Le Hardy

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Le Hardy family page

This Jersey family produced a succession of senior Royal Navy officers


Hardy Monument

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Origin of Surname

Hardy signifies bold, which means that the founder of the family was as brave a man as some of his descendants who followed military careers (see below).

Early records

The name appears in the Extente of 1331 and Thomas Le Hardie is listed in the Jersey Chantry Certificate of 1550.

Clement Le Hardy was a Jurat in 1381.

The hame 'Hardy' is known in France. It is not clear from what Payne wrote (below) or other records whether the family came to Jersey from Normandy or via England.

Payne's Armorial of Jersey

Historical mention of this family occurs very shortly after the disjunction of Normandy from the English crown. It was then represented by two brothers, who appear to have suffered largely for their allegiance to England, by the loss of their possessions in the Duchy. But this, their descendants soon repaired, by the acquisition of lands and social importance in Jersey, where most of the highest judicial offices have, at various periods, been filled by members of the house of Le Hardy.

One of these, Clement Le Hardy, was constituted Lieutenant-Governor and Bailly of the island by Henry VII, as a reward for most important and seasonable services he had rendered that monarch when Earl of Richmond, after his first and unsuccessful attempt to possess himself of the crown of England. Henry', being separated from the rest of his fleet by a storm, landed privately in Jersey, with the intention of staying there until permitted by the French King to reside in his dominions.

He was here sheltered at the house of Clement Le Hardy, who protected him, and subsequently conveyed him safely to Normandy at the hazard of his own life, and not withstanding a proclamation issued by Richard III, for apprehending the Earl, had been promulgated in the island.

The house in which the Earl of Richmond received such opportune shelter was situated at St Martin. It was sold by Sir Thomas Hardy, and demolished by its new possessor, in the beginning of the present century. It was a fair specimen of a Jersey house of the better kind, in the olden time. To frustrate the attacks of the Norman freebooters, who occasionally, in wartime, made a razzia upon the property of the islanders, all its windows were secured by iron gratings. The doors, which were of immense thickness, were studded with huge nails, and the outer ones were double.

Many of the family’s later members highly distinguished themselves in the British Army and Navy (see below)

The English branch of the family is represented by Thomas Duffus Hardy, Her Majesty's Deputy-Keeper of the Public Records; and that of Jersey by Lieut-Colonel Charles Francis Le Hardy.


  • As borne by Lieut-Colonel Le Hardy  : Sable, on a chevron between three escallops, or, as many griffins' heads of the Held.
  • Quartering : Azure, a chevron, or, between three cinquefoils, argent, for De Beauvoir
  • Gules, three escallops, or, a crescent for difference, for Dumaresq
  • Gules, three escallops, or, a fleur-de-lis, for difference, for Dumaresq.
  • Impaling : Argent, three leaves, vert, for Irving.
  • Crest : A dexter arm, embowed, in armour, gauntlet, ppr., garnished, or, holding a griffin's head, as in the arms.
  • Mottoes: Sic Douce (Above the Crest). Le hardy ne querre pas querelle.


  • Le Hardy, 1309
  • Le Hardye 1607
  • Le Hardi, 1331
  • Hardy 1377
  • Hardi 1299
  • dictus Hardi, 1302

Family records


Family trees


Church records


Biographies and family histories

Four of Clement Le Hardy's descendants rose to high rank in the Royal Navy in the 18th century. Two of them were first cousins and the two others were the sons of one of the cousins. Only one of the three was actually born in Jersey, the other three being born in Guernsey and Southampton. All became known as Hardy when in the Navy, probably because their family name sounded too French for a navy of a country frequently at war with France.

The novelist Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), archivist Sir Thomas Duffus Hardy (1804-1878) and Nelson's vice-Admiral, Sir Thomas Masterman Hardy (1769-1839) were all of Jersey descent. Jean Le Hardy, younger son of Clement Le Hardy, Bailiff of Jersey under Henry VII, settled in Dorset and the Admiral and novelist were descended from him. The archivist was the great-great-grandson of Jean Le Hardy, Attorney-General under George II. See family tree above.


Family wills

Family homes

Family album

Family gravestones

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