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 Rockfyrth, 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 Rockfyrth family originally lived in either of the settlements called Rochford in the English counties of Essex
. The surname Rockfyrth belongs to the large category of Anglo-Norman habitation names, which are derived from pre-existing names for towns, villages, parishes, or farmsteads. The Rockfyrth family of County Cork
was originally surnamed de Ridlesford. Their name became Rockfyrth through a mistranslation of the Gaelic form of the name.
Early Origins of the Rockfyrth family
The surname Rockfyrth 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 Rockfyrth family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Rockfyrth research.Another 189 words (14 lines of text) covering the years 1224, 1652, 1727 and 1690 are included under the topic Early Rockfyrth History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Rockfyrth Spelling Variations
During an investigation of the origin of each name, it was found that church officials and medieval scribes spelled many surnames as they sounded. Therefore, during the lifetime of a single person, a name could be spelt numerous ways. Some of the spelling variations
for the name Rockfyrth include Rockford, Rockfort, Rochfort, Rochefort, Roakfort, Roakford, Rochford, Rocheford, Roachford, Roachfort, Rockfurd, Rockfurt, Ruckford, Ruckfort, Rucford and many more.
Early Notables of the Rockfyrth family (pre 1700)
Another 49 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Rockfyrth Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Rockfyrth family to the New World and Oceana
A great number of Irish families
left their homeland in the late 18th century and throughout the 19th century, migrating to such far away lands as Australia
and North America. The early settlers left after much planning and deliberation. They were generally well off but they desired a tract of land that they could farm solely for themselves. The great mass of immigrants to arrive on North American shores in the 1840s differed greatly from their predecessors because many of them were utterly destitute, selling all they had to gain a passage on a ship or having their way paid by a philanthropic society. These Irish people were trying to escape the aftermath of the Great Potato Famine: poverty, starvation, disease, and, for many, ultimately death. Those that arrived on North American shores were not warmly welcomed by the established population, but they were vital to the rapid development of the industry, agriculture, and infrastructure of the infant nations of the United States and what would become Canada. Early passenger and immigration lists reveal many Irish settlers bearing the name Rockfyrth: Denis Rochford, his wife Mary and two children, who settled in Pennsylvania in 1682; and Peter Rockford, who settled in Philadelphia in 1875.
The Rockfyrth 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.