Orval is a name of ancient Anglo-Saxon
origin and comes from the family once having lived in the settlement of Orwell in Cambridgeshire
, in Orwell Haven in Suffolk
, or in the lands of Orwell in the Scottish county of Kinross. The surname Orval belongs to the large category of Anglo-Saxon habitation
names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads.
Early Origins of the Orval family
The surname Orval was first found in Cambridgeshire
at Orwell which dates back to the Domesday Book
where it was listed as Ordeuuelle. The place name literally means "spring by a pointed hill," from the Old English words ord + wella. The River Orwell in Suffolk
dates back to the 11th century when it was listed as Arewan and later as Orewell in 1341. This ancient Celtic river-name means simply "stream" having derived from the Old English word "wella." CITATION[CLOSE]
Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
Today Orwell, Cambridgeshire
has a population of about 1,080 people and the Roman road still runs to Cambridge runs alongside the village. St Andrew's Church dates back to about 1150 A.D.
Early History of the Orval family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Orval research.Another 199 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1140, 1231 and 1362 are included under the topic Early Orval History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Orval Spelling Variations
Sound was what guided spelling in the essentially pre-literate Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Also, before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Therefore, spelling variations
were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Orval family name include Orwell, Orwill, Orvell and others.
Early Notables of the Orval family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Orval Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Orval family to the New World and Oceana
For political, religious, and economic reasons, thousands of English families boarded ships for Ireland
, Canada, the America colonies, and many of smaller tropical colonies in the hope of finding better lives abroad. Although the passage on the cramped, dank ships caused many to arrive in the New World diseased and starving, those families that survived the trip often went on to make valuable contributions to those new societies to which they arrived. Early immigrants bearing the Orval surname or a spelling variation of the name include: Catherine Orwell and her husband were banished to Jamaica in 1685.