Show ContentsWaynflete History, Family Crest & Coats of Arms

Early Origins of the Waynflete family

The surname Waynflete was first found in Lincolnshire at Wainfleet, a market-town, in the union of Spilsby, Marsh division of the wapentake of Candleshoe. Wainfleet All Saints and Wainfleet St. Mary were collectively listed as Wenflet in the Domesday Book of 1086, the first recording of the place name. [1] Hence, conjecturally, the surname is descended from the tenant of the lands of Wainfleet, once a seaport, now five miles from the sea, by several Norman nobles including the Bishop of Durham, Earl Hugh, Gilbert de Ghent, Gocylin de Ghent who were recorded in the Domesday Book census of 1086. The village was noted for its salt production and held 27 salt pans.

William of Wayneflete or Wainfleet (1395?-1486), was Bishop of Winchester, Lord Chancellor of England, and founder of Magdalen College, Oxford. "In 1497, it appears that Waynflete held the manor and manor-house of Dakenham Place, Barkinge. This deed points to Essex as the home of at least one branch of the family, and corroborates the inference which may be drawn from other data that the bishop was of gentle blood. " [2]

Early History of the Waynflete family

This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Waynflete research. Another 64 words (5 lines of text) covering the years 1180, 1461 and 1447 are included under the topic Early Waynflete History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.

Waynflete Spelling Variations

A multitude of spelling variations characterize Norman surnames. Many variations occurred because Old and Middle English lacked any definite spelling rules. The introduction of Norman French to England also had a pronounced effect, as did the court languages of Latin and French. Therefore, one person was often referred to by several different spellings in a single lifetime. The various spellings include Wainfleet, Waynfleet, Waynflete, Wainflete and others.

Early Notables of the Waynflete family (pre 1700)

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

Migration of the Waynflete family

Many English families left England, to avoid the chaos of their homeland and migrated to the many British colonies abroad. Although the conditions on the ships were extremely cramped, and some travelers arrived diseased, starving, and destitute, once in the colonies, many of the families prospered and made valuable contributions to the cultures of what would become the United States and Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America has revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Waynflete or a variant listed above: settlers were recorded from the mid 17th century in the great migration from Europe. Migrants settled in the eastern seaboard from Newfoundland, to Maine, to Florida, and to the islands..



  1. Mills, A.D., Dictionary of English Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991. Print. (ISBN 0-19-869156-4)
  2. Smith, George (ed), Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co., 1885-1900. Print


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