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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright 2000 - 2016

Where did the English Paybody family come from? What is the English Paybody family crest and coat of arms? When did the Paybody family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Paybody family history?

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought much change to the island nation, including many immigrants with new names. Among these immigrants were the ancestors of the Paybody family, who lived in Hertfordshire. The name, however, is a reference to Pabode, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066. It has also been suggested that Peabody began as a nickname which marked a person by some physical characteristic, but, while this does seem probable, no convincing etymological derivation has been discovered to support this idea.


Before the last few hundred years the English language had no fixed system of spelling rules. For that reason, spelling variations occurred commonly in Anglo Norman surnames. Over the years, many variations of the name Paybody were recorded, including Peabody, Paybody and others.

First found in Hertfordshire, but we must take a moment to pass on a rather ridiculous origin of the name that this author agrees is rather 'far-fetched.' "The same as Paybody. Dixon derived it from Pae-body, 'one as handsome as a pae or peacock!' This is far-fetched enough for the ordinary belief, but Mr. Arthur goes much further, in deducing the lineage of the name from one Boadie, a kinsman of Queen Boadices, who escaped into Wales, and there got the name of Pea, or mountain, prefixed to his name !!" [1] After that distraction, we must seriously explore the origin of the distinguished name. "Pabode held a fief from the see of Durham, temp William I. He was probably of Flemish origin. Henry Pappede held this fief 1165 and from him descended the family of Pappady, Pabody or Peabody, from which [descend] the celebrated philanthropist of the name." [2]


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Paybody research. Another 169 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 108 and 1086 are included under the topic Early Paybody History in all our PDF Extended History products.


More information is included under the topic Early Paybody Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.


The unstable environment in England at this time caused numerous families to board ships and leave in search of opportunity and freedom from persecution abroad in places like Ireland, Australia, and particularly the New World. The voyage was extremely difficult, however, and only taken at great expense. The cramped conditions and unsanitary nature of the vessels caused many to arrive diseased and starving, not to mention destitute from the enormous cost. Still opportunity in the emerging nations of Canada and the United States was far greater than at home and many went on to make important contributions to the cultures of their adopted countries. An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Paybody arrived in North America very early: Francis Peabody settled in Hampton in New Hampshire in 1630; Lieutenant Francis Peabody settled in Topsfield in Massachusetts; George Peabody settled in Philadelphia.


The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Murus aeneus consienta sana
Motto Translation: A sound conscience is a wall of brass.


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  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ 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)

Other References

  1. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
  2. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
  4. Holt, J.C. Ed. Domesday Studies. Woodbridge: Boydell, 1987. Print. (ISBN 0-85115-477-8).
  5. Burke, Sir Bernard. Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Peerage and Baronetage, The Privy Council, Knightage and Compainonage. London: Burke Publishing, 1921. Print.
  6. Chadwick, Nora Kershaw and J.X.W.P Corcoran. The Celts. London: Penguin, 1790. Print. (ISBN 0140212116).
  7. Bradford, William. History of Plymouth Plantation 1620-1647 Edited by Samuel Eliot Morrison 2 Volumes. New York: Russell and Russell, 1968. Print.
  8. Marcharn, Frederick George. A Constitutional History of Modern England 1485 to the Present. London: Harper and Brothers, 1960. Print.
  9. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  10. Burke, Sir Bernard. General Armory Of England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Ramsbury: Heraldry Today. Print.
  11. ...

The Paybody Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Paybody Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 19 November 2015 at 13:22.

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