Temples History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The name Temples is part of the ancient legacy of the Anglo-Saxon tribes of Britain. It is a product of when the family lived in an area that was close to the temple. Temples is a topographic surname, which was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. During the Middle Ages, as society became more complex, individuals needed a way to be distinguishable from others. Toponymic surnames were developed as a result of this need. Various features in the landscape or area were used to distinguish people from one another. In this case the original bearers of the surname Temples were named due to their close proximity to the temple or the place of worship.

Early Origins of the Temples family

The surname Temples was first found in Cheshire where they held a family seat from very ancient times, and said to be descended from Leofric, the Saxon Earl of Chester, who died in 1057 before the Conquest. He left issue, Algar, Earl of Mercia and East Anglia, and the son Henry who obtained land from Robert, Earl of Leicester in the form of the Manor of Temple in Leicestershire. [1] One line of this name claim Burton Dassett, Warwickshire as their ancestral home.

Much father to the south and west, we found this interesting note about the parish of Temple, Cornwall. "However applicable the name of this parish might have been to it in former years, nothing can be more injudicious than its present appropriation, since the whole district contains no place of worship whatever, and only three cottages in which human beings reside. The manor and church of Temple belonged originally to the Knights Templars, to whom were given many peculiar privileges. This order was founded in the year 1118, when Godfrey de St. Omer, Hugh de Pagans, and several others offered their services to Baldwin, king of Jerusalem, to defend the pilgrims travelling thither from robbery and violence. Baldwin, to reward their services, bestowed upon them a house near the Temple, in consequence of which they were called Knights Templars. When the Knights Templars and their retinue deserted the place, their tenants, not having their possessions, followed their example. Their chapel was then suffered to fall into ruin." [2]

Early History of the Temples family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Temples research. Another 100 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1567, 1637, 1611, 1599, 1663, 1645, 1653, 1606, 1680, 1613, 1674, 1657, 1670, 1634, 1697, 1628, 1699, 1669, 1749, 1718, 1555, 1627, 1600, 1677, 1641, 1677, 1628 and 1699 are included under the topic Early Temples History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Temples Spelling Variations

The first dictionaries that appeared in the last few hundred years did much to standardize the English language. Before that time, spelling variations in names were a common occurrence. The language was changing, incorporating pieces of other languages, and the spelling of names changed with it. Temples has been spelled many different ways, including Temple, Tempell, Temples and others.

Early Notables of the Temples family (pre 1700)

Distinguished members of the family include Sir Thomas Temple (1567- ca. 1637), English landowner and Member of Parliament, created 1st Baronet Temple of Stowe, Buckinghamshire in 1611; Peter Temple (ca. 1599-1663) of Temple Hall, an English politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1645 and 1653, one of the Regicides of King Charles I; James Temple (1606-1680), a puritan and English Civil War soldier from Rochester, Kent who...
Another 70 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Temples Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Temples family to Ireland

Some of the Temples family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 103 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Migration of the Temples family

Thousands of English families in this era began to emigrate the New World in search of land and freedom from religious and political persecution. Although the passage was expensive and the ships were dark, crowded, and unsafe, those who made the voyage safely were rewarded with opportunities unavailable to them in their homeland. Research into passenger and immigration lists has revealed some of the very first Templess to arrive in North America: Edward Temple, who arrived in Virginia in 1623; Agnes Temple, who came to Virginia in 1670; Christina Tempel, who settled in Philadelphia in 1772; as well as James Temple, who settled in Virginia in New York in 1823..


Contemporary Notables of the name Temples (post 1700) +

  • John M. Temples, American Republican politician, Mayor of Joplin, Missouri, 1942-45


The Temples 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: Templa quam dilecta
Motto Translation: Temples, how beloved.


  1. ^ Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  2. ^ Hutchins, Fortescue, The History of Cornwall, from the Earliest Records and Traditions to the Present Time. London: William Penaluna, 1824. Print


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