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Where did the Phillips coat of arms come from? When did the Phillips family first arrive in the United States?

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Coat of Arms > Phillips Coat of Arms

Phillips Coat of Arms
 Phillips Coat of Arms

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Origin Displayed: Welsh

Origins Available: Irish, Welsh

Spelling variations of this family name include: Phillips, Philips, Phillip, Philip, Pilip, Pillips, Fillip, Filip, Filips, Phillipes, Philipes, Phillup, Philups, Fillups, Filups, Pilups, Pillups, Fulop and many more.

First found in Kent where legend has it that the family (but not the surname) is descended from Maximus, the Briton, Roman Emperor from 383 until his death in 388, and the King of Britain, when he married the daughter of Octavius, King of the Britons.

Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Elinor and Henry Phillips who settled in Virginia in 1623; George Phillips, who came to Salem, MA in 1630; John, Edward, William, Andrew, Bodman, Charles, David, Griffith, James and Jo Phillips, who all arrived with their families in Virginia between 1635 and 1667.

(From www.HouseOfNames.com Archives copyright 2000 - 2009)

Motto Translated: Patriotism leads me.

Suggested Readings for the name Phillips
Descendants of William and Elizabeth (Iser) Phillips of Columbiana County, Ohio By Rita Hineman Townsend, Hatfield and Phillips Families of Eastern Kentucky and Southwestern Virginia by Harry Leon Sellards.

Some noteworthy people of the name Phillips
  • Corporal Ruben J. Phillips (1874-1936), American Marine awarded the Medal of Honor for bravery
  • Charles Franklin Phillips (1910-1998), American economist and author
  • William Daniel Phillips (b. 1948), American Nobel Prize winning physicist (1997)
  • Private George Phillips (1926-1945), American Marine awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1945
  • Claire Phillips (1908-1960), American spy and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • John L. Phillips PH.D. (b. 1951), American NASA Astronaut with over 203 days in space
  • Ralph Saul Phillips (1913-1998), American mathematician awarded the Steele Prize for Lifetime Achievement in 1997
  • Pauline Esther Phillips (1918-2013), also known as Abigail Van Buren, an American advice columnist and radio show host who began the "Dear Abby" column in 1956
  • John McCandlish Phillips Jr., (1927-2013), American journalist and author on religious subjects who worked at the New York Times from 1952 to 1973
  • Howard Phillips (1941-2013), American politician, founder of the Constitution Party


Clan Badge

Phillips, sept of the Clan MacDonald

Is your family of Scottish descent? If so, you can proudly display the MacDonald Clan Badge. This clan badge is used by all septs of that clan.

Phillips is also a Sept of the Clan MacDonell

Learn More About Welsh Surnames



Most Welsh surnames are patronymic; that is, they are derived from a personal name of an ancestor. In the Middle Ages, the prefixes ap, ab (son of) and ferch (daughter of) were commonly found in Welsh surnames. Welsh names used to include strings of patronymics going back through the generations, until the 16th century when people began to use fixed hereditary surnames. However, some surnames' prefixes can still be found today in many Welsh surnames, such as Prince, Probert, Bowen (ap Owen), and Beddoes. Henry VIII frowned upon this nomenclature and thus began the great change in Welsh surnames



The Black Prince, or Edward, Prince of Wales, (1330-76), is thought to have gained his nickname due to the color of his armor -- jet black. However, this claim cannot be verified. Contrary to popular conceptions, period illustrations typically depict him in silver or gilt armor, not black. He may have gained this moniker because he wore a black surcoat with a silver plume. Yet a more fantastic notion also circulates. Many hold the opinion that he was labeled black because of his skill as a knight or because he was often merciless towards the vanquished. His sacking of the town of Limoges in 1370 gives some credence to the latter notion. After taking the town, all its inhabitants were slaughtered, with no consideration to age or gender.



Writers and historians have long been divided on the truth of the many different tellings of the stories of Arthur, the great Welsh king of Britain. Although many now think that there is some truth underlying the widely varying accounts, the hard facts surrounding Arthur's reign are almost completely obscured in a mist of myths and legends. Like all legends, these tales evolved over many centuries. Their telling and retelling over those years, while it may have left them somewhat lacking in truth, has emphasized and expanded their most compelling parts, making the Arthurian saga as glorious and prolific a body of stories as any, in fact or fiction.


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This page was last modified on 21 February 2015 at 18:36.

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