This surname of GALLICHAN was a name given to a Frenchman who supported an independent French church. The name is also spelt as Galichon, Galichet, Gaillochet and Gallon. The name was rendered in early documents in the Latin form of CAVEOLA. The earliest French hereditary surnames are found in the 12th century, at more or less the same time as they arose in England, but they are by no means common before the 13th century, and it was not until the 15th century that they stabilized to any great extent; before then a surname might be handed down for two or three generations, but then abandoned in favour of another. In the south, many French surnames have come in from Italy over the centuries, and in Northern France, Germanic influence can often be detected. The name was introduced into England by the Normans in the form GALLON, and the name has been anglicized to Gale.
The associated coat of arms is recorded in Rietstaps Armorial General. Registered at Anjou, France. (Galichon).
The names introduced into Britain by the Normans during and in the wake of the Invasion of 1066, are nearly all territorial in origin. The followers of William the Conqueror were a pretty mixed lot, and while some of them brought the names of their castles and villages in Normandy with them, many were adventurers of different nationalities attached to William's standard by the hope of plunder, and possessing no family or territorial names of their own. Those of them who acquired lands in England were called by their manors, while others took the name of the offices they held or the military titles given to them, and sometimes, a younger son of a Norman landowner, on receiving a grant of land in his new home dropped his paternal name and adopted that of his newly acquired property. Early records of the name mention Johanna del Gayle, listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379. Thomas le Galeis was documented in Yorkshire in the year of 1400.
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