Villars History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

When the ancestors of the Villars family emigrated to England following the Norman Conquest in 1066 they brought their family name with them. They lived in Villiers, Normandy, the family's place of residence prior to the Norman Conquest of England in 1066.

"The family are said to have come into England with the Conqueror, which is probable. There are at present six places in Normandy so called, besides a larger number called Villers, one of the numerous ways in which the surname is spelled. The Earl of Jersey's family trace to Alexander de Villiers, lord of Brokesby, co. Lancaster, early in the XIII, century. Sir Richard de Villars was a Crusader under Edward I., and hence the cross and escallop shells in the coat-armour of his descendants." [1]

The existing family of Villiers "claim to belong to the race of Villiers in Normandy, from which sprang Pierre de Villiers, Grand Master in the reign of Charles VI., and Jacques de Villiers, Provost of Paris and Mareschal of France in the same period." [2]

Early Origins of the Villars family

The surname Villars was first found in Leicestershire where they held a family seat as Lords of the manor of Rokesby from the time of the Norman Conquest of England by Duke William in 1066 A.D. Galderfridus de Villers of St. Evroult, accompanied Duke William into England with his son, Pagan de Villiers, who obtained the barony of Warrington in Lancashire and was also Lord of Crosby in that same shire.

Interestingly, "the present coat of arms is said to have been assumed in the reign of Edward I., as a badge of Sir Richard de Villars' services in the crusades." [3] The previous shield was "Sable, three cinquefoils argent."

"Michael de Valers was summoned from Gloucester in 1300, for military service in Scotland." [2]

Early History of the Villars family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Villars research. Another 130 words (9 lines of text) covering the years 1485, 1544, 1531, 1532, 1537, 1538, 1539, 1550, 1606, 1574, 1626, 1621, 1625, 1620, 1689, 1656, 1711, 1591, 1657, 1592, 1628, 1628, 1687, 1682, 1721, 1654, 1693 and 1907 are included under the topic Early Villars History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Villars Spelling Variations

Spelling variations in names were a common occurrence in the eras before English spelling was standardized a few hundred years ago. In the Middle Ages, even the literate regularly changed the spellings of their names as the English language incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other European languages. Many variations of the name Villars have been found, including Villers, Villiers, Villieres, Vilers, Viliers, Vilieres, Villars, Villere, Viller, Villier, Villiere, Viler, Vilier, Viliere, Villar, Villere, Devillieres and many more.

Early Notables of the Villars family (pre 1700)

Outstanding amongst the family at this time was Sir John Villers of Brooksby; and his son, Sir John Villers (1485-1544), of Brooksby Hall, Leicestershire, an English politician, High Sheriff of Warwickshire and Leicestershire for 1531-1532 and 1537-1538, Member of the Parliament for Leicestershire in 1539; Sir George Villiers, of Brokesby (1550-1606), member of the English gentry; Sir Edward Villiers (c. 1574-1626), an English diplomat, office-holder and politician who sat in the House of Commons...
Another 74 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Villars Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Ireland Migration of the Villars family to Ireland

Some of the Villars family moved to Ireland, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.
Another 104 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.


United States Villars migration to the United States +

For many English families, the social climate in England was oppressive and lacked opportunity for change. For such families, the shores of Ireland, Australia, and the New World beckoned. They left their homeland at great expense in ships that were overcrowded and full of disease. Many arrived after the long voyage sick, starving, and without a penny. But even those were greeted with greater opportunity than they could have experienced back home. Numerous English settlers who arrived in the United States and Canada at this time went on to make important contributions to the developing cultures of those countries. Many of those families went on to make significant contributions to the rapidly developing colonies in which they settled. Early North American records indicate many people bearing the name Villars were among those contributors:

Villars Settlers in United States in the 18th Century
  • Jean Villars, who settled in Louisiana in 1756
  • George Villars, aged 32, who arrived in Virginia in 1777 [4]
Villars Settlers in United States in the 19th Century
  • A Villars, aged 25, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1822 [4]
  • John Villars, aged 30, who arrived in New Orleans, La in 1823 [4]
  • Marino Villars, aged 16, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1825 [4]
  • Francisco Villars, aged 45, who landed in New Orleans, La in 1831 [4]

Contemporary Notables of the name Villars (post 1700) +

  • Anthony Keith "Tony" Villars (b. 1952), Welsh former international footballer
  • Claude Louis Hector Villars (1653-1734), French soldier


The Villars 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: Fidei coticula crux
Motto Translation: The cross is the test of truth.


  1. ^ Lower, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. 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. ^ Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
  4. ^ 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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