England following the Norman Conquest in 1066 they brought their family name with them. They lived in Sussex having derived from the Old English word shelf, meaning a wooded clearing on a ledge or plateau, and indicates that the original bearer lived near such a landmark. Following the Norman line "genealogists assert that the Sheeleys 'came out of France with William the Conqueror.' Seulle, Shevels, or Sheuile, is found in the lists called the Roll of Battel Abbey." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Early Origins of the Shelay family
Sussex where "there is no doubt of the antiquity of the house of Shelley, the accounts of the earlier descents of the family are very scanty. Originally of the county of Huntingdon, [now Cambridgeshire] the Shelleys are said to have removed into this county at a very early period." CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print. The earliest record of the name was John and Thomas Shelley who followed the fortunes of Richard II and were subsequently beheaded in the first year of Henry IV's rule. The remaining brother who was not connected, retained his possessions. CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
Early History of the Shelay family
Another 307 words (22 lines of text) covering the years 1297, 1567, 1644, 1792 and 1822 are included under the topic Early Shelay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Shelay Spelling Variations
spelling variations are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Shelay has been recorded under many different variations, including Shelly, Shelley and others.
Early Notables of the Shelay family (pre 1700)
Another 42 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Shelay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Shelay family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Shelays were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America: John Shelley who settled in Virginia in 1623; Robert Shelley settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1632; Joseph Shelley was banished to Barbados in 1685.
The Shelay 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: Fey e fidalgia
Motto Translation: Faith and fidelity
Shelay Family Crest Products