The history of the Witnay family name begins after the Norman Conquest
of 1066. They lived in Herefordshire
, at the village of Whitney
Early Origins of the Witnay family
The surname Witnay was first found in Herefordshire
where Harold de Whitney held the Lordship of Whitney from St. Guthlac's Church.
Early History of the Witnay family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Witnay research.Another 89 words (6 lines of text) covering the years 1377, 1413 and 1436 are included under the topic Early Witnay History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Witnay Spelling Variations
Anglo-Norman names are characterized by a multitude of spelling variations
. When the Normans
became the ruling people of England
in the 11th century, they introduced a new language into a society where the main languages of Old and later Middle English had no definite spelling rules. These languages were more often spoken than written, so they blended freely with one another. Contributing to this mixing of tongues was the fact that medieval scribes spelled words according to sound, ensuring that a person's name would appear differently in nearly every document in which it was recorded. The name has been spelled Whitney, Witney and others.
Early Notables of the Witnay family (pre 1700)
Another 33 words (2 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Witnay Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Witnay family to Ireland
Some of the Witnay family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 87 words (6 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 Witnay family to the New World and Oceana
For many English families, the political and religious disarray that plagued their homeland made the frontiers of the New World an attractive prospect. Thousands migrated, aboard cramped disease-ridden ships. They arrived sick, poor, and hungry, but were welcomed in many cases with far greater opportunity than at home in England
. Many of these hardy settlers went on to make important contributions to the emerging nations in which they landed. Among early immigrants bearing the name Witnay or a variant listed above were: Joe Whitney and his son, who settled in New England
in 1635; John Whitney, who settled in Boston Massachusetts in 1635, along with Richard and Nathaniel.
The Witnay 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: Volens et valens
Motto Translation: Willing and able.