When the ancestors of the Tofton family emigrated to England
following the Norman Conquest
in 1066 they brought their family name with them. They lived in Sussex
having derived from the Old English words toft,
meaning cluster of trees or bushes,
meaning enclosure or settlement.
Early Origins of the Tofton family
The surname Tofton was first found in Sussex
where they held a family seat
as Lords of the Manor. The name was originally De Toketon and the first of the name is recorded as Elphgege de Toketon about the year 1160. Sir Lewis
de Tufton was a Commander of the Army at Cresci. The family moved from Sussex
and acquired lands in Rainham which was known as Tuftons. "The church [of Hothfield, Kent] is an ancient edifice, containing some old and costly monuments to the Tufton family." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Tofton family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Tofton research.Another 323 words (23 lines of text) covering the years 1626, 1628, 1849, 1622, 1900, 1578, 1631, 1584, 1659, 1640, 1648, 1608, 1664, 1631, 1679, 1664, 1638, 1680, 1679, 1640, 1684, 1680, 1644, 1729, 1688, 1753 and 1729 are included under the topic Early Tofton History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Tofton Spelling Variations
The English language only became standardized in the last few centuries. For that reason, spelling variations
are common among many Anglo-Norman names. The shape of the English language was frequently changed with the introduction of elements of Norman French, Latin, and other European languages; even the spelling of literate people's names were subsequently modified. Tofton has been recorded under many different variations, including Tufton, Toughton, Tuffton, Tofton and others.
Early Notables of the Tofton family (pre 1700)
Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Nicholas Tufton, 1st Earl of Thanet (1578-1631) was an English peer who owned Bodiam Castle; Sir Humfrey Tufton, 1st Baronet
(1584-1659), an English politician, Member of Parliament for Maidstone (1640-1648); John Tufton, 2nd Earl of Thanet (1608-1664), an English nobleman and supporter of... Another 96 words (7 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Tofton Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Tofton family to the New World and Oceana
To escape the uncertainty of the political and religious uncertainty found in England
, many English families boarded ships at great expense to sail for the colonies held by Britain. The passages were expensive, though, and the boats were unsafe, overcrowded, and ridden with disease. Those who were hardy and lucky enough to make the passage intact were rewarded with land, opportunity, and social environment less prone to religious and political persecution. Many of these families went on to be important contributors to the young nations of Canada and the United States where they settled. Toftons were some of the first of the immigrants to arrive in North America: Richard Tuftin who settled in Nevis in 1660; Symon Tufton landed in North America in 1659.
The Tofton 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: Ales volat propriis
Motto Translation: The bird flies to its kind.