Gratton Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History

Gratton Family Coat of Arms

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Gratton Coat of Arms Meaning

Gratton Name Origin & History

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Gratton Coat of Arms Meaning

The three main devices (symbols) in the Gratton blazon are the heart, eagle’s leg and pale. The three main tinctures (colors) are gules, or and azure .

Gules, the heraldic colour red is very popular, sometimes said to represent “Military Fortitude and Magnanimity”1The 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 2Understanding 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).3A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154

Or is the heraldic metal Gold, often shown as a bold, bright yellow colour. It is said to show “Generosity and elevation of the mind” 4The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35. Later heralds, of a more poetic nature liked to refer to it as Topaz, after the gemstone, and, for obvious reasons associated it with the Sun 5Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In drawings without colour it is usually represented by many small dots, or by the letter ‘O’ 6A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P76-77.

The bright, strong blue color in Heraldry is known in English as azure, and similarly in other European languages – azul in Spanish, azurro in Italian and azur in French. The word has its roots in the Arabic word lazura, also the source of the name of the precious stone lapis lazuli 7A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure. Despite this, those heralds who liked to associate colours with jewels chose instead to describe blue as Sapphire. According to Wade, the use of this colour symbolises “Loyalty and Truth” 8The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36.

The heart is represented by the conventional symbol that we see today on playing cards. In later arms it can also appear emflamed and crowned. 9A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Heart Guillim, the 17th century heraldic author, believes that it shows the holder to be a “man of sincerity…who speaks truth from his heart”. 10A Display of Heraldry, J. Guillim, Blome, London, 1679, P184

Where the lion is undisputed king of the animals, the eagle undoubtedly plays the same role in the realm of the birds, its use in this form dating back to at least the Roman period 11A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Eagle. They tend to be illustrated in quite some detail, especially in continental European arms, and have almost as wide variety of postures and accessories as the lion, well illustrated in the reference 12A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P235-238 as well as being just the eagle’s head or eagle’s leg. The symbology of the eagle is deep and complex, Wade devotes several pages to the subject 13The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P72-74, but suffice it say that it has long been associated with Empire and those held in high honour – any armiger would be pleased to have any form of Eagle upon their arms!

The Pale is one of the major, so called ordinaries, significant objects that extend across the entire field of the shield. The pale being a broad vertical band up the centre of the shield 14A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Pale. In origin, the word probably has its roots in the same place as palisade, a defensive wall made of closely space upright timbers. Indeed, it is possible that the original “pales” arose where a wooden shield was constructed of vertical planks painted in different hues 15A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, Chapter 1. This is perhaps why Wade, a writer on Heraldic Symbology suggested that denotes “military strength and fortitude” 16The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P47.

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Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Gratton Name

Gratton Origin:

England, Ireland, France

Origins of Gratton:

This interesting name is of old English origin and is locational from different places so called, in Devon and Derbyshire. However, these places do not all stem from the same source, for example, Gratton in High Bray, Devon, listed in the Domesday Book of 1086 as “Gretedone”, and acquired from the Old English pre 7th Century “greate” which means great, with “dun” which means hill, while Gratton in Meavy, Devon, noted in the 1242 Fees shows as “Gropeton”, and acquired from the Old English “grop”, which means a canal, with “tun”, a settlement, hamlet. The place in Derbyshire, listed in the Domesday Book as “Gratune,” acquires from “greate,” and “tun.” So, the whole meanings of the name “great settlement,” and there are also many small places in Devon which have as their source the dialectal word “Gratton” which means stubble field. In Atherington, Devon in May 1630, one Margaret Gratton, the infant daughter of John and Prudence Gratton named.

Variations:

More common variations are: Grattoni, Grattone, Graytton, Graton, Grtton, Grattn, Garattoni, Gretton, Grattan, Gritton.

England:

The surname Gratton first appeared in Tipperary (Irish: Thiobraid Arann), built in the 13th century in South-central Ireland, in the county of Munster, where they held a family seat from very early times.

The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that of William de Gratton, dated about 1327, in the “Subsidy Rolls of Derbyshire.” It was during the time of King Edward III who was known to be the “The Father of the Navy,” dated 1327 – 1377. 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.

Ireland:

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

United States of America:

Individuals with the surname Gratton landed in the United States in the 19th century. Some of the people with the name Gratton who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Mary Gratton settled in Boston Massachusetts in the year 1848. John Gratton, who settled in New York in 1820 and Edward Gratton landed in Philadelphia in 1862.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Gratton: Canada 4,757; United States 2,559; England 2,124; Italy 571; France 478; Australia 388; Germany 168; Argentina 134; Wales;124; Brazil 95.

Motto:

The motto was originally a war cry or catchword. Mottoes first started to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus, the oldest coats of arms do not contain a motto. Mottoes sometimes form part of the grant of arms. Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional element of the royal symbol and can be added to or modified at will like many families have chosen not to display a motto.

Motto: Pro patria vivere et mori

Motto Translation: For my country, I die and live

Notable People:

Christopher A. Gratton (born July 1975) is an old Canadian professional ice hockey player who last played with the Columbus Blue Jackets of the National Hockey League. He is the cousin of Josh Gratton, who had also quickly played in the NHL as a member of the Philadelphia Flyers and the Phoenix Coyotes.

Dean Anthony Gratton (born 1968) is a writer and analyst specializing in wireless communications. He is married to film director and writer of Sarah-Jayne Gratton.

Sarah-Jayne Gratton, nee Camden (born 1966 in Cambridge, England) is a producer, writer, and an old theater actress. She is married to writer and columnist Dean Anthony Gratton.

Benoit Jacques Joseph Gratton (born December 1976 in Montreal, Quebec) is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward currently playing for Jonquière Marquis of the Ligue Nord-Americaine de Hockey (LNAH).

Lynda Gratton (born February 1955) a British organizational scholar, specialist, and Professor of Management Practice at London Business School and the founder of the Hot Spots Movement.

Josh Gratton (born September 1982) is a Canadian professional ice hockey left winger who is currently on trial play with Ässät of the Liiga after previously playing for the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League (AHL).

Gratton Family Gift Ideas

Browse Gratton 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

Gu. a pale per saltire az. and or. Crest—On a human heart ppr. an eagle’s leg.

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References   [ + ]

1. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
2. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P52
3. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P154
4. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35
5. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
6. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P76-77
7. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure
8. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
9. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Heart
10. A Display of Heraldry, J. Guillim, Blome, London, 1679, P184
11. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Eagle
12. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P235-238
13. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P72-74
14. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Pale
15. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, Chapter 1
16. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P47