Hinchliff Coat of Arms
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Origin, Meaning, Family History and Hinchliff Coat of Arms and Family Crest
Origins of Hinchliff:
The origins of the Hinchliff name lie with England’s old Anglo-Saxon culture. It acquires from when the family resided at Hinchcliff, now named Hinchliffe Mill, a spot in the township of Austonley, close to Holmtorth in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The name acquired from the Old English phrase “henge-clif” which means “steep cliff.”
More common variations are: Hinchliffe, Hincheliff, Hinchlliff, Hinchlif, Hincheliffe, Hiinchliffe, Hinchiliffe, Hinchlife, Hinchlffe.
The surname Hinchliff first appeared in the West Riding of Yorkshire where one of the first records of the name was John de Hengeclif who noted in the Court Rolls of the Manor or Wakefield in 1324. Agnes de Hingeclif recorded in the same reference but a few years later in 1327. The Record of Freeman in York list William Hynsecliff in 1485 and Henry Hensceclyf in 1552. John Hyncheclyffe noted in Sheffield in 1441, and so John Hinchliffe in 1633. The Yorkshire Poll Tax Rolls of 1379 record as Johannes de Hyncheclyff; Willelmus de Hynchecliff; and Ricardus de Hynchecliff.
United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Hinchliff landed in the United States in the 19th century. Some of the people with the name Hinchliff who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Arthur Hinchliff, who landed in Allegany (Allegheny) Division, Pennsylvania in the year 1879.
Hinchliff Coat of Arms Meaning
The two main devices (symbols) in the Hinchliff blazon are the wyvern and fleur-de-lis. The two main tinctures (colors) are vert 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” 1The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36. 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 2A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Vert. More fanciful heralds liked to associate it with the planet venus and the precious stone emerald 3Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27. More strangely, there is some evidence that the term prasin was anciently used, being the Greek for the vegetable we call the Leek!
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.
Nowadays we might conflate many mythical creatures under the heading of dragon but to the heraldic artists there was a whole menagerie of quite distinct beasts, the wyvern being one of them. 7A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Cockatrice Whilst both the dragon and wyvern are winged and scaled, the wyvern stands on two legs rather than four. Wade suggests, somewhat plausibly that both creatures may have arisen through garbled descriptions of the crocodile. 8The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P26
The fleur-de-lys (“flower of the lily”) has a long and noble history and was a symbol associated with the royalty of France even before heraldry became widespread. 9Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 3. The Lily flower is said to represent “Purity, or whiteness of soul”10The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P134 and sometimes associated with the Virgin Mary. The fleur-de-lys is also used as a small “badge”, known as a mark of cadency to show that the holder is the sixth son of the present holder of the arms 11A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P489