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


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The surname Paytfen was first found in Yorkshire in the West Riding. where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Headingly. After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, William, Duke of Normandy, having prevailed over King Harold, granted most of Britain to his many victorious Barons. It was not uncommon to find a Baron, or a Bishop, with 60 or more Lordships scattered throughout the country. These he gave to his sons, nephews and other junior lines of his family and they became known as under-tenants. They adopted the Norman system of surnames which identified the under-tenant with his holdings so as to distinguish him from the senior stem of the family. After many rebellious wars between his Barons, Duke William, commissioned a census of all England to determine in 1086, settling once and for all, who held which land. He called the census the Domesday Book, [1] indicating that those holders registered would hold the land until the end of time. Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Headingly, which William de Poitevin acquired through marriage to the daughter of Ilbert de Lacy who was recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086. They were originally from Poitou in Normandy.

Spelling variations of this family name include: Poitevin, Paytfen, Peytwin, Peteyvin, Peytivin, Portwine, Portwin, Potwin, Potwyn, Potwyne, Portwyn, Pettevin, Petvin, Peytvin, Portway, Portwey, Potyn and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Paytfen research. Another 172 words (12 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Paytfen History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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

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Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Elizabeth Portwood, who arrived in Maryland in 1679; John Portwood, who arrived in Maryland in 1679; Thomas Portwood, who came to Virginia in 1739; and Francis Portwine, who was on record in Ontario in the census of 1871..

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  1. ^ Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)

Other References

  1. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  2. Lennard, Reginald. Rural England 1086-1135 A Study of Social and Agrarian Conditions. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1959. Print.
  3. Colletta, John P. They Came In Ships. Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1993. Print.
  4. Fairbairn. Fairbain's book of Crests of the Families of Great Britain and Ireland, 4th Edition 2 volumes in one. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1968. Print.
  5. Innes, Thomas and Learney. The Tartans of the Clans and Families of Scotland 1st Edition. Edinburgh: W & A. K. Johnston Limited, 1938. Print.
  6. Bardsley, C.W. A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6).
  7. Virkus, Frederick A. Ed. Immigrant Ancestors A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America Before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1964. Print.
  8. Samuelsen, W. David. New York City Passenger List Manifests Index 1820 - 1824. North Salt Lake, Utah: Accelerated Indexing Systems International, 1986. Print.
  9. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  10. Crispin, M. Jackson and Leonce Mary. Falaise Roll Recording Prominent Companions of William Duke of Normandy at the Conquest of England. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
  11. ...

The Paytfen Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Paytfen 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 2 October 2003 at 16:09.

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