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An excerpt from archives copyright 2000 - 2016

Thurlow is one of the many names that the Normans brought with them when they conquered England in 1066. The Thurlow family lived in Suffolk, at Thurlow which was in turn derived from the Old English word tryohlaw, meaning dweller by the hill.


The surname Thurlow was first found in Suffolk where they held a family seat as Lords of the Manor of Thurlow. Conjecturally, they are descended from Godric, the holder of the King's lands of Great and Little Thurlow at the time of the taking of the Domesday Book in 1086, a census initiated by King William, Duke of Normandy after his conquest of England in 1066. The village at that time consisted of a Church and 33 goats. Today Little Thurlow is a village and civil parish in the St Edmundsbury district and has a population of about 230 as of 2005.

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 Thurlow, Thurlough, Thurlowe, Thurloe, Thurlo, Thurlows, Thurles and many more.


This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Thurlow research. Another 169 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1775 and are included under the topic Early Thurlow History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


More information is included under the topic Early Thurlow Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


Some of the Thurlow family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. Another 87 words (6 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


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 Thurlow name or one of its variants:

Thurlow Settlers in United States in the 19th Century

  • Henry G Thurlow, who arrived in Allegany (Allegheny) County, Pennsylvania in 1875

Thurlow Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century

  • John Thurlow, aged 21, arrived in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship "Osceola"

  • Stephen Charles "Steve" Thurlow (b. 1942), former American NFL football running back who played from 1964 to 1968
  • Alec Thurlow, English football goalkeeper who played from 1946 to 1949 for Manchester City
  • The Very Rev Alfred Gilbert Goddard Thurlow (1911-1991), Anglican dean and author, Dean of Gloucester (1972-1982)
  • Thomas Thurlow (1737-1791), English bishop, Bishop of Lincoln (1779-1787) and Bishop of Durham (1787-1791)
  • Clifford Thurlow (b. 1952), English journalist, described by some as "one of the UK's best ghostwriters"
  • Edward Thurlow (1731-1806), 1st Baron Thurlow, English politician, Lord Chancellor of Great Britain for fourteen years, eponym of the West and East Thurlow Islands, British Columbia, so named by Captain George Vancouver
  • Thomas Thurlow (1813-1899), renowned English sculptor, known for his many works in churches in the Saxmundham, Suffolk area
  • Gillian Thurlow, New Zealand former association football player who played for the New Zealand National Team in 1994
  • Bryan Alfred Thurlow (1936-2002), British former professional footballer who played in the 1950s
  • Jackson Thurlow (b. 1994), Australian rules footballer
  • ...

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: Justitiae soror fides
Motto Translation: Fidelity is the sister of justice.


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    Other References

    1. Thirsk, Joan. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press: 7 Volumes. Print.
    2. Magnusson, Magnus. Chambers Biographical Dictionary 5th edition. Edinburgh: W & R Chambers, 1990. Print.
    3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin . Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
    4. The Norman People and Their Existing Descendants in the British Dominions and the United States Of America. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1975. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-0636-X).
    5. Leeson, Francis L. Dictionary of British Peerages. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0-8063-1121-5).
    6. Foster, Joseph. Dictionary of Heraldry Feudal Coats of Arms and Pedigrees. London: Bracken Books, 1989. Print. (ISBN 1-85170-309-8).
    7. Hanks, Hodges, Mills and Room. The Oxford Names Companion. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. (ISBN 0-19-860561-7).
    8. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds. Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8).
    9. Bowman, George Ernest. The Mayflower Reader A Selection of Articales from The Mayflower Descendent. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    10. Burke, John Bernard Ed. The Roll of Battle Abbey. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing. Print.
    11. ...

    The Thurlow Family Crest was acquired from the archives. The Thurlow 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 7 December 2015 at 13:13.

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