Godfray

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Godfray family page
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This family has been long established in Jersey. With a record of a spelling variant in 1200, it qualifies as one of the very earliest surnames in the island


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Ada Rebecca Godfray with Cyril Bacon

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Origin of Surname

This family name originates with the personal name Godfrey, or Godefroi, the leader of the first Crusade.

The personal name Godfrey, is ultimately of Old German origin, as "Godafrid", a compound of "Guda, Goda", god, with "frithu, frid", peace. There was a corresponding Old English given name, "Godfrith", but it was not common, and most of the modern surnames derive from the Norman form of the German name, "Godefroi, Godefrois", introduced into England after the Conquest of 1066.

The given name is recorded in its Latinized form in the Domesday Book of 1086, as "Godefridus", and the surname development includes Alan Godefre (1252, Huntingdonshire), and Maud Godefray (1277, Nottinghamshire).

The first record of the name is that of Symon Godefrei, which was dated 1221, in the "Charters of Ely", Suffolk, during the reign of King Henry III.

Harriet Elizabeth Godfray (1784-1877) married Jean de La Lande. She left £204 7s 10d in her will and administration was granted on 8 July 1877 to Durell Godfray, a dairy farmer of Town Mills

Early records

Godfray is found in the Assize Roll of 1309.

Over 850 baptisms of Godfrays and variants are in our database, starting as early as 1546.

Payne's Armorial of Jersey

This family settled in Jersey some time previous to 1600, in the person of Drouet Godfray. His son, Humphrey Godfray, as appears by family tradition, based on documentary evidence, having sold some landed property in the county of Northumberland (whence his fether had emigrated), purchased an estate in the parish of St Martin, near St Catherine's Bay. Thence, in the middle of the last century, the representative of the elder branch of the family, Philip Godfray, removed to Anneville, on his marriage with Sarah, daughter and eventual heiress of George Messervy. Their eldest son, Philip Godfray, on the death of his mother, inherited this estate, and in 1773 married Frances, the daughter and heiress of Francis Fauvel, a member of a wealthy insular family. The eldest son of this marriage, Philip Godfray, was for several years Constable of St Martin.


Variants

  • Godefroi
  • Godfrey, 1528
  • Godfray, 1668
  • Godfroy 1461
  • Godefre 1402
  • Godeffre 1363
  • Godeffroy, 1331
  • Godefrei 1381
  • Godefrey, 1309
  • Godefreye 1540
  • Godefridi 1229
  • Godefrithis 1200

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