Worthington Coat of Arms / Worthington Family Crest
This surname of WORTHINGTON was derived from the Old English WORTHY, meaning a place or farm of the family Worthy. It was also a locational name 'of Worthington' a township in the parish of Standish, County Lancashire. Early records of the name mention Snarri de Wurointona of London in 1169. William de Worthington of the County of Lancashire in 1246. Edward Worthingtone was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377) and Johannes de Worthington was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Thomas Worthyngtone was recorded in the same document. A later instance of the name records that John Hollywell and Joyce Worthington were married at St. Dionis Backchurch, London in the year 1616. Originally the coat of arms identified the wearer, either in battle or in tournaments. Completely covered in body and facial armour the knight could be spotted and known by the insignia painted on his shield, and embroidered on his surcoat, the draped garment which enveloped him. Between the 11th and 15th centuries it became customary for surnames to be assumed in Europe, but were not commonplace in England or Scotland before the Norman Conquest of 1066. They are to be found in the Domesday Book of 1086. Those of gentler blood assumed surnames at this time, but it was not until the reign of Edward II (1307-1327) that second names became general practice for all people. 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. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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