Leek Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History
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Origins of Leek:
This name has two possible origins. The first origin being habitational from Leak in the North Riding of Yorkshire, Leake in Lincolnshire and Nottingham or Leek in Staffordshire. All these regions called from the Olde Norse components “loekr” which means a “stream of water.” The name was frequently given to a person living in any of the above areas, or to a resident by a pool or lake. Similar spellings of the name were de Leke (1273), de Leek (1290) and Leeke (1595). One, John son of Arthur Leake was christened in St. Peter’s parish, Cornhill, London in circa 1595. The name may also be a metonymic professional name for a producer or retailer of leeks, acquiring from the Olde English before l7th Century.
More common variations are: Leeke, Leeky, Leeck, Lewek, Leeka, Laeek, Leyek, Leeak, Leeki, Lieek.
The surname Leek first appeared in Lincolnshire, Yorkshire or Nottinghamshire which all have names of churches like Leake. For some of the first recordings of the family, we must look to Lincolnshire where the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273 record contains as John de Lek, Roger de Leke and Teobald de Lek as all residing in that division at that time. Willie’s Lyke-Wake is a Child Ballad, one of 305 classic ballads from England and Scotland, and recorded in the 1904 Houghton Mifflin edition. Lyke-Wake Dirge is a classical English song that is considered to have originated in the Yorkshire.
The very first recording spelling of the family was shown to be that of Walter de Lek, dated about 1202, in the “Assize Court Rolls of Lincolnshire.” 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. Surnames all over the country began to develop, with unique and shocking spelling varietions of the original one.
Many of the people with surname Leek had moved to Ireland during the 17th century.
United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Leek settled in the United States in two different centuries respectively in the 17th and 18th. Some of the people with the name Leek who settled in the United States in the 17th century included Edward Leek, who arrived in Barbados in 1679. Aaron Leek, at the age of 21, settled in Barbados in 1682.
The following century saw more Leek surnames arrive. Some of the people with the name Leek who settled in the United States in the 18th century included Johannis Leek, who landed in New York in 1715-1716. John Leek at the age of 17, landed in Virginia in 1773. John Leek, who arrived in Virginia in 1773.
Some of the people with the surname Leek who settled in Australia in the 19th century included Elizabeth Leek at the age of 16, who was a worker, landed in South Australia in 1851 aboard the ship “Prince Regent.” Elizabeth Leek at the age of 16, arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship “Prince Regent” in 1851. Ann Leek at the age of 50, landed in Nelson aboard the ship “Phoebe Dunbar” in 1841.
Some of the people with the surname Leek who settled in New Zealand in the 19th century included Ann Leek at the age of 50, arrived in Nelson aboard the ship “Phoebe Dunbar” in 1850. Christopher Leek, Mary Leek, George Leek and Frank Leek, all arrived in Auckland, New Zealand aboard the ship “88 British King” in 1884.
Here is the population distribution of the last name Leek: United States 3,523; England 1,957; Australia 401; Canada 259; Wales 260; Germany 134; Netherlands 598; Estonia 153; Kenya 314, Sweden 435.
Andy Leek (born 1964), is an English singer.
Gene Leek (born 1936), is an American player in baseball.
Geoff Leek (1932–2008), was an Australian rules football player.
John de Leche or de Leek was a famous priest of Dublin.
Ken Leek (1935–2007), was a Welsh football player.
Miranda Leek (born 1993), is an American head.
Peter Leek (born 1988), is an Australian Paralympic swimmer.
Ralph Leek is an American player in football.
Stephen Leek (born 1959), is an Australian writer, conductor, professor and announcer.
Blazons & Genealogy Notes
Ar. on a saltire engr. sa. nine annulets of the first. Crest—A demi lion guard. holding a fleur-de-lis.