Darby Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History


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Leap Castle
Leap Castle

This surname is a corruption of the surname Derby, a locational meaning “of Derby”. Derby is city in England. One author claims it comes from the Old English word deer-by or doer-by, meaning a county or town that is abundant with deer. Another author notes it derives from the Old Norse words djur and byr, meaning deer and farm, respectively. Derby is refered to in the Domesday Book of 1086 AD as “Derbei”. Dyrbye is a local and personal name in Denmark.

Early notables include Robert de Derby from county Lancashire in 1332 AD listed in the Lay Subsidy, William de Dereby, located in county Derby during the reign of Henry III and Edward I, Robertus de Derby, Johannes Derby, and Nicholaus de Derby listed in 1379 AD in P.T. Yorks.  A one John Darby, beloved servant of the Hovernment of Worcester during the siege of 1646, died in 1667 and was buried in Fladbury Church. Early marriages include Sarah Darby to Thomas Walthall in St. George’s Hanover Square in 1733 and Alice Darbye to Thomas Chandler in Hampshire in 1570 AD.

In his book The Landed Gentry, Bernard Burke mentions two branches of this family: Darby of Leap Castle and Darby of Coalbrookdale. Darby of Leap traces its lineage back to Jonathan Darby of Leap, from King’s County, who was High Sheriff in 1674 and married Deborah (surname not given) and had five children: Jonathan, George, John, William, and Mary. Another notable Darby of this lineage was William Henry Darby (born in 1790) who was a Barrister-at-Law and married Laura Charlotte and had two children: Jonathan and Mary Charlotte, and also later married Elizabeth Drought in 1848 and had six children: Lieutenant William Henry, John Nelson, Elizabeth Henrietta, Wilhelmina Katharine Anne, Laura Susan Ellen, Laura Caroline, Maude Mary, Theodora Lovett, Gertrude Monica, and Anne Vaughan. Darby of Coalbrookdale resides there for many generations.  Notables of this lineage include Abraham Darby (born 1711), the song of Abraham Darby, who married Margaret Smith and had one naughted named Hannah.  He later married Abiah Sinclair, the youngest child of Samuel Maude of Sunderland, and had four children with her: Francis, Richard, Anne, and Hannah.

Early American settlers bearing this surname include Tho Darby (Viriginia 1635), Ann Darby (Virginia 1650), Captain Darby (Boston 1776), and Hugh Darby (Phildelphia, 1823).

One family motto recorded for Darby is Ut cunque placuerit Deo, which means “Howsoever it shall have pleased God”.

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

Sir Henry d'Esterre Darby
Sir Henry d’Esterre Darby

1) (co. Dorset and London). Per chev. battelly or and az. three eagles displ. counterchanged. Crest—Out of a tower ar. two wings, the dexter or, sinister az. Another Crest—An eagle’s head erased ar.
2) (Colebrookdale, co. Salop). Per chev. embattled az. and erminois three eagles displ. each charged on the breast with an escallop, all counterchanged. Crest—In front of two crosses crosslet fitchee in saltire sa. a demi eagle displ. couped erm. wings az. charged on the breast with an escallop of the last. Motto—Utc unque placuerit Deo.
3) (Walton, co. Leicester). Ar. a fesse betw. three sinister wings sa.
4) (Benington, co. Lincoln). Ar. a chev. betw. three garbs sa. banded or. Crest—An antelope’s head erased gu. maned, tufted, armed, and attired or.
5) (cos. Devon and Northants). Same Arms. Crest—An heraldic tiger attired with four horns, turned round like rains’ horns, or.
6) (co. Suffolk). Vert, a chev. betw. three garbs sa. banded or. Crest—A garb ar. banded or.
7) (Stoke Court, Bucks), Per chev. battelly az. and erminois, three eagles displ. two and one, each charged on the breast with an escallop, all counterchanged. Crest—In front of two cross crosslets fitchee in saltier sa. a demi eagle displ. couped erminois wings az. charged on the breast with an escallop of the last. Motto—Utcunque placuerit Deo.
8) (confirmed to Adm. Sir Henry D’Esterre Darby, of Leap Castle, King’s Co.). Az. on a chev. ar. betw. three garbs or, a naval coronet of the first betw. two anchors sa. pendant in the centre chief from a ribband of the second, fimbriated of the field, a representation of the gold medal conferred upon the said Admiral by command of His Majesty in commemoration of his gallant conduct at the Battle of the Nile, when in command of H.M.S. Bellerophon. Beneath the said medal the word “ Nile ’’ inscribed in gold letters upon the field. Crest—A garb or, banded with a naval crown az. In front of an anchor placed in sinister bend sa. Motto—Spero mellora.

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