Show ContentsVere History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Vere is one of the thousands of new names that the Norman Conquest brought to England in 1066. The Vere family lived in Essex, but the family can trace their roots much farther back. They were originally from Ver, near Bayeux, Normandy where it was from the local form of this place-name, de Ver. Their surname literally translates as from Ver. [1]

"No prouder name than De Vere has graced the annals of our English baronage; none has been borne by a longer succession of Earls; none has been more magnificently extolled, or more eloquently lamented. Its very sound is aristocratic, and carries with it the memory of its 567 years of nobility." [2]

Early Origins of the Vere family

The surname Vere was first found in Essex 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. In the Domesday Book, [3]

Aubrey (Albericus) de Vere (died c. 1112) was a tenant-in-chief in England of William the Conqueror in 1086 and progenitor of the Earls of Oxford. He was one of the great landowners of England and held his castle from the King at Hedingham in Essex. He also held Kensington a suburb of London. [4]

The first Earl of Oxford was Aubrey de Vere, (c. 1115-1194.) His son Robert de Vere (c. 1165-1221), 3rd Earl of Oxford was hereditary Master Chamberlain of England and was one of the guarantors of Magna Carta. This line of earls continued until Aubrey de Vere, 20th Earl of Oxford (1627-1703.) Lavenham, Suffolk, became the home of the family of the Earls of Oxford.

"The church was rebuilt in the reign of Henry VI., partly by the De Veres, earls of Oxford, who resided here, and partly by the family of Spring, wealthy clothiers. The entrance is by a porch, supposed to have been erected by John de Vere (1442-1513), the fourteenth earl of Oxford, and much enriched; over the arch is a finely-sculptured double niche, and on each side of the niche are three escutcheons, each bearing quartered coats of arms of the De Vere family." [5]

Early History of the Vere family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Vere research. Another 119 words (8 lines of text) covering the years 1212, 1385, 1338, 1400, 1385, 1417, 1408, 1462, 1462, 1499, 1526, 1482, 1540, 1516, 1562, 1550, 1604, 1593, 1625, 1575, 1632, 1627 and 1703 are included under the topic Early Vere History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Vere Spelling Variations

Multitudes of spelling variations are a hallmark of Anglo Norman names. Most of these names evolved in the 11th and 12th century, in the time after the Normans introduced their own Norman French language into a country where Old and Middle English had no spelling rules and the languages of the court were French and Latin. To make matters worse, medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, so names frequently appeared differently in the various documents in which they were recorded. The name was spelled DeVere, DeVera, Dever, Devere, Vere, Ver, Vaire and many more.

Early Notables of the Vere family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Robert de Vere, Earl of Oxford, who was made Marquess of Dublin in 1385 by King Richard II; Aubrey de Vere, 10th Earl of Oxford (c. 1338-1400); Richard de Vere, 11th Earl of Oxford (1385?-1417); John de Vere, 12th Earl of Oxford (1408-1462), he was convicted of high treason and beheaded on Tower Hill on 26 February 1462; John de Vere, 14th Earl of Oxford (1499-1526), an English peer and landowner...
Another 78 words (6 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Vere Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Vere family to Ireland

Some of the Vere family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt. More information about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

United States Vere migration to the United States +

Because of this political and religious unrest within English society, many people decided to immigrate to the colonies. Families left for Ireland, North America, and Australia in enormous numbers, traveling at high cost in extremely inhospitable conditions. The New World in particular was a desirable destination, but the long voyage caused many to arrive sick and starving. Those who made it, though, were welcomed by opportunities far greater than they had known at home in England. Many of these families went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations of Canada and the United States. Analysis of immigration records indicates that some of the first North American immigrants bore the name Vere or a variant listed above:

Vere Settlers in United States in the 17th Century
  • Horatio Vere, who landed in Virginia in 1657 [6]
Vere Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Cecilly Vere, who arrived in America in 1760-1763 [6]
  • William Vere, who arrived in Virginia in 1771 [6]

Australia Vere migration to Australia +

Emigration to Australia followed the First Fleets of convicts, tradespeople and early settlers. Early immigrants include:

Vere Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century
  • James Vere, aged 34, who arrived in South Australia in 1849 aboard the ship "Prince Regent" [7]
  • james Vere, aged 34, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [7]
  • Johanna Vere, aged 29, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [7]
  • Elizabeth Vere, aged 3, who arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Prince Regent" in 1849 [7]

Contemporary Notables of the name Vere (post 1700) +

  • Sir Horace Vere (1565-1635), 1st Baron Vere of Tilbury, English soldier
  • Sir Francis Vere (1560-1609), English soldier
  • Peter Vere -Jones ONZM (1939-2021), New Zealand actor, known for his collaborations with director Peter Jackson
  • Charles Broke Vere (1779-1843), British soldier and Member of Parliament
  • Sir Charles Vere Gunning (b. 1859), 7th Baronet of Eltham in the County of Kent, English peer
  • George Vere Irving (1815-1869), Scottish lawyer and antiquary, only son of Alexander Irving of Newton, Lanarkshire, afterwards a Scottish judge with the title of Lord Newton
  • Sir Henry Vere Huntley (1795-1864), English naval officer and colonial administrator, 11th Governor of Prince Edward Island (1841-1847) [8]
  • Roger Vere McNeice OAM FRNS, Australian numismatist, historian, and coin collector
  • Colonel Stafford Vere Hotchkin MC MP (1876-1953), English landowner, officer and politician, Member of Parliament for Horncastle (1920–1922), High Sheriff of Rutland
  • Major-General Sir George Vere Kemball KCMG, CB, DSO, R.A. (1859-1941), British Army officer

The Vere 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: Vero nihil verius
Motto Translation: Nothing truer than truth.

  1. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print
  2. Cleveland, Dutchess of The Battle Abbey Roll with some Account of the Norman Lineages. London: John Murray, Abermarle Street, 1889. Print. Volume 3 of 3
  3. Williams, Dr Ann. And G.H. Martin, Eds., Domesday Book A Complete Translation. London: Penguin, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0-141-00523-8)
  4. Burke, John Bernard, The Roll of Battle Abbey. London: Edward Churton, 26, Holles Street, 1848, Print.
  5. Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
  6. 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)
  7. State Records of South Australia. (Retrieved 2010, November 5) "PRINCE REGENT" 1849. Retrieved from
  8. Wikisource contributors. "Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900." Wikisource . Wikisource , 4 Jun. 2018. Web. 7 August 2020 on Facebook