of Flemish
names were often altered to suit the tastes of English-speaking people. In many cases, the first, final, or middle syllables of surnames were eliminated. The name has been spelled Holly, Holley, Hollie and others.
Early Notables of the Oley family (pre 1700)
Another 28 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Oley Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Oley family to Ireland
Some of the Oley family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 145 words (10 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Oley family to the New World and Oceana
The records on immigrants and ships' passengers show a number of people bearing the name Oley:
Oley Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
- Sebastian Oley, who landed in Maryland in 1666-1750 CITATION[CLOSE]
Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)
Oley Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Nicholas Oley, aged 35, who emigrated to the United States from London, England, in 1912
- Nickolas Richard Oley, aged 35, who settled in America from London, England, in 1912
- Warren Oley, aged 22, who emigrated to the United States, in 1912
- Warren W. Oley, aged 23, who landed in America, in 1912
- John Oley, aged 23, who landed in America, in 1920
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Contemporary Notables of the name Oley (post 1700)
- Barnabas Oley (1602-1686), English churchman and academic