The surname of JELLY was a baptismal name 'the daughter of Julianna'. This name is a corruption of Jelley. Following the Crusades in Europe in the 11th 12th and 13th centuries, a need was felt for a family name in addition to the one that had been given at birth. This was recognized by those of noble blood, as it added prestige and practical advantage to their status. Early records of the name mention Myles Jelyan and Agnes Smyth who were married at St. James's, Clerkenwell, London in the year 1570. William Jelley and Iland Cross were married at the same church in 1610. John Jelley married Joyce Whitehead at St.George's, Hanover Square, London in the year 1784. The associated arms are recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. Many factors contributed to the establishment of a surname system. For generations after the Norman Conquest of 1066 a very few dynasts and magnates passed on hereditary surnames, but the main of the population, with a wide choice of first-names out of Celtic, Old English, Norman and Latin, avoided ambiguity without the need for a second name. As society became more stabilized, there was property to leave in wills, the towns and villages grew and the labels that had served to distinguish a handful of folk in a friendly village were not adequate for a teeming slum where perhaps most of the householders were engaged in the same monotonous trade, so not even their occupations could distinguish them, and some first names were gaining a tiresome popularity, especially Thomas after 1170. The hereditary principle in surnames gained currency first in the South, and the poorer folk were slower to apply it. By the 14th century however, most of the population had acquired a second name. The name was taken to Scotland by settlers and Thomas Jelle held a tenement in Ayr in 1518. William Jellie is recorded in Cruikens, parish of Carnwath in 1673. Andrew Jellie and his wife were residents in the parish of Borgue, 1684, and William Jelly was a mariner in Creetown in 1798.
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