This surname of MIRFIELD is of the locational group of surnames 'of Merrifield' a parish near Atherstone, County Leicestershire. The site of Salisbury Cathedral is so called in medieval documents being a corruption of St. Mary's Field.
The name was documented as MIRIFELD in Yorkshire in the year 1180, and as MIREFIELD in 1146. The associated coat of arms is recorded in Sir Bernard Burkes General Armory. Ulster King of Arms in 1884. Since the dawn of civilisation the need to communicate has been a prime drive of all higher mankind. The more organised the social structure became, the more urgent the need to name places, objects and situations essential to the survival and existence of the social unit. From this common stem arose the requirements to identify families, tribes and individual members evolving into a pattern in evidence today. In the formation of this history, common usage of customs, trades, locations, patronymic and generic terms were often adopted as surnames. The demands of bureaucracy formally introduced by feudal lords in the 11th century, to define the boundaries and families within their fiefdoms, crystallized the need for personal identification and accountability, and surnames became in general use from this time onwards.
Other records of the name mention John de Merefield, County Somerset, 1273. Lovecok de Murifield of County Somerset, was documented during the reign of Edward III (1327-1377). Richard Merefeild and Sislie Skeles, were married at St. Aldermary, London in the year 1582. Edward Merefeeld and Anne Foden were married at St. Peter, Cornhill, London in 1584. William Merryfield and Maria Harpley were married at St. George's, Hanover Square, London in 1765, and Nicholas Merrifill and Mary Wright were married at the same church in 1781. 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.
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