Pigou History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Pigou came to England with the ancestors of the Pigou family in the Norman Conquest of 1066. It comes from the Old English given name Picot or Pigot. The surname Pigou was originally derived from the Old English word pic, meaning a hill with a sharp point at its top, and would originally have indicated that its bearer lived near such a landmark.

"Picot was a personal name is clear, for Picot, a chief tenant in Hampshire, and Picot de Grentebrig', both occur in Domesday [Book]. It is curious, too, to observe that two families in Cheshire, the Pigots and Pichots, ran side by side for some generations, and Dr. Ormerod long ago surmised that both sprang from one common ancestor - Gilbert Pichot, Lord of Broxton." [1]

Another source notes that "the name of Pickett may be a corruption of Pickard, though we must remember that there is an estate of this name in the parish of South Perrott, Dorset." [2]

Early Origins of the Pigou family

The surname Pigou was first found in Cheshire and Cambridgeshire where Picot of Cambridge (c.1022-1090), born in Saye, Normandy, was a Norman landowner and rose to become Sheriff of Cambridgeshire (c. 1071-1090.) His son Robert, became implicated in a conspiracy against King Henry I, fled the country and the family estates were forfeit. [3] "Pygot occurs in Leland's supposed copy of the Roll of Battle Abbey." [4]

The Lincolnshire Survey listed Picotus de Laceles, temp. 1109 and later the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 listed Picot de Flexbergh, Wiltshire; Elis Pyket, Buckinghamshire; and Walter Pycot, Cambridgeshire. [1]

Another reference claims "the family originally came from Cheshire; William Pigott of Butley in the parish of Prestbury in that county, who died in 1376, was grandfather of Richard Pigott of Butley who married the heiress of Peshall." [5]

Early History of the Pigou family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pigou research. Another 208 words (15 lines of text) covering the years 1066, 1333, 1645, 1697, 1720, 1713, 1734, 1630, 1657, 1686, 1719, 1777, 1720, 1796, 1640 and 1716 are included under the topic Early Pigou History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pigou Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Pigott, Piggot, Piggett, Piggott, Piggot, Pigot, Picot and many more.

Early Notables of the Pigou family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Thomas Pigot (Pigott, Piggott) (1657-1686), an English cleric, academic and Fellow of the Royal Society; George Pigot, 1st Baron Pigot (1719-1777), former...
Another 29 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Pigou Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Pigou family to Ireland

Some of the Pigou family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 31 words (2 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Pigou family

Because of the political and religious discontent in England, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Pigou name or one of its variants: William Piggett who settled in Virginia in 1654; John Piggot settled in Virginia in 1654; Alexander Piggot settled in Barbados in 1745; William and Walter Piggott settled in Virginia in 1635.


Contemporary Notables of the name Pigou (post 1700) +

  • Francis Pigou (1832-1916), English prelate, Dean of Bristol
  • Arthur Cecil Pigou (1877-1959), English economist from Ryde, Isle of Wight, teacher and builder of the School of Economics at the University of Cambridge, eponym of Pigovian tax and inspiration for the Pigou Club
  • Frederick Pigou (1711-1792), British Director of the East India Company
  • Elfrida Pigou (1911-1960), Canadian pioneering mountaineer from Vernon, British Columbia, with many first ascents to her credit, eponym of Mount Elfrida


The Pigou Motto +

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: Tout foys prest
Motto Translation: Always ready.


  1. ^ Bardsley, C.W, A Dictionary of English and Welsh Surnames: With Special American Instances. Wiltshire: Heraldry Today, 1901. Print. (ISBN 0-900455-44-6)
  2. ^ Guppy, Henry Brougham, Homes of Family Names in Great Britain. 1890. Print.
  3. ^ 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)
  4. ^ Harrison, Henry, Surnames of the United Kingdom: A Concise Etymological Dictionary Baltimore: Geneological Publishing Company, 2013. Print
  5. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.


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