The Umfrey surname comes from the Old French personal name
Humfrey, a cognate of the Old German names Hunfrid and Humfrid. This name was originally derived from the Germanic elements "hun," which means "bear cub," and "frid" or "fred," which mean "peace." It was borne by a 9th century saint and Bishop of Therouanne, who was popular among Norman settlers of England.
Early Origins of the Umfrey family
The surname Umfrey was first found in Denbighshire
(Welsh: Sir Ddinbych), a historic county in Northeast Wales
created by the Laws in Wales
Act 1536, where they held a family seat
from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy
, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.
Early History of the Umfrey family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Umfrey research.Another 171 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1069, 1391, 1447, 1714, 1579, 1647, 1674, 1621, 1719, 1662, 1648, 1712, 1701, 1712, 1735 and are included under the topic Early Umfrey History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Umfrey Spelling Variations
There are relatively few surnames native to Wales
, but they have an inordinately large number of spelling variations
. Early variations of Welsh
surnames can be explained by the fact that very few people in the early Middle Ages were literate. Priests and the few other literate people were responsible for recording names in official documents. And because most people could not specific how to properly record their names it was up to the individual recorder of that time to determine how a spoken name should be recorded. Variations due to the imprecise or improper recording of a name continued later in history when names originally composed in the Brythonic Celtic
, language of Wales, known by natives as Cymraeg, were transliterated into English. Welsh
names that were documented in English often changed dramatically since the native language of Wales, which was highly inflected, did not copy well. Occasionally, however, spelling variations
were carried out according to an individual's specific design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations could be indicated by minor variations. The spelling variations of the name Umfrey have included Humphreys, Homfray, Humfrey, Humfrie, Humfries, Humfreys, Humphereys, Humphries, Humphrays, Humphray, Humphrey, Humphris, Humphry, Humphryes and many more.
Early Notables of the Umfrey family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Humphrey (1391-1447), the son of King Henry IV, who was Duke of Gloucester and Earl of Pembroke, and also a patron of letters; Sir William Humphreys, Lord Mayor of London in 1714; William Humfrey (died 1579) English goldsmith and Assay Master... Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Umfrey Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Umfrey family to Ireland
Some of the Umfrey family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 101 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 Umfrey family to the New World and Oceana
During the latter half of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, the people of Wales
journeyed to North America to find a new life. They made major contributions to the arts, industry and commerce of both Canada and the United States, and added a rich cultural heritage to their newly adopted societies. A look at the immigration and passenger lists has shown a number of people bearing the name Umfrey: Richard Humfrey, who was one of the settlers left at Roanoke, Virginia in 1584 by Sir Walter Raleigh; John Humfrey, who was on record in Massachusetts in 1629.
The Umfrey 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: L'homme vrai aime son pays
Motto Translation: The true man loves his country.