Papillault History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Papillault reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Papillault family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Papillault family lived in Pavelion, (Pavilion) "near Mantes, in Normandy. Torald de Papilion present in a great Council, London 1082. The Magni Rotuli Scaccarii Normanniae lists Joscelin, William Papeilon, Normandy 1180, Walter and William de Papeillon 1198."[1]

These entries mean than some of the family emigrated to England while others remained in Normandy. In French, the name literally means "of the pavilion," a tent which is "so called because spread out like the wings of a butterfly. Latin, papilionem, acc. OF papilio, (1) a butterfly, (a) a tent." [2]

Early Origins of the Papillault family

The surname Papillault was first found in the Dives Rolls which lists Ralph Papelion.

"He witnessed William the Conqueror's confirmation charter to the church of Durham ; and is mentioned among those present at a great Council held at Westminster in 1082 (Mon.Angl.). Ralph Papelion, in 1214, was elected Abbot of Westminster. Halnadus or Havenald de Papelion was a benefactor of Selby Abbey, and a witness to the Bishop of Lincoln's grant to Thorney in Cambridgeshire. "Dominus Rydel Papillon " and Nicholas Papilioun of Lincolnshire are entered in the Hundredorum Rolls of Edward I. ; and Geoffrey Pampilon was " one of the Procurators appointed by Simon Abbot of Croyland to appear on his behalf in the Parliament at York, 16 Edward. II." [3]

The Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 include a listing for Nicholas Papalion in Lincolnshire and during the reign of Edward II, the source the Freemen of York lists "John le Pavilloner (a maker of pavilions)." [2]

"The Papillons of Kent and Sussex are of Huguenot origin, and are descendants of Anthony Papillon, the friend of Erasmus, and one of the most eminent Protestants of France. His grandson, David Papillon, settled at Lubenham, co. Leicester, and was ancestor of the Papillons of Acrise." [4]

The movie Papillon (1973) starring Steve McQueen was based on the 1969 autobiography by the French convict Henri Charrière. Papillon was Henri Charrière's nickname.

Early History of the Papillault family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Papillault research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1230, 1455, 1487, 1623, 1702 and 1647 are included under the topic Early Papillault History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Papillault Spelling Variations

Before the advent of the printing press and the first dictionaries, the English language was not standardized. Sound was what guided spelling in the Middle Ages, so one person's name was often recorded under several variations during a single lifetime. Spelling variations were common, even among the names of the most literate people. Known variations of the Papillault family name include Papillon, Pampillon, Pamphlin, Pamphilon, Pamplin, Pamplyn, Plampin, Pampling, Pampynge and many more.

Early Notables of the Papillault family (pre 1700)

Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Papillault Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Papillault family

To escape the political and religious chaos of this era, thousands of English families began to migrate to the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. The passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe; however, those who made the voyage safely were encountered opportunities that were not available to them in their homeland. Many of the families that reached the New World at this time went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of the United States and Canada. Research into various historical records has revealed some of first members of the Papillault family to immigrate North America: Percy Pamphillion, and Edgar Pamphillion, who came to Canada sometime between 1884 and 1938 as "Home Children" orphans.



  1. ^ The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X)
  2. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  3. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  4. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.


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