The ancestors of the bearers of the Westhay family name are thought have lived in ancient Anglo-Saxon England
. They were first found in Devon
. The name Westhay is derived from the fact that the original bearer of the name came from the west.
This rather general nickname
could be an indication that the person moved from the west to where he received the name, or that he lived in the western portion of some area such as a county or parish.
Early Origins of the Westhay family
The surname Westhay was first found in Devon
, where the family "are remarkable, not so much for the antiquity of the family as for the early period at which they attained the honour of the peerage. Sir Thomas West is the first recorded ancestor; he died in the seventeenth of Edward II., having married the heiress of Cantilupe, and thus became possessed of the lands in Devonshire, and at Smitterfield in Warwickshire." CITATION[CLOSE]
Shirley, Evelyn Philip, The Noble and Gentle Men of England; The Arms and Descents. Westminster: John Bower Nichols and Sons, 1866, Print.
Another reference states "the noble family (Earl Delawarr) ... wrote themselves De West; not it appears, from any place so called, but from their large possessions in the West of England." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lowe, Mark Anthony, Patronymica Britannica, A Dictionary of Family Names of the United Kingdom. London: John Russel Smith, 1860. Print.
Later some of the family held estates at Aughton in the West Riding of Yorkshire
. "This place, called in Domesday Book
Actone, Hactone, and Hacstone, was formerly the residence of the family of West, of whom was Sir William West, a soldier in the army of Henry VIII., and who had, in reward for his services, beneficial grants of abbey lands: the family resided here till the latter end of the reign of Elizabeth." CITATION[CLOSE]
Lewis, Samuel, A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research, 1848, Print.
Early History of the Westhay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Westhay research.Another 335 words (24 lines of text) covering the years 1570, 1365, 1405, 1312, 1386, 1386, 1399, 1401, 1399, 1402, 1642, 1636, 1674, 1660, 1556, 1601, 1590, 1659, 1635, 1637, 1632, 1691, 1670, 1716, 1710 and are included under the topic Early Westhay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Westhay Spelling Variations
Until quite recently, the English language has lacked a definite system of spelling rules. Consequently, Anglo-Saxon
surnames are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations
. Changes in Anglo-Saxon
names were influenced by the evolution of the English language, as it incorporated elements of French, Latin, and other languages. Although Medieval scribes and church officials recorded names as they sounded, so it is common to find one person referred to by several different spellings of his surname, even the most literate people varied the spelling of their own names. Variations of the name Westhay include West, Weste and others.
Early Notables of the Westhay family (pre 1700)
Distinguished members of the family include Thomas West, 1st Baron
West (1365-1405), only son of Sir Thomas West, of de Hampton Cantilupe (1312-1386), served alongside his father under Richard II; one of them was in active service in Calais in 1386, A knight banneret, he served in Ireland
with the Duke... Another 211 words (15 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Westhay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Westhay family to Ireland
Some of the Westhay family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 141 words (10 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 Westhay family to the New World and Oceana
Searching for a better life, many English families migrated to British colonies. Unfortunately, the majority of them traveled under extremely harsh conditions: overcrowding on the ships caused the majority of the immigrants to arrive diseased, famished, and destitute from the long journey across the ocean. For those families that arrived safely, modest prosperity was attainable, and many went on to make invaluable contributions to the development of the cultures of the new colonies. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Westhay or a variant listed above: Brient Weste settled in Newfoundland in 1730; Robert West was a merchant in St John's Newfoundland in 1794; Francis West settled in Virginia in 1608; 14 years before the ".
The Westhay 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: Jour de ma vie
Motto Translation: Day of my life, i.e. “Most glorious day of my life.”.