The Anglo- Norman Conquest
lead by Strongbow
introduced the first non-Gaelic elements into Irish nomenclature. These Anglo- Normans
brought some traditions to Ireland
that were not readily found within Gaelic system of hereditary surnames
. One of the best examples of this is the local
surnames, such as Roachfort, were taken from the name of a place or a geographical feature where the person lived, held land, or was born. These surnames were very common in England
, but were almost non-existent within Ireland
previous to the conquest. The earliest surnames of this type came from Normandy
, but as the Normans
moved, they often created names in reference to where they actually resided. Therefore, some settlers eventually took names from Irish places. Originally, these place names were prefixed by de, which means from in French. This type of prefix was eventually either made a part of the surname, if the place name began with a vowel, or was eliminated entirely. The Roachfort family originally lived in either of the settlements called Rochford in the English counties of Essex
. The surname Roachfort belongs to the large category of Anglo-Norman habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. The Roachfort family of County Cork
was originally surnamed de Ridlesford. Their name became Roachfort through a mistranslation of the Gaelic form of the name.
Early Origins of the Roachfort family
The surname Roachfort was first found in counties Meath and Kilkenny
(Irish: Cill Chainnigh), the former Kingdom of Osraige (Ossory), located in Southeastern Ireland
in the province of Leinster
, where they had been granted lands by Strongbow
, Earl of Pembroke, during the Anglo- Norman invasion
in 1172. "The Irish family settled in that country at, or soon after, the Anglo- Norman invasion
. Their name was Latinized De Rupe Forti, 'of the strong rock,' which is doubtless its true meaning." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Early History of the Roachfort family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Roachfort research.Another 189 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1224, 1652, 1727 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Roachfort History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Roachfort Spelling Variations
Since church officials and medieval scribes spelt each name as it sounded to them; as a result, a single person could accumulate many different versions of his name within official records. A close examination of the origins of the name Roachfort revealed the following spelling variations: Rockford, Rockfort, Rochfort, Rochefort, Roakfort, Roakford, Rochford, Rocheford, Roachford, Roachfort, Rockfurd, Rockfurt, Ruckford, Ruckfort, Rucford and many more.
Early Notables of the Roachfort family (pre 1700)
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Roachfort Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Roachfort family to the New World and Oceana
During the middle of the 19th century, Irish families
often experienced extreme poverty and racial discrimination in their own homeland under English rule. Record numbers died of disease and starvation and many others, deciding against such a fate, boarded ships bound for North America. The largest influx of Irish settlers occurred with Great Potato Famine
of the late 1840s. Unfortunately, many of those Irish that arrived in Canada or the United States still experienced economic and racial discrimination. Although often maligned, these Irish people were essential to the rapid development of these countries because they provided the cheap labor required for the many canals, roads, railways, and other projects required for strong national infrastructures. Eventually the Irish went on to make contributions in the less backbreaking and more intellectual arenas of commerce, education, and the arts. Research early immigration and passenger lists revealed many early immigrants bearing the name Roachfort: Denis Rochford, his wife Mary and two children, who settled in Pennsylvania in 1682; and Peter Rockford, who settled in Philadelphia in 1875.
The Roachfort 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: Candor dat viribus alas
Motto Translation: Truth gives wings to strength.