Parfit is one of the many new names that came to England
following the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Parfit family lived in Parfitt (Parfait) in Normandy
. Roger Perfectus or Parfait was listed there (1185-95) in the Mangn. Rotul. Scaccarii Normanniae. The name was derived from Middle English "parfit" meaning "fully trained, well versed." The Old French version of the name was parfit(e) which meant "completed," from the Latin "perfectus", "to finish or accomplish." Alternatively the name could have been a nickname
, probably originally denoting an apprentice who had completed his period of training.
Early Origins of the Parfit family
The surname Parfit was first found in Somerset
where they held a family seat
from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy
, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D. One of the first on record was Robert Parfyte who was listed in the Calendarium Inquisitionum Post Mortem. Robert Parfite was listed in the Rolls of Parliament. They acquired the lands of Bruton (anciently spelt Braueton) which was the King's land even at the time of King Edward the Confessor in 1050. At the time of the taking of the Domesday Book
Bruton was a wealthy village containing six mills.
Early History of the Parfit family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Parfit research.Another 237 words (17 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Parfit History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Parfit Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations
. When the Normans
became the ruling people of England
in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Perfect, Perfett, Perfitt, Parfitt, Parfect and others.
Early Notables of the Parfit family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Parfit Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Parfit family to the New World and Oceana
Some of the first settlers of this family name were:
Parfit Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
- Robert Parfit, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750
- Robert Parfit, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1750
Parfit Settlers in New Zealand in the 19th Century
- Isaac Parfit, aged 31, a sawyer, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842
- Elizabeth Parfit, aged 32, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842
- Jane Parfit, aged 8, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842
- Hannah Parfit, aged 2, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842
- Henry John Parfit, aged 10 weeks, who arrived in Nelson, New Zealand aboard the ship "Fifeshire" in 1842
Contemporary Notables of the name Parfit (post 1700)
- Derek Parfit (1942-2017), British philosopher