Norman Conquest of England in 1066 brought many new words to England from which surnames were formed. Phear was one of these new Norman names. It was specifically tailored to its first bearer, who was a sociable person. It derives from the Middle English feare, which means comrade, or companion.
Early Origins of the Phear family
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. They were originally descended from Vere from Manche in the arrondisement of Coutances in Normandy, and Aubrey de Vere was an undertenant in Kensington, Middlesex, and two places in Northampton.
Early History of the Phear family
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Phear Spelling Variations
spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Fear, Fere and others.
Early Notables of the Phear family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Phear family to Ireland
Some of the Phear family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Phear family to the New World and Oceana
Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Phear or a variant listed above: Samuel Fear who settled in Charles Town, N.C. in 1772; Francis Fear settled in Virginia in 1679; George Fear settled in New England in 1750.
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