This surname of GREENALF was a locational name 'of Greenhalgh', a township in the parish of Kirkham, County Lancashire. The name was derived from the Old English word GREENHOW, literally meaning the dweller at the settlement village. The name was a Norman name, and originally brought into England in the wake of the Norman Conquest. Early records of the name mention Richard de Grenhal, who was recorded in 1230 in Northumberland, and William de Grenol appears in Lancashire in 1246. Matill de Grenehalgh and William de Grenholl were both recorded in County Lancashire in the year 1332. Gilbert del Whithalgh of Preston in 1397. Arthur Greenhalgh of Heep, 1576, Wills at Chester. Jame Greenalgh of Cornerow in 1672.
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.
The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory in 1884. The arms were registered in Greenhalgh, Brandlesome and County Lancashire in 1664.
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