The surname Willat is derived from the diminutive form of the Old English personal name
"Will" or "William." Thus, the name refers to a "son of Willet."
Early Origins of the Willat family
The surname Willat was first found in Essex
, where the Willat family held a family seat
from very ancient times. Records of the name in Essex
and the surrounding shires date back to the Middle Ages, during the years immediately following the Norman Conquest.
Early History of the Willat family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Willat research.Another 217 words (16 lines of text) covering the years 1736, 1665, 1562, 1621, 1650, 1678, 1633, 1703, 1605 and 1674 are included under the topic Early Willat History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Willat Spelling Variations
of this family name include: Willet, Willett, Willhite, Willot, Willitt, Willets and many more.
Early Notables of the Willat family (pre 1700)
Notables of this surname at this time include: Andrew Willet (1562- 1621), an English clergyman and controversialist; Deborah "Deb" Willet (1650-1678), a young maid employed by Samuel Pepys (1633-1703) whose extramarital liaisons were chronicled... Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Willat Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Willat family to the New World and Oceana
Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Thomas Willet, who settled in Plymouth in 1630; Henry Willet, who settled in Virginia in 1640; as did George, Richard, John, and William Willet in 1652.
Contemporary Notables of the name Willat (post 1700)
- Irvin Willat (1890-1976), American film director of the silent film era who directed 39 films between 1917 and 1937
The Willat 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: Dieu et mon devoir
Motto Translation: God and my work.