The surname of BARLOWS was a locational name 'of Barlow' a place near Manchester. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land and indicated where he actually lived. In the middle ages it was normal for a man to be named after the village where he held his land. This name identified his whole family, and followed them wherever they moved.
Early records of the name mention William de Barlowe, documented in County Lancashire in the year 1273, Johannes de Berlowe, of Yorkshire was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Henry Barlow of County Derbyshire, registered at Oxford University in 1584. George Barlow of Manchester was listed in the Wills at Chester in the year 1620. John Barlow married Mary Tolley, St. Dionis Backchurch, London in 1656. 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 flowing and draped garment worn over the armour.
Surnames before the Norman Conquest of 1066 were rare in England having been brought by the Normans when William the Conqueror invaded the shores. The practice spread to Scotland and Ireland by the 12th century, and in Wales they appeared as late as the 16th century. Most surnames can be traced to one of four sources, locational, from the occupation of the original bearer, nicknames or simply font names based on the first name of the parent being given as the second name to their child.
The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernards Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884.
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