Glen Coat of Arms

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

1) Ar. three martlets sa. Crest—An arm embowed vested sa., in the hand ppr. a heart gu.
2) (Bar, co. Renfrew, Scotland). & (Stratton Audley Park, co. Oxford). Motto—Alta pete. Ar. a fesse gu. betw. three martlets sa. Crest—A martlet sa.

Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Glen Name

Glen Origin:

England, Germany

Origins of Glen:

This name is of a geographical origin either from the estates of Glen in the church of Traquair, Peeblesshire, Scotland or Glen in Leicestershire. The latter was first listed as “aet Glenn” in “The Anglo-Saxon records,” dated 849, and as Glen in the Domesday Book of 1086. The name acquires from the British “glenno,” which means a Dale. “British,” in this example, relates to the Celtic language of the old Britons. The Scottish “Glen” so named from the ancient Gaelic “gleann,” which also means as “Dale.” The surname first noted in England in the first part of the 13th Century. One, Adam de Glen shows in “the Premium Rolls of Leicestershire,” dated 1327. Colban del Glen who received a tradition left him by the queen listed in “The Exchequer Rolls of Scotland,” (1328).

Variations:

More common variations are: Glenn, Gleen, Galen, Glean, Golen, Gllen, Glene, Gleyn, Glena, Glein.

England:

The surname Glen first appeared in Peebles-shire where they held a family seat from old times. The Glen family name acquired from the old word “glean” which means a little Dale.

The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that of Gregory Glen, dated about 1230, in the “Curia Rolls of Suffolk.” It was during the time of King Henry III who was known to be the “The Frenchman,” dated 1216 – 1272.

Ireland:

Many of the people with surname Glen had moved to Ireland during the 17th century.

United States of America:

Individuals with the surname Glen settled in the United States in three different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, and 19th. Some of the individuals with the name Glen who landed in the United States in the 17th century included Sander Glen brought land in New York in 1639. Sander Leedertsz Glen landed in New York, NY in 1639.

People with the surname Glen who settled in the United States in the 18th century included William Glen arrived in Maryland in 1707-1708. Archibald Glen came to Georgia in 1738.

The following century saw many more Glen surnames come. Some of the population with the name Glen who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Margaret Glen, Jean Glen, Jeany Glen and William Glen all came to America in the same year 1805.

Canada:

People with the surname Glen settled in Canada in two different centuries respectively in the 18th and 19th. Individuals with the surname Glen who came to Canada in the 18th century included Joseph Glen, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1775.

Some of the people with the surname Glen who landed in Canada in the 19th century included James Glen, Taddy Glen and Rose Glen, all arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick in 1834 aboard the brig “Breeze” from Dublin, Ireland. Matthew Glen arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship “Protector” in 1834.

Australia:

People with the surname Glen who settled in Australia in the 19th century included John Glen arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship “Katherine Stewart Forbes” in 1839.

New-Zealand:

Some of the individuals with the surname Glen who settled in New Zealand in the 19th century included Joseph A. Glen arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “Gertrude” in 1863. Francis G. Glen arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “Queen of Nations” in 1874.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Glen: Turkey 6,359; United States 3,980; England 2,968; South Africa 1,699; Scotland 1,687; Australia 1,539; Canada 1,290; Poland 1,050; Kenya 706; Germany 605.

Notable People:

Archie Glen (1929-1998), was a Scottish international football player.

Gary Glen (born 1990), is a Scottish football player

James Allison Glen (1877-1950), was a Canadian leader.

John Glen (director) (born 1932), is English film director and editor.

Glen Coat of Arms Meaning

The main device (symbol) in the Glen blazon is the martlet. The two main tinctures (colors) are sable 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.

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) 4Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In a sketch or drawing it is represented by plain, unmarked paper 5A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11.

The martlett is by far the most common bird to appear in British Heraldry, perhaps only equalled by the eagle, however it is not a species ever to be found in an ornithologists handbook! The word itself is though to have come from the French word merlette, the female blackbird and itself a similar type of charge used in French Heraldry. 6A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Martlet. Over time the image has become quite stylised, without visible legs or distinctive feathers. Wade suggests that this representation arises from “the appearance of the bird of paradise to ancient travellers” 7The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P79. Other bird species may be named in coats of arms (cornish chough is a frequent example) but in actual execution their appearance is often indistinguishable from the martlet.

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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. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
5. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11
6. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Martlet
7. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P79