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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2016
The name Tew can be traced to the ancient Celtic culture of Wales. The surname Tew is derived from the Welsh word "tew," which means "portly" or "plump," and was most likely originally a nickname for a heavy-set person.
The surname Tew was first found in Cardiganshire (Welsh: Sir Aberteifi), the former Kingdom of Ceredigion, created as a county in 1282 by Edward I, and located on the West coast of Wales, where they held a family seat anciently. Traditionally they claim descent from Rhodri Mawr, the first great King of Wales through Lord Rhys, Prince of South Wales. Gwenllian, daughter of John Tew married Dafydd Llywellyn Lloyd of Castle Howel, first knight of the shire for Cardiganshire.
Welsh surnames are relatively few in number, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations. There are many factors that explain the preponderance of Welsh variants, but the earliest is found during the Middle Ages when Welsh surnames came into use. Scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, which often resulted in a single person's name being inconsistently recorded over his lifetime. The transliteration of Welsh names into English also accounts for many of the spelling variations: the unique Brythonic Celtic language of the Welsh had many sounds the English language was incapable of accurately reproducing. It was also common for members of a same surname to change their names slightly, in order to signify a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations. For all of these reasons, the many spelling variations of particular Welsh names are very important. The surname Tew has occasionally been spelled Tew, Tews, Tewell, Tewel, Tuel, Tuell and others.
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Tew research. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1654, 1718, 1714, 1715, 1650 and 1695 are included under the topic Early Tew History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was John Tew of Cardigan; Henry Tew (1654-1718), early American 16th Deputy Governor of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations (1714-1715); and Thomas Tew ( c. 1650-1695), American pirate who gained notoriety in the Red Sea...
Another 45 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Tew Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Some of the Tew family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 67 words (5 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, many people from Wales joined the general migration to North America in search of land, work, and freedom. These immigrants greatly contributed to the rapid development of the new nations of Canada and the United States. They also added a rich and lasting cultural heritage to their newly adopted societies. Investigation of immigration and passenger lists has revealed a number of people bearing the name Tew:
Tew Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
Tew Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
Tew Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
Tew Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
Tew Settlers in Canada in the 19th Century
The Tew Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Tew Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.
This page was last modified on 21 February 2015 at 11:52.