The name Southay arrived in England
after the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Southay family lived in Lincolnshire
, at Sotebi, from which their name is derived. The surname Southay is thus, a local
name, which means it derived from the name of a place where members of the family once owned land or where they may have resided.
Early Origins of the Southay family
The surname Southay was first found in Lincolnshire
where Ralph of Sotby held the village and church of Sotebi from the Bishop of Bayeux. This village church is still famous for its Norman chancel arch.
Early History of the Southay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Southay research.Another 145 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1500, 1450, 1594, 1683, 1654, 1656, 1623, 1704 and 1659 are included under the topic Early Southay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Southay 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 Sotheby, Sothaby, Sotherby, Southerby, Southby, Southey and many more.
Early Notables of the Southay family (pre 1700)
Another 35 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Southay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Southay family to the New World and Oceana
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 Southay or a variant listed above were: Henry and Elizabeth Southey who settled in Virginia with their children Mary and Thomas in 1623; Dan Southerby settled in Virginia in 1653; Mary Southerby settled in New England