The name Spenay reached English shores for the first time with the ancestors of the Spenay family as they migrated following the Norman Conquest
of 1066. The Spenay family lived in Warwickshire
. Their name, however, is a reference to Epineville, Normandy
, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest
Early Origins of the Spenay family
The surname Spenay was first found in Warwickshire
where they held a family seat
from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy
, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D. The Spineys were originally of Spine Villa or Epineville of Scine in Inf in the arrondisement of Yvetot, and held lands in Feltwell in Norfolk
and Cloughton in Warwickshire.
Early History of the Spenay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Spenay research.Another 133 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1130, 1406, 1363, 1371, 1372, 1373, 1388, 1397, 1397, 1397 and 1402 are included under the topic Early Spenay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Spenay Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names tend to be marked by an enormous number of spelling variations
. This is largely due to the fact that Old and Middle English lacked any spelling rules when Norman French was introduced in the 11th century. The languages of the English courts at that time were French and Latin. These various languages mixed quite freely in the evolving social milieu. The final element of this mix is that medieval scribes spelled words according to their sounds rather than any definite rules, so a name was often spelled in as many different ways as the number of documents it appeared in. The name was spelled Spiney, Spinney, Spine, Spines and others.
Early Notables of the Spenay family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William de Spynie (died 1406), Scottish prelate, canon of Moray by 1363 and Precentor (Chanter) of Aberdeen in 1371, exchanged the latter position with William Boyl for the Precentorship of Moray (1372-1373), became Dean of Aberdeen by 1388, possibly became Dean of Dunkeld... Another 66 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Spenay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Spenay family to the New World and Oceana
Because of the political and religious discontent in England
, families began to migrate abroad in enormous numbers. Faced with persecution and starvation at home, the open frontiers and generally less oppressive social environment of the New World seemed tantalizing indeed to many English people. The trip was difficult, and not all made it unscathed, but many of those who did get to Canada and the United States made important contributions to the young nations in which they settled. Some of the first North American settlers with Spenay name or one of its variants: C. Spinney who arrived in New York in 1823; J. Spinney arrived in San Francisco in 1850; Thomas Spines settled in New England