Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Burley Name
Origins of Burley:
This notable surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is locational from any of the different places so called, for example, Burley in Derbyshire, Rutland, Shropshire and the West Riding of Yorkshire. The name in all examples acquires from the Olde English pre 7th Century “burg,” a fort, and “leah,” a clearing in wood. So, “the clearing by a fort.” Locational surnames were originally derived by a local landowner, or by the lord of the estate, and especially by those old inhabitants of a place who moved to another area, usually in search of work, and were there best recognized by the name of their birthplace.
More common variations are: Bourley, Buerley, Baurley, Buirley, Buhrley, Bhurley, Burliey, Burhley, Burleyh, Burrley.
The surname Burley first appeared in Somerset where Burley Castle where a motte and bailey castle of the late 11th or early 12th century remains to this day. The village and civil church Burley, or Burley-on-the-Hill, is located two miles north- east of Oakham in Rutland. Burleigh Castle existed near the hamlet of Milnathort, in Perth and Kinross, Scotland and dates from the 15th and 16th centuries. It was held by the Balfours from 1446. Burleigh is also a village in Berkshire, England, within the civil church of Warfield.
The very first recording spelling of the family was shown to be that of John de Borleg, dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls of Shropshire”. It was during the reign of King Edward 1, who was known as “The Hammer of the Scots” dated 1272-1307. Surname all over the country became a necessity with the introduction of personal taxation. It came to be known as Poll Tax in England. Surnames all over the country began to develop with unique and shocking spelling varieties of the original one.
Many of the people with surname Burley had moved to Ireland during the 17th century.
United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Burley landed in the United States in three different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, and 19th. Some of the people with the name Burley who arrived in the United States in the 17th century included Timothy Burley, who arrived in Virginia in 1622. Rodger Burley settled in Virginia in 1635. Rodger Burley, aged 17, landed in Virginia in 1635.
People with the surname Burley who landed in the United States in the 18th century included Hugh Burley, who landed in Virginia in 1705
The following century saw more Burley surnames arrive. Some of the people with the surname Burley who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included C. Burley settled in Baltimore Maryland in 1820.
People with the surname Burley who landed in the Canada in the 18th century included Fredk Burley, who landed in Nova Scotia in 1749. Fredk, Burley Jr., who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749. Mr. Freeman Burley U.E. who settled in Ernestown, Lennox & Addington, Ontario c. 1783.
The following century saw more Burley surnames arrive. Some of the people with the surname Burley who arrived in the Canada in the 19th century included Ezekiel Burley who came to Canada in 1840.
Some of the individuals with the surname Burley who landed in Australia in the 19th century included Robert Burley arrived in Holdfast Bay, Australia aboard the ship “Katherine Stewart Forbes” in 1837. Robert Burley arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship “Rajasthan” in 1838.
Some of the population with the surname Burley who arrived in New Zealand in the 19th century included George Burley, aged 27, a laborer, arrived in Wellington, New Zealand aboard the ship “Bebington” in 1872. Richard John Burley, aged 28, a coach builder, came in Hawkes Bay aboard the ship “Countess of Kintore” in 1875.
Here is the population distribution of the last name Burley:
United States 9,510; England 4,340; Australia 1,851; Canada 1,526; South Africa 438; Scotland 282; Wales 248; New Zealand 218; France 134; Germany 134.
George Burley was a Scottish football player and manager.
Gillian Beer (born Burley), was a British literary scholar.
Jane Burley is a Scottish field hockey midfielder.
Jos Burley was a member of New Zealand’s women’s cricket team.
Joseph Leonard Burley is the founder of the Burley Football Company.
Kay Burley was an English television newscaster.
Nancy Burley (1930–2013), was an Australian figure skater.
Nick Burley is an American boxer.
Burley Coat of Arms Meaning
The four main devices (symbols) in the Burley blazon are the boar’s head, lance, lion and paly. The three main tinctures (colors) are vert, sable and or .
The deep green colour that is so often observed in heraldry is more properly known as vert. According to Wade, the use of this colour signifies “Hope and Joy”, but may also represent, rather delightfully, “Loyalty in Love” . It has other names also, the French call it sinople, perhaps after a town in Asia Minor from where the best green die materials could be found . More fanciful heralds liked to associate it with the planet venus and the precious stone emerald . More strangely, there is some evidence that the term prasin was anciently used, being the Greek for the vegetable we call the Leek!
Sable, the deep black so often found in Heraldry is believed to named from an animal of the marten family know in the middle ages as a Sabellinœ and noted for its very black fur . In engravings, when colors cannot be shown it is represented as closely spaced horizontal and vertical lines, and appropriately is thus the darkest form of hatching, as this method is known . Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy .
The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.. Along with, argent, or silver it forms the two “metals” of heraldry – one of the guidelines of heraldic design is that silver objects should not be placed upon gold fields and vice versa . The yellow colour is often associated with the Sun, and the zodiacal sign of Leo..
In the middle ages, the wild boar, a far more fearsome creature than its domesticated relative, the pig was a much more commonly seen animal than today. It was also known as a sanglier. It can appear in many of the same poses that we see for the lion, but has its own (easily imagined!) position known as enraged! We should not be surprised then that this “fierce combatant” is said to be associated with the warrior.
Given the martial nature of the origins of Heraldry, in the identification of knights and men-at-arms it can come as no surprise that mediaeval weaponry of all types are frequently to be found in a coat of arms . The spear or lance is a typical example, often borne (for obvious reasons) in allusion to the crucifixtion. Sometimes only the head is shown, and on other occasions the tilting or tournament spear is specified, familiar to us from many a jousting scene in the movies.
The art of heraldry would be significantly poorer if we were without the lion in all its forms. Most general works on Heraldry devote at least one chapter solely to this magnificent creature and its multifarious depictions . Some of the earliest known examples of heraldry, dating right back to the knighting of Geoffrey of Anjou in 1127, where he is shown with six such beasts upon his shield .The great authority on heraldic symbology, Wade, points out the high place that the lion holds in heraldry, “as the emblem of deathless courage” , a sentiment echoed equally today.