The surname of HILL has the associated arms recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. The first people in Scotland to acquire fixed surnames were the nobles and great landowners, who called themselves, or were called by others, after the lands they possessed. Surnames originating in this way are known as territorial. Formerly lords of baronies and regalities and farmers were inclined to magnify their importance and to sign letters and documents with the names of their baronies and farms instead of their Christian names and surnames. The abuse of this style of speech and writing was carried so far that an Act was passed in the Scots parliament in 1672 forbidding the practice and declaring that it was allowed only to noblemen and bishops to subscribe by their titles. William de la Hyll, was one of the earliest on record in Scotland in the year 1271. William de le Hille was received to the King of England's peace in 1321. John of Hille a native of Scotland had letters of naturalization in England in 1358. John de Hyll was chaplain of St. Giles Church, Edinburgh in 1426. An eminent member of the name was Rowland Hill, Ist Viscount (1772-1842) the English soldier born in Shropshire. He distinguished himself in Egypt, and under Wellington in the Peninsular War. At Waterloo (1815) he swept the Old Guard from the field, and in 1828, succeeded Wellington as commander-in-chief at home, but resigned in 1842. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. The arms were granted to James Matthew Hill, Edinburgh and Bengal in the year 1858. It has long been a matter of doubt when the bearing of coats of arms first became hereditary and it was not until the Crusades that Heraldry came into general use. 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.
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