The surname of ROY was a descriptive surname derived from the personal appearance of the first bearer, from the Gaelic 'ruadh' meaning 'red'. Alba, the country which became Scotland, was once shared by four races; the Picts who controlled most of the land north of the Central Belt; the Britons, who had their capital at Dumbarton and held sway over the south west, including modern Cumbria; the Angles, who were Germanic in origin and annexed much of the Eastern Borders in the seventh century, and the Scots. The latter came to Alba from the north of Ireland late in the 5th century to establish a colony in present day Argyll, which they named Dalriada, after their homeland. The Latin name SCOTTI simply means a Gaelic speaker. Early records of the name mention a remission by James I to Donald Ruffus (i.e. ruadh). Moritius Roy was witness in Perth in the reign of James II, 1685-1688. Hugh, twelfth Lord Fraser of Lovat was surnamed 'Husten Roy' (Red Hugh), from the colour of his hair. John Roy of Inverness in 1563. Since the dawn of civilisation the need to communicate has been a prime drive of all higher mankind. The more organised the social structure became, the more urgent the need to name places, objects and situations essential to the survival and existence of the social unit. From this common stem arose the requirements to identify families, tribes and individual members evolving into a pattern in evidence today. In the formation of this history, common usage of customs, trades, locations, patronymic and generic terms were often adopted as surnames. The demands of bureaucracy formally introduced by feudal lords in the 11th century, to define the boundaries and families within their fiefdoms, crystallized the need for personal identification and accountability, and surnames became in general use from this time onwards. A later record of the name in England was Richard Roys and Mary Marsh, who were married at St. Aldermary, London in the year 1720. The associated arms are recorded in Burkes General Armory. Arms registered in Scotland.
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