Neel

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Neel family page
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Miss Neel
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Origin of Surname

The name is derived from a personal name, Neel being the French form of Nigel.

Early records

It first appears in the Assize Roll of 1309 and Adryen, Jean, Johan and Johan, son of Guillaume appear in the Jersey Chantry Certificate of 1550

Payne's Armorial of Jersey

Amongst the chiefs who shared with William of Normandy the glorious fruits of the victory of Hastings, were more than one of the name of Nigel or Neel. Neel de St Sauveur, Viscount of Cotentin, was one of the powerful Norman barons who revolted against William the Conqueror, and who, in addition to his large possessions in continental Normandy, held a moiety of the island of Guernsey, in beneficio, with the patronage of six of the parish churches of that island.

From the earliest historic period the name is found in Jersey. The Extente of 1331 contains record of the names of Richard Neel, a landowner in the Parish of St Martin, and of Peter Neel, who was Seigneur of the fief of Neaux, now known as les Niemes or Galenes, in Grouville, in which parish he held, besides, a bouvée of land. Another Peter Neel was, at the same period, one of the jurymen who assessed the King's dues in the Parish of St Clement.

Elias Neel

Several members of the family of Neel were in the church. Sire Geoffroy and Sire John Neel were Roman Catholic priests who flourished in Jersey in the middle of the 16th century. The most eminent of these ecclesiastics, however, was Sire John Neel, a graduate of the University of Paris, and subsequently Dean of Prince Arthur's Chapel, who is entitled to the everlasting gratitude of his countrymen as the founder of the two Grammar Schools of St Magloire (Manelier) and St Anastasius, in the Parishes of St Saviour and St Peter.

This very ancient house is now represented in Jersey by Jurat Elias Neel and in a younger branch by Elias Andrews Neel.

Variants

  • Neal
  • Neale
  • Neil
  • Neel, 1299
  • Nel 1309
  • Neaux
  • Neaulx, 1363
  • Neaus, 1309
  • Nelle
  • Née, this spelling is found in some church records, but is probably an error

Family records

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