Papillion History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms
- Origins Available:
The name Papillion was brought to England in the great wave of migration following the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Papillion 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."
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." 
Early Origins of the Papillion family
The surname Papillion 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." 
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)." 
"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." 
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 Papillion family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Papillion research. Another 110 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1230, 1455, 1487, 1623, 1702 and 1647 are included under the topic Early Papillion History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Papillion 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 Papillon, Pampillon, Pamphlin, Pamphilon, Pamplin, Pamplyn, Plampin, Pampling, Pampynge and many more.
Early Notables of the Papillion family (pre 1700)
Another 36 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Papillion Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Papillion 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 Papillion or a variant listed above: Percy Pamphillion, and Edgar Pamphillion, who came to Canada sometime between 1884 and 1938 as "Home Children" orphans.
- 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)
- Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
- 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
- Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.