The surname of COLVILL was a locational name 'of Coleville' a spot in France. The name was brought to England with the Norman Conquest of 1066. Early records of the name mention William de Colevile, listed as a tenant in the Domesday Book of 1086. Many of the early names recorded in medieval documents denote noble families but many also indicate migration from the continent during, and in the wake of, the Norman invasion of 1066. There was a constant stream of merchants, workmen and others arriving in England during this time. In 1086 the Record of Great Inquisition of lands of England, their extent, value, ownership and liabilities was made by order of William The Conqueror. It is known as the Domesday Book. William Coleville, was documented in County Lancashire in the year 1142. The first of the name recorded in Scotland is Philips de Coleuille who witnessed a confirmation charter of all the donations to the monastery of Dunfermline in or before the year 1159. Thomas de Colevill appears in 1181, and is a witness to a number of documents in the last decade of the 12th century. Thomas de Colouilla was charged with treason in 1211, and Ada de Coleuyll gave the lands of Kynnard in Fife to the Abbey and monks of Neubotle in 1241. Robert de Colvylle of Scotland, for his courage and steady obedience to England was granted an annuity of 20 marks. During the Middle Ages, when people were unable to read or write signs were needed for all visual identification. For several centuries city streets in Britain were filled with signs of all kinds, public houses, tradesmen and even private householders found them necessary. This was an age when there were no numbered houses, and an address was a descriptive phrase that made use of a convenient landmark. At this time, coats of arms came into being, for the practical reason that men went into battle heavily armed and were difficult to recognise. It became the custom for them to adorn their helmets with distinctive crests, and to paint their shields with animals and the like. Coats of arms accompanied the development of surnames, becoming hereditary in the same way. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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