Thien History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

The history of the Thien family name begins after the Norman Conquest of 1066. They lived in Shropshire. The name, however, is a strange contraction of the phrase of the Inn, resulting from the fact that an early member of the family was the proprietor of such an establishment. "The name is derived from the mansion or inn at Stretton, in the county of Salop, (Shropshire) to which the freehold lands of the family, with various detached copyholds, were attached. " [1]

Early Origins of the Thien family

The surname Thien was first found in Shropshire where they were Lords of the Manor of Church Stretton. Traditionally, the name was originally Botfield or Botville, and Geoffrey and Oliver Bouteville came into England from a distinguished family in Pictou in France about 1180. [1] [2]

"The appearance of this name on the Abbey Roll seems sadly at variance with the statement of Matthew Paris, who records that the first of the Botevilles who came to England were two brothers, both of knightly rank, Geoffrey and Oliver Boteville, who brought a body of foreign auxiliaries from Poitou and Gascone, to assist King John against his rebellious barons. Sir Geoffrey, the elder brother, appears to have received a grant of the lands of William D'Albini, Earl of Arundel, at Shelton, in Shropshire, and was constituted Governor of Belvoir Castle. From his grandson, John Botevile, recorded among the knights of Shropshire, present at the siege of Caerlaverock Castle, derived John Botevile, who, from his residence in one of the Inns of Court, acquired the soubriquet of "John of th' Inne," and thence came the surname of Thynne, as now borne by John's descendant, the Marquee of Bath. The Botfeilds, of Hopton Court. co. Salop, and Norton Hall, co. Northampton, who formerly spelt their name Botevile, deduce their line from the old knightly race." [3]

Another source confirms the Boteville, Thynne relationship noted above. [2] Ironically the two names which are not phonetically similar which is usually the case became interchangeable, bearing the same history.

Early History of the Thien family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thien research. Another 94 words (7 lines of text) covering the years 1547, 1546, 1578, 1639, 1601, 1629, 1605, 1670, 1640, 1670, 1610, 1669, 1660, 1640, 1714, 1544 and 1608 are included under the topic Early Thien History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Thien 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 Botfield, Botville, Boteville, Botfeld, Botevile, Thynne, Tyne, Tine, Tynes, O'Tyne, Thinn, O'Thinn, Thin, Then, Them and many more.

Early Notables of the Thien family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was William Thynne (d. 1546), editor of Chaucer's works who claimed to have been younger son of John de la Inne. "His family bore the alternative surname of Botfield or Boteville, and he is often called 'Thynne alias Boteville.' " [4] Sir Thomas Thynne (ca. 1578-1639), of Longleat, Wiltshire, was an English landowner and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1601 and 1629; Sir James...
Another 75 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Thien Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Thien family to Ireland

Some of the Thien family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 59 words (4 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Thien migration to the United States +

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 Thien or a variant listed above were:

Thien Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • John H Thien, aged 32, who arrived in Missouri in 1841 [5]

Contemporary Notables of the name Thien (post 1700) +

  • Margot Thien, American synchronized swimmer


The Thien 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: J'ai bonne cause
Motto Translation: I have good reason.


  1. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  2. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
  3. ^ Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  4. ^ Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  5. ^ Filby, P. William, Meyer, Mary K., Passenger and immigration lists index : a guide to published arrival records of about 500,000 passengers who came to the United States and Canada in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. 1982-1985 Cumulated Supplements in Four Volumes Detroit, Mich. : Gale Research Co., 1985, Print (ISBN 0-8103-1795-8)


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