Langstaff Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History

Langstaff Family Coat of Arms

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Langstaff Coat of Arms Meaning

Langstaff Name Origin & History

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Langstaff Coat of Arms Meaning

The four main devices (symbols) in the Langstaff blazon are the cock, bend, pheon and estoile. The three main tinctures (colors) are gules, or and gules .

Red in heraldry is given the name Gules, sometimes said to be the “martyr’s colour”1The 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 2Understanding 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.3A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77.

The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.4Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27. 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 5A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P85. The yellow colour is often associated with the Sun, and the zodiacal sign of Leo.6Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53.

Red in heraldry is given the name Gules, sometimes said to be the “martyr’s colour”7The 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 8Understanding 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.9A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77.

The cock, and other members of its avian family are often found in coats of arms, although telling them apart simply from their images can sometimes be a challenge! Many times the precise choice of species arises as a play on words on the family name, sometimes now lost in history. 10A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Cock The cock itself, Wade points out is a “bird of great courage” and might be used as a symbol of “watchfullness”, being the herald of the dawn. 11The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P80

The bend is a distinctive part of the shield, frequently occuring and clearly visible from a distance – it is a broad band running from top left to bottom right 12Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 39-40. Indeed, so important is the bend that it was the subject of one of the earliest cases before the English Court of Chivalry; the famous case of 1390, Scrope vs Grosvenor had to decide which family were the rightful owners of Azure, a bend or (A blue shield, with yellow bend). 13A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P22. The bend is held in high honour and may signify “defence or protection” and often borne by those of high military rank 14The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P49.

Given the martial nature of the origins of Heraldry, in the identification of knights and men-at-arms it can come as no surprise that mediaeval weaponry of all types are frequently to be found in a coat of arms 15Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 89. The pheon is a specific type of arrow head with barbs and darts and hence quite distinctive in appearance. 16A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Pheon Like the other symbols related to arrows, Wade suggests the symbolism is that of “readiness for military service”. 17The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P111

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Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Langstaff Name

Langstaff Origin:

England

Origins of Langstaff:

This unique surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is a name for a “tipstaff” (coprofessionalurt official charged with keeping order), or a “Beadle” (a minor parish official who keeps order), who usually carried a long staff as an identification of office. “Long” acquires from the Olde English pre 7th Century “lang,” and “staff” comes from “staef” which means staff, and also lightness, leanness (also an Olde English component). It would also have started as a nickname for an individually tall, thin man, following a long staff, or for a sergeant or some other officer of the law. The surname was first noted in the 13th Century, and today it is popular in North East England. The Early documentation contains as Hugo Longstaf, who noted in the Record of the Freemen of the City of Leicester in 1218, and William Longstaff, who listed in the History of Norfolk, dated 1347. In the new era, the name has three spelling varieties like Longstaff, Longstaffe, and Langstaff. Documentation from English Parish Records contains as the wedding of Agnes Langstaff and William Jeffrayson at Romaldkirke, York, in May 1580. The wedding of Edmund Langstaffe and Agnes Stevenson in November 1580, at Romaldkirk and the wedding of Ann Longstaff and James Walker in Bradford, York, in April 1625.

Variations:

More common variations are: Langstaffe, Langstaf, Longstaff, Lingstaff, Langstafe, Langsteff, Langstoff, Longstaffe, Longstaf, Longstof

England:

The surname Langstaff first appeared in Norfolk where they held a family seat from very old times. Some say well before the Norman Invasion and the coming of Duke William at Hastings in 1066 AD.

The very first recording spelling of the family was shown to be that of Richard Langstaf, dated about 1210, in the “Pipe Rolls of Westmoreland.” It was during the time of King John who was known to be the “Lackland,” dated 1199- 1216. 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 Langstaff had moved to Ireland during the 17th century.

United States of America:

Some of the individuals with the name Langstaff who arrived in the United States in the 17th century included Henry Langstaff settled in New Hampshire in the year 1630. Henry Langstaff, who arrived in New England in the year 1631.

Here is the population distribution of the last name Langstaff: United States 925; Canada 480; England 468; Australia 74; Scotland 59; New Zealand 5; Wales 3; Belgium 2; Isle of Man 2; Spain 1.

Notable People:

James Henry Langstaff was born in June in the year 1956. He is a British Anglican priest. Since December 2010, he has been Priest of Rochester. From 2004 to 2010, he was Priest of Lynn, a suffragan priest in the Diocese of Norwich.

James Langstaff Bowman, PC (October 1879–September 1951) was the first Speaker of the Canadian House of Commons from Manitoba. He had been a teacher and advocate in Dauphin, Manitoba. In the year 1917, he became the town’s administrator. He ran unsuccessfully in the 1925 and 1926 general elections for the Conservative Party. He finally won a seat in the year 1930 election that brought R.B. Bennett to power.

James Miles Langstaff (June 1825–1889) was the reeve of Richmond Hill, Ontario in 1880 and a hamlet councilor there in 1878. He was born in Richmond Hill, at the Langstaff apartment around today’s Highway 7 and Yonge Street, an area then known as Langstaff Corners. He was the son of Jon Langstaff and Lucy Miles and grandson of Abner Mills.

John Langstaff (December 1920 – December 2005), a show baritone, and early music missionary was the founder of the Northeast United States tradition of the Christmas Revels, as well as an important singer and professor. He attended the Curtis Institute of Music as well as the Juilliard.

Stuart Langstaff was a Green Party candidate in the year 2004 Canadian federal election.

Langstaff Family Gift Ideas

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

(granted to Joseph Langstaff, Esq., of Newcastle). Ar. on a bend az. betw. two pheons sa. a leopard's face betw. two escallops or, a chief engr. gu. thereon an estoile betw. two fleurs-de-lis gold. Crest—On a serpent nowed or, in front of two palm branches in saltire vert, a stork rising ppr.

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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, P53
3. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77
4. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27
5. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P85
6. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
7. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P36
8. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
9. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P77
10. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Cock
11. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P80
12. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 39-40
13. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P22
14. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P49
15. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 89
16. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Pheon
17. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P111