The surname of RITCHIE was a baptismal name 'the son of Richard'. A border surname sometimes curtailed from MacRitchie. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land, and indicated where he actually lived. Early records of the name mention Duncan Richie, who was a messenger in 1505, Perthshire. Robert Rechie was the kings sheriff of Inverness in the year 1512. The wife of David Reche in Aberdeen was fined for brewing ale in the year 1538. William Ritchie and Letitia Robertson were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1793. Alexander Ritchie was an Edinburgh artist of repute in the early half of the last century. At first the coat of arms was a practical matter which served a function on the battlefield and in tournaments. With his helmet covering his face, and armour encasing the knight from head to foot, the only means of identification for his followers, was the insignia painted on his shield, and embroidered on his surcoat, the draped and flowing garment worn over the armour. As early as the year 1100, it was quite common for English people to give French names to their children, and the earliest instances are found among the upper classes, both the clergy and the patrician families. The Norman-French names used were generally the names most commonly used by the Normans, who had introduced them into England during the Norman Invasion of William the Conqueror in 1066. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Registered at Craigtown, Scotland in 1758. A notable member of the name was William RITCHIE who founded the 'Scotsman' Newspaper in 1817. In the Middle Ages heraldry came into use as a practical matter. It originated in the devices used to distinguish the armoured warriors in tournament and war, and was also placed on seals as marks of identity. As far as records show, true heraldry began in the middle of the 12th century, and appeared almost simultaneously in several countries of Western Europe. The lion depicted in the arms is the noblest of all wild beasts which is made to be the emblem of strength and valour, and is on that account the most frequently borne in Coat-Armour.
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