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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

Per pale ar. and or, a cockatrice sa. combed gu.

Origin, Meaning, Family History and Langland Coat of Arms and Family Crest

Langland Origin:

England, Scotland

Origins of Langland:

This Anglo-Scottish domestic surname is noted as Langland, Langlands, Longland and Longlands. It is of Anglo-Saxon pre 8th-century sources. It acquires from the words "lang" which means "long," and "land," which in this meaning is an area removed for agricultural use. The surname was given formerly either as a geographical name to a person or citizen by a large piece of agricultural land or as a locational name for a person from the barony of Langland in Peeblesshire. The surname was first listed in England towards the end of the 13th Century, and early documentation contains Ralph atte Longelonde, in the 1332 " Premium Rolls of Surrey," and Hugh de Langelonde, in the Somerset rolls of the year 1340. Johannes de Langland, the first Scottish name ancestor, held a record of the lands of Milsallytoun and Ochtirheuyd in 1364, while Charles Langlands was the vicar of Dryvisdall in 1531, and James Langlands listed in "The Register of the Privy Council of Scotland," in 1576. He required paying twenty marks as the pledge for Will Robson, though why he should have given this guarantee is not known.


More common variations are: Langlande, Langlandy, Langhland, Longland, Langlund, Lengland, Lnagland, Lingland, Langoulant


The surname Langland first appeared in Lincolnshire where the name acquired from the Old English lang or long land, collectively meaning "large land" relating to a long piece of land.

The very first recording spelling of the family was shown to be that of Thomas de Longelond, dated about 1269, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Sussex." It was during the time of King Edward 1 who was known to be the “The Hammer of the Scots," dated 1272 - 1307. 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.


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

United States of America:

Individuals with the surname Langland landed in the United States in two different centuries respectively in the 17th and 19th. Some of the people with the name Langland who arrived in the United States in the 17th century included William Langland settled in Virginia in 1650.

The following century saw more Langland surnames arrive. Some of the people with the surname Langland who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Jennit Langland settled in New York in 1822 with four children.


Some of the individuals with the surname Langland who landed in Australia in the 19th century included John Langland arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship "Cromwell" in 1849.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Langland: United States 986; Canada 53; Norway 26; Sweden 22; China 2; Afghanistan 1; India 1; Scotland 1; Saudi Arabia 1; England 1

Notable People:

Joseph Langland (February 1917-April 2007) was an American poet. He was born in Spring Grove, Minnesota. He grew up in Northeastern Iowa on the family farm. He got both a bachelor's degree (1940) and a master's degree (1941) from the University of Iowa. He gave services in the U.S. Army as an infantryman during World War II. His first collection of poems For Harold (1945) composed by his younger brother who killed in action in the Philippines.

Tuck Langland is an artist who lives in Granger, Indiana. His monument-size bronze figure is highlighted in hospitals, parishes, private collections, museums, sculpture gardens, and dozens of other places. He is probably famous for his two famous books, Practical Sculpture and From Clay to Bronze. He is the old Vice President of the National Sculpture Society. In addition to a sculptured post, Langland is the creator of the Tuck Langland Collection of slides of Gothic structure in England and France, housed at Princeton University.

William Langland is the supposed writer of one of the greatest examples of Middle English alliterative poetry.

Langland Coat of Arms Meaning

The main device (symbol) in the Langland blazon is the cockatrice. The two main tinctures (colors) are argent and or.

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) 1. In a sketch or drawing it is represented by plain, unmarked paper 2.

The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.3. Along with, argent, or silver it forms the two “metals” of heraldry – one of the guidelines of heraldic design is that silver objects should not be placed upon gold fields and vice versa 4. The yellow colour is often associated with the Sun, and the zodiacal sign of Leo.5.

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 cockatrice or basilisk being one of them. 6 Whilst both the dragon and cocaktrice are winged and scaled, the cocaktrice stands on two legs rather than four. Given the reputation of the basilisk we should not be surprised to find its meaning ascribed as representing “terror to all beholders”. 7

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  • 1 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
  • 2 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11
  • 3 Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27
  • 4 A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P85
  • 5 Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
  • 6 A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Cockatrice
  • 7 The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P86