The surname of LUCY was a locational name 'of Luci', a parish in the arrondissement of Neufchatel in Normandy, France. The name was borne by a young Sicilian maiden and an aged Roman widow, both martyred under Diocletian and venerated as saints. Local names derive from a place name, indicating where the man held land, or the place from which he had come, or where he actually lived. Many of the French place-names denote the seat of noble families, but many of the modern surnames merely indicate migration from a French place. The name was taken to Ireland by settlers from Oxfordshire, where it was spelt O'Luasaigh, mainly a County Cork name. 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. When the sparse Irish population began to increase it became necessary to broaden the base of personal identification by moving from single names to a more definite nomenclature. The prefix MAC was given to the father's christian name, or O to that of a grandfather or even earlier ancestor. 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 draped and flowing garment worn over the armour. Early records of the name mention Godfrey de Lucey of the County of Lincolnshire in 1273. Reginald de Lucy was listed in the Yorkshire Poll Tax of 1379.
A powerful Anglo-Norman family called Lucy, took their name from Luce in Orne, Normandy. Richard de Lucy (died 1179) was a baron and chief justiciary of England. He fought in Normandy and commanded the castle of Falaise, returning to England in 1140. His son Godfrey de Lucy (died 1204) became bishop of Winchester in 1189.
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