Dunford Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History

Dunford Family Coat of Arms

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Dunford Coat of Arms Meaning

Dunford Name Origin & History

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Dunford Coat of Arms Meaning

The four main devices (symbols) in the Dunford blazon are the ram’s head, hand, lion and crescent. The three main tinctures (colors) are sable, gules and argent .

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 1A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable. 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 2Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26. Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy 3The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35.

Gules, the heraldic colour red is very popular, sometimes said to represent “Military Fortitude and Magnanimity”4The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36. It is usually abbreviated as gu and in the days before colour printing was shown in a system known as hatching by vertical lines 5Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P52. Although it may look like a French word it is normally pronounced with a hard “g” and may be derived either from the Latin gula (throat) or Arabic gule (rose).6A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154

Argent is the heraldic metal Silver and is usually shown as very pure white. It is also known more poetically as pearl, moon (or luna) 7Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In a sketch or drawing it is represented by plain, unmarked paper 8A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11.

Both the Ram and the ram’s head appear in heraldry, depicted in a lifelike aspect. 9A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:ram Wade assigns it the meaning of “leader” on account of its role within the flock. 10The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P68 Wade quotes Nichols in suggesting that it most resembles the primrose, which “brings good luck to the finder”. 11The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P135

The hand, unless we are told otherwise is a dexter (right) hand shown palm outwards and fingers upwards.12A Glossary of Terms used in Heraldry, J.B. Parker, 1894 P305. It demonstrates faith, sincerity and justice, and in the form of two right hands clasped can mean union or alliance13The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W Cecil Wade 1898 P92. There is a special form called the “Hand of Ulster” which is a sinister hand gules on an argent background (a left hand, red upon white). Originally the Badge of Ulster, the Province of Northern Ireland, it has come to be used as an addition to existing arms, in an escutcheon (small shield) or canton (small square) to indicate that the holder is also a Baronet.14Heraldry Historical and Popular, Charles Boutell, 1864 P56

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 15A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P172 16Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 63 17Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P140. 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 18A Treatise on Heraldry, J. Woodward, W & A.K Johnston, Edinburgh & London, 1896, P45 .The great authority on heraldic symbology, Wade, points out the high place that the lion holds in heraldry, “as the emblem of deathless courage” 19The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P60, a sentiment echoed equally today.

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Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Dunford Name

Dunford Origin:

England

Origin of Dunford:

The origin of this surname derives originally from an Anglo-Saxon location from the Dunford overpass, a village near Penistone, in the West driving of Yorkshire, or from the Dunford House in Methley, also in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The area near Penistone is near to the river Don (an old British name which possibly meaning “river”), and combined with the Olde English pre 7th Century word “Ford,” which means bridge. Therefore, the entire combined meanings of names are “a bridge on the river Don”. The area in Methley derives from the Middle English (1200 – 1500) word “Dunn”, from the Olde English word “Dunn”, which means bright-coloured (frequently used as a love name for a man with black hair or a swarthy coloring), and the Olde English word “Ford”, which has the same meaning as earlier. Thus, the whole meanings of the word are “Dunn’s Bridge.” Sometimes it is hard to be exact about a surname acquired from a famous geographical idiom like “(at) the bridge on the River Don,” or from a developed place name, as in this condition called Dunford. Andrew Dunford married Elizabeth Scott in April 1617, at Thornhill, Yorkshire. A royal monogram given to the family is a red shield with a gold crescent, and a silver curve.

Variations:

More common variations of this surname are: Dunnford, Dunfford, Duneford, Dunn-Ford, Dunniford, Denford, Danford, Dinford, Dunfort, Donford.

England:

The surname Dunford first originated in Yorkshire where they held a family seat from early times.

The very first recording spelling of the family was shown to be that of Thomas Dunfurth, which was dated March 1581, named at Thornhill by Dewsbury, Yorkshire. It was during the time of Queen Elizabeth I, who was known to be the “Good Queen Bess,” 1558 – 1603. The origin of surnames during this period 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.

United States of America:

Individuals with the surname Dunford settled in the United States in three different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, and 19th. Some of the people with the name Dunford who settled in the United States in the 17th century included Thomas Dunford at the age of 33; an English nobleman arrived in Jamestown, Va. aboard the ship “Bona Nova” in 1619.

Some of the people with the name Dunford who settled in the United States in the 18th century included Anne Dunford and Philip Dunford; both arrived in Virginia in the same year in 1711. Thomas Taylor Dunford married Elizabeth Keeling in Cumberland division, Va. in 1712. John Dunford brought to land on the eastern seaboard in 1718.

Some of the people with the name Dunford who came to the United States in the 19th century included James Dunford brought the family name to New York City in 1820.

Canada:

Individuals with the surname Dunford settled in Canada in two different centuries respectively in the 18th and 19th. Some of the people with the name Dunford who settled in the Canada in the 18th century included John Dunford arrived in Battle Harbour in 1795.

Some of the individuals with the name Dunford who settled in Canada in the 19th century included Philip Dunford married in St. John’s Newfoundland in 1813. John Dunford settled in Nova Scotia in 1841.

New Zealand:

Some of the people with the name Dunford who settled in New Zealand in the 19th century included Robert Dunford arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “Mermaid” in 1859. Worthy Dunford, who was a worker at the age of 23, arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “Assaye” in 1874.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Dunford: United States 4,583; England 3,049; Ghana 559; Australia 486; Kenya 314; Canada 1,279; South Africa 621; Wales 237; Ireland 175; New Zealand 178.

Notable People:

Joseph Francis Dunford, Jr. was born in December 1955. He is a United States Marine Corps General. Now, he is the 19th Chairman of the Joint Chieffs of Staf. He was also the 36th Commandant of the Marine Corps.

Jason Edward Dunford was born in November 1986 in Nairobi. He is a Kenyan swimmer.

Jake Dunford was born in June 1994. He is a professional cricket player who plays for Jersey.

Matt Dunford (born March 1968) is a British rugby player.

Dunford Family Gift Ideas

Browse Dunford family gift ideas and products below. If there are multiple coats of arms for this surname, you will see them at the top of this page and can click on the various coat of arms designs to apply them to the gift ideas below.

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

Notes: None. Blazon: Sable three rams' heads cabossed argent armed or. Crest—A lion's head erased argent in the mouth a dexter hand couped at the wrist proper.
Notes: None. Blazon: Gules a crescent or, and bend argent.

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References   [ + ]

1. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable
2. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26
3. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35
4. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
5. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P52
6. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154
7. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
8. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11
9. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:ram
10. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P68
11. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P135
12. A Glossary of Terms used in Heraldry, J.B. Parker, 1894 P305
13. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W Cecil Wade 1898 P92
14. Heraldry Historical and Popular, Charles Boutell, 1864 P56
15. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P172
16. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 63
17. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P140
18. A Treatise on Heraldry, J. Woodward, W & A.K Johnston, Edinburgh & London, 1896, P45
19. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P60