Marley Family Crest, Coat of Arms and Name History

Marley Family Coat of Arms

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Marley Coat of Arms Meaning

Marley Name Origin & History

We have several coat of arms design(s) for the name Marley. Click on the thumbnails to view each design.
marley coat of arms

Marley Coat of Arms Meaning

The three main devices (symbols) in the Marley blazon are the bars wavy, dolphin and martlet. The three main tinctures (colors) are sable, argent and or .

Sable, the deep black so often found in Heraldry is believed to named from an animal of the marten family know in the middle ages as a Sabellinœ and noted for its very black fur 1A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable. In engravings, when colors cannot be shown it is represented as closely spaced horizontal and vertical lines, and appropriately is thus the darkest form of hatching, as this method is known 2Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26. Although it may seem a sombre tone, and does indeed sometimes denote grief, it is more commonly said to represent Constancy 3The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35.

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) 4Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53. In a sketch or drawing it is represented by plain, unmarked paper 5A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11.

The bright yellow colour frequently found in coats of arms is known to heralds as Or, or sometimes simply as Gold.6Boutell’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 7A 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.8Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53.

The bar is a thin, horizontal stripe across the centre of the shield, usually in groups of two or three (any more and there would be confusion with barry, a treatment of horizontal lines of alternating colours). It is also possible to place decorative edges along bars, typically these are smaller than those found on the major ordinaries like the fess and pale, but have the same design and share the same meanings. The decorative edge pattern Wavy, is a typical example of this. For obvious reasons it is associated with both water and the sea 9The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P40. Indeed, a roundel with alternating bars of azure and argent (blue and white) is known by the shorthand term fountain, representing water at the bottom of a well 10A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Water. Other colours have also been used and the result can be very pleasing to the eye.

In the days before television and the internet it was a rare heraldic artist that had ever seen a dolphin for real, so we should not be surprised that the heraldic representation is not instantly recognisable. Despite this, we should not forget that these artists considered the dolphin to be the king of fish, playing the same role as the lion in the animal kingdom. 11A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Dolphin For reasons not immediately clear, Wade suggests that the dolphin was regarded as an “affectionate fish, fond of music”. 12The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P83

The martlett is by far the most common bird to appear in British Heraldry, perhaps only equalled by the eagle, however it is not a species ever to be found in an ornithologists handbook! The word itself is though to have come from the French word merlette, the female blackbird and itself a similar type of charge used in French Heraldry. 13A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Martlet. Over time the image has become quite stylised, without visible legs or distinctive feathers. Wade suggests that this representation arises from “the appearance of the bird of paradise to ancient travellers” 14The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P79. Other bird species may be named in coats of arms (cornish chough is a frequent example) but in actual execution their appearance is often indistinguishable from the martlet.

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Origin, Meaning and Family History of the Marley Name

Marley Origin:
England

Origins of Marley:
This long-established surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is locational from any of the different places thus called, including Marley in Devonshire, Durham, Kent and the West Riding of Yorkshire, or Marley Farm in Brede (Sussex).  The Yorkshire place noted as “Mardelai” in the Domesday Book of 1086, acquires its first component from the Olde English pre 7th Century “mearth” which means (pine) marten, plus “leah,” wood or clearing.  This latter element is common to all the places mentioned above.  Marley in Durham and Devonshire noted as “Merleia” and “Merlegh” in 1183 and 1242 respectively, share the similar first component, i.e. the Olde English “(ge)maer,” a boundary. So, “(ge)maer-leah”.  Marley in Kent, noted as “Merille” in the 1242 Fine Court Rolls of that division, has as its first component the Olde English “myrig,” pleasant.  Locational surnames advanced when old residents of a place moved to another area, usually to seek work and best identified by the name of their birthplace.  The surname first noted in the mid-12th Century, and other early records contain as Thomas de Mardele and John de Marley (Yorkshire 1208 and 1285 respectively).  In April 1573, Agnes Marley and John Pyppen married at St. James’ Clerkenwell, London.  A Coat of Arms given to the family depicts three silver dolphins naiant embowed on a black bend, all on a gold shield.

Variations:
More common variations are: Mahrley, Mairley, Marley, Mareley, Mearley, Maroley, Mariley, Marleye, Marrleye, Marrley, Marleey.

England:
The origins of the surname Marley appeared in Cheshire where people held a family seat from early times.  Someone say better before the success of Normans and the entrance of Duke William at Hastings1066 A.D.

The very first recorded spelling of the family was shown to be that of William de Merlai, dated about circa 1145, in the “Book of Seals of Durham.”  It was during the time of King Stephen, who was known to be the “Count of Blois,” dated 1135 – 1154.  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 varieties of the original one.

Ireland:

 

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

United States of America:
Individuals with the surname Marley landed in the United States in three different centuries respectively in the 17th, 18th, and 19th.    Some of the people with the name Marley who arrived in the United States in the 17th century included Thomas Marley, who landed in Maryland in 1641.  John Marley, who came to Virginia in 1658.  Roger Marley, who settled in Virginia in 1660.  Roger Marley, who arrived in Virginia in 1660.  Francis Marley, who came to Maryland in 1663.

People with the surname Marley who landed in the United States in the 18th century included John Marley, who came to Maryland in 1730.  Manus Marley, who landed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1745.

The following century saw more Marley surnames arrive.  Some of the people with the surname Marley who arrived in the United States in the 19th century included Peter Marley, who landed in Charleston, South Carolina in 1813.  James Marley, who came to Baltimore in 1828.  James Marley, who landed in San Francisco, California in 1851.  George, James, John, Michael, Patrick, Richard, Thomas, and William Marley, who all arrived in Philadelphia between 1840 and 1860.

Canada:
People with the surname Marley settled in Canada in two different centuries respectively in the 18th and 19th.  Some of the individuals with the surname Marley who came to Canada in the 18th century included John Marley, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1750.

The following century saw much more Marley surnames arrive.  People with the surname Marley who settled in Canada in the 19th century included Ann Marley, aged 24, arrived in Saint John, New Brunswick aboard the ship “Cupid” in 1834.

Australia:
Some of the individuals with the surname Marley who landed in Australia in the 19th century included Marley arrived in Adelaide, Australia aboard the ship “Childe Harold” in 1849.  Margaret Marley, aged 21, a servant, arrived in South Australia in 1855 aboard the ship “Rodney.”

Here is the population distribution of the last name Marley:
United States 7,699; England 3,942; Brazil 3,768; Ghana 2,556; Angola 1,401; Kenya 863; Mexico 785; Australia 694; France 661; Northern Ireland 584

Notable People:
Rita Marley was a singer.
Cedella Marley was a Booker, singer and writer, and mother of Bob Marley.
Cedella Marley is a musician and clothing designer, daughter of Bob Marley.

Marley Family Gift Ideas

Browse Marley family gift ideas and products below. If there are multiple coats of arms for this surname, you will see them at the top of this page and can click on the various coat of arms designs to apply them to the gift ideas below.

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Blazons & Genealogy Notes

1) Ar. two bars wavy gu.
2) (co. Durham). Ar. a chev. betw. three martlets sa.
3) Or, on a bend sa. three dolphins naiant embowed ar.

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References   [ + ]

1. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Sable
2. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 26
3. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P35
4. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
5. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1847, P11
6. Boutell’s Heraldry, J.P. Brooke-Little, Warne, (revised Edition) London 1970, P 27
7. A Complete Guide to Heraldry, A.C. Fox-Davies, Bonanza (re-print of 1909 Edition), New York, 1978, P85
8. Understanding Signs & Symbols – Heraldry, S. Oliver & G. Croton, Quantum, London, 2013, P53
9. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P40
10. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Water
11. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Dolphin
12. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P83
13. A Glossary of Terms used in British Heraldry, J.H. Parker, Oxford, 1894, Entry:Martlet
14. The Symbolisms of Heraldry, W. Cecil Wade, George Redway, London, 1898 P79