Pudsay History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Pudsay is an ancient Norman name that arrived in England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Pudsay was originally De Puisay, from Puisaz, or Puisay, in the Orléannois (now Orléans), France. This place gave its name to one of the 'chief nobles of France,' Ebrard de Puisay, whose daughter Adelais was the second wife of the famous Roger de Montgomery, Earl of Shrewsbury. [1]

Early Origins of the Pudsay family

The surname Pudsay was first found in Yorkshire where they held a family seat at Pudsey in the West Riding of that county. Pudsey is about six miles from the city of Leeds. [2]

In 1086 Ilbert de Lacy held the lands, village and manor of Pudsey. One of the first of the name to be recorded was Hugh de Pudsey, Bishop of Durham who lived from c. 1125 to 1195. He was probably the son of that Hugh de Puiset, viscount of Chartres, who was for many years the opponent of Louis VI of France. He is thought to have emigrated to England under the protection of his uncle, Henry of Blois, Bishop of Winchester, who made him his archdeacon. [3]

Hugh de Puteaco, Pusaz, or De Pudsey, was elected Prince-Bishop of Durham in 1153. "No author has told us of the place of his birth, or the name of his father: we only know that he was a nephew of King Stephen, and of the Bishop of Winchester, and at that time Treasurer of York. Nevertheless, as the Archbishop had not been consulted in the election, both he and the monks who had chosen him were forced to submit to a sound whipping, standing with bare backs in the church at Beverley."[1] A little later, William de Pusaz was Bishop of Durham in 1189. [4]

The Pudseys were very numerous in the county of York, where they gave their name to Burton Pudsey (Pidsey), and were seated at Settle, Northam, Barforth-on-Tees, Arnford, Lawfield, &c. In the time of Edward III. Simon Pudsey of Barforth married Catherine de Bolton, who brought him the fair domain of Bolton-by-Bolland, in Craven; where, for many generations "the Pudseys enjoyed, within the compass of a moderate estate, every distinction, feudal or ecclesiastic, which their age and country could bestow—the manor, free-warren, park, advowson, and family chantry." Here, in their ancient hall, standing "very pleasantly among sweet woods and fruitful hills," Sir Ralph Pudsey sheltered Henry VI. during the summer months that succeeded the disastrous battle of Hexham. [1]

Early History of the Pudsay family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Pudsay research. Another 91 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1379, 1497 and 1681 are included under the topic Early Pudsay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Pudsay Spelling Variations

Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations. When the Normans became the ruling people of England in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Pudsey, Pudsie, Pudsy, Puddsey, Puddesey, Puddesay, Puddsay, Pudesay, Puddsie, Putsey and many more.

Early Notables of the Pudsay family (pre 1700)

More information is included under the topic Early Pudsay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Pudsay family

For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Pudsay or a variant listed above were: Ambrose Pudsey, who arrived in Maryland in 1733; William Puddy, who came to America in 1763; Hugh Pudsey, who settled in Nova Scotia in 1783; J. Puddy, who settled in Philadelphia in 1818.



The Pudsay 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: Fortuna favente
Motto Translation: By the favor of fortune.


  1. ^ Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  2. ^ Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  3. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  4. ^ 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)


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