Langford Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History

Langford Family Coat of Arms

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Langford Coat of Arms Meaning

Langford Name Origin & History

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Langford Coat of Arms Meaning

The four main devices (symbols) in the Langford blazon are the wild goose, eagle, paly and lion passant. The three main tinctures (colors) are azure, argent and gules .

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 1A 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” 2The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36.

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) 3Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In a sketch or drawing it is represented by plain, unmarked paper 4A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11.

Red in heraldry is given the name Gules, sometimes said to be the “martyr’s colour”5The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36. The colour is also associated with Mars, the red planet, and the zodiacal sign Aries 6Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. Later heralds of a more poetical nature would sometimes refer to the colour as ruby, after the precious stone.7A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77.

Birds of great variety occur throughout heraldry, at least in name 8A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P233. In truth, despite the proliferation of species, the actual depictions can sometimes be hard to distinguish! The crane, heron and stork are commonly to be found on a coat of arms but all tend to share the same stylised appearance 9A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P164. The wild goose is amongst the mjaor bird species to appear in heraldry.

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 10A 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 11A 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 12The 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!

Play is what is known as a treatment, a regular patterning, usually over the whole background of the shield. The word comes from the pale, the major vertical stripe that appears on some shields, paly is obvious its little cousin, consisting of, typically, 6 or more vertical stripes, alternately coloured 13A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Paly. The stripes can be any combination of the heraldic tinctures, an early example is that of GURNEY, being simply paly of six, or and argent. Paly can be combined with other effects, such as decorative edges on each stripe, or overlaid with other treatments such as bendy, and these can be very effective and pleasing to the eye 14A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P121.

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Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Langford Name

LANGFORD

The name Langford is of Anglo-Saxon/English origin and is considered topographical as it derived its name from any of the towns found in Wiltshire, Bedfordshire, Somerset, Devonshire, Nottinghamshire, Essex, or Norfolk which are named Langford or Longford. Langford is a compound of two medieval English words, langa which translates to “length” or “long” and ford which translates to “shallow water”.

Surnames in Britain prior to the Norman conquest were largely unheard of. In the small settlements and villages which existed during earlier times, residents found little need for surnames as everyone in these communities new each other and a given name would usually suffice. However, with the passage of time, population growth and expansions of communities as villages gave way to towns and cities, it became necessary to add a qualifier to a people’s names to distinguish them, one from another. Therefore one person may have been identified by their given name plus their occupation while another may have been identified by their given name and one of their parent’s names. The introduction of surnames by the Norman aristocracy after the invasion seemed to be the next logical step in this evolution. There was a boundless supply from which surnames could be formed, in addition to the use of patriarchal/matriarchal names or reference to the individuals occupational, there were things such as defining physical traits, to a familiar geographical location or a topographical landmark found near the individuals home or birthplace, the name of the village in which the person lived, and so much more. Soon, surnames would come not just to represent an individual but whole families.

There often exists variations in spelling of many surname’s, as with many names which date back to the early centuries. The variation in spelling of both given and surnames during this time period can be attributed to a lack of continuity regarding guidelines for spelling which was compounded by the diversity of languages in use in European countries at this time. The variations in the spelling of the surname Langford include but not limited to; Langford, Langforde, Langfort, Longford, Longfort, and Longforde among others.

The earliest record of any variation of this surname is that of Osm’ de Langeford which appears in the Wiltshire tax rolls from 1130. These rolls, were a series of census and tax records kept by the English Treasury by order of King Henry I, with the oldest dating back to the 12th century. They hold the distinction of being the oldest consecutive set of records detailing English governance in the United Kingdom. These records span a period of over 700 years and have proven invaluable to researches over the years. Additionally, the marriage of William Langford and Elizabeth Davis appear in church records found in London dated 1582. The records also show Batheia Lankford was christened in London in1692.

The first recorded immigrant to America bearing the surname or any variation of the spelling was Maurice Langford who arrived in 1635 and settled in Virginia. Walter Langford landed and settled in Virginia in 1643 and Edward Langford arrived and settled in Maryland in 1644.

There were also many immigrants to the British Common Wealth countries of Canada and Australia bearing the surname Langford. William Landford landed in 1749 and settled in Canada. Brothers, John and Samuel Langford landed in 1848 and settled in Adelaide, Australia. Phoebe Langford landed in 1851 and settled in Adelaide, Australia. John Alfred and Harriet Langford landed and settled in Wellington, New Zealand in 1840 and Richard and Ann Langford and their daughter Elizabeth landed and settled in Nelson, New Zealand in 1842.

Worldwide, the highest concentration of people with the surname Langfords are found in Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, the United States, and Ireland . By state, the largest percentile of those with the surname Langford live in Texas and Louisiana.

There are many persons of note who bear the surname Langford. Sir William Langford was born in Devon in 1366. He served as a member of Parliament in the House of Lords from 1399 until 1406. The Langford’s family seat and primary estate was located in Devon, although, they maintained three other manors as well. In the 14th century Langford’s grandfather married into the de la Beche family, which added eight more estates to their holdings. Langford was knighted sometime before 1387 after having done military service overseas under the Earl of Devon of the Earl of Salisbury.

Langford Family Gift Ideas

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

1) (Alington; confirmed by Segar, Garter). Gu. a wild goose close ar. a crescent for diff.
2) (Selford, co. Bedford; granted March, 1607). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a bend of the first three eagles displ. of the second. Crest—In a row of partridge feathers of divers colours three chibbals or and ar.
3) (cos. Wilts and Berks). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a chief az. a lion pass. or.
4) (Langford Hill, co. Cornwall; seven descents in Visit. Cornwall, 1620; the heiress m. Wollacombe). (Hallatrow, co. Somerset, 1620; descended from the Langfords of co. Wilts). (Trungle and Penzance, co. Cornwall). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a chief az. a lion pass. guard. or.
5) (co. Worcester). Paly of six or and gu. (sometimes az.) a bend ar.
6) (arms in the Manor House of Sarsden, co. Oxford; Edward Langford, with Thomas Stonor, and Richard Habcourt, granted the Manor of Tackley, co. Oxford, to John Newers, and Clementia, his wife, 1 Edward IV., 1461. Visit. Oxon, 1566). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a chief az. a lion pass. or.
7) (Sir John Langford, temp. Edward II.; his sister m. Edward Pierpoint, Esq., of Holm Pierpoint, ancestor of the extinct Dukes of Kingston. Visit. Notts, 1614). Quarterly, ar. and gu.
8) (Langford Hill, Poundstock, Liskerd, and Tromade, all in co. Cornwall; descended from Langford, of Langford, co. Devon. Visit. Cornwall, 1620). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a chief az. a lion pass. guard. or, a mullet for diff.
9) (cos. Derby, Nottingham, and Salop). Paly of six or and gu. over all a bend ar. Crest—A tiger pass, coward gu. maned and tufted or.
10) (Bratton, co. Devon). Paly of six ar. and gu. on a chief of the first a lion pass. sa.
11) (co. Leicester). Paly of six ar. and gu. a bend, of the first.
12) (London and co. Middlesex). Gu. a shoveller, wings close ar. a crescent for diff. Crest—A demi shoveller, wings displ. ar. charged with a crescent for diff.
13) (London). Per pale ar. and gu. three mullets counterchanged.
14) (co. Northumberland). Paly of six or and gu. a bordure ar.
15) (Muckmaire, co. Antrim; impalement Fun. Ent. Ulster’s Office, 1630, Sir Hogh Clotworthy, Knt., whose wife was Mary, dau. of Roger Langford, from whom descend maternally Viscount Massereene and Ferrard, and Lord Langford). Paly of six sa. and or, on a chief vert a lion pass. of the field.
16) (Kilmackedret, co. Londonderry, bart., extinct; Sir Hercules Langford was created a bart. 1667, d. 18 June, 1683, and was s. by his son, Sir Arthur Langford, who d. s. p., leaving his sister, Mary Langford, his heiress; she m. Sir John Rowley, ancester of Lord Langford; Fun. Ent. Ulster’s Office). Paly of six sa. and or, on a chief vert a lion pass. guard. of the second. Crest—A demi lion ramp. holding in the dexter paw a truncheon all or.
17) Quarterly, gu. and ar. (another, gu. fretty engr. erm.).
18) Langford-Nibbs. (Island of Antigua; granted 1759). Az. a chev. engr. erm. on a chief ar. two stags’ heads cabossed gu. Crest—A stags' head cabossed gu. stricken in the scalp with an arrow or, feathered ar.

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References   [ + ]

1. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Azure
2. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
3. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
4. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11
5. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
6. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
7. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77
8. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P233
9. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P164
10. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Eagle
11. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P235-238
12. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P72-74
13. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Paly
14. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P121