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Franklin Coat of Arms / Franklin Family Crest

Franklin Coat of Arms / Franklin Family Crest

The surname of FRANKLIN was derived from the Old English FRANKELEIN - an official name 'the franklin', a freeholder. The name was originally brought into England in the wake of the Norman Invasion of 1066. Occupational surnames originally denoted the actual occupation followed by the individual. At what period they became hereditary is a difficult problem. Many of the occupation names were descriptive and could be varied. In the Middle Ages, at least among the Christian population, people did not usually pursue specialized occupations exclusively to the extent that we do today, and they would, in fact, turn their hand to any form of work that needed to be done, particularly in a large house or mansion, or on farms and smallholdings. In early documents, surnames often refer to the actual holder of an office, whether the church or state. 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 Conquerer. It is known as the Domesday Book. Early records of the name mention Robert de Fraunkelyn of the County of Buckinghamshire in 1273. Simon le Fraunkeley was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Thomas Franclyn and Frideswide Watwood were married at St. Michael, Cornhill, London in 1561. Helen Franklen was baptised at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in 1582. Arms registered at Rainham, County Norfolk. The arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. In many parts of central and western Europe, hereditary surnames began to become fixed at around the 12th century, and have developed and changed slowly over the years. As society became more complex, and such matters as the management of tenure, and in particular the collection of taxes were delegated to special functionaries, it became imperative to distinguish a more complex system of nomenclature to differentiate one individual from another.


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last updated on: April 3rd, 2017

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