Should the LNAB be Montfort instead of Mountfort? [closed]

+7 votes
Going by the resources I was consulting, it appears Montfort is the correct LNAB for this profile. Just wanted to get feedback to see if others that work closely with this time period agree. Thanks!
WikiTree profile: Katharine Ferror
closed with the note: Resolved
in The Tree House by Jayme Arrington G2G6 Pilot (157k points)
closed by Jayme Arrington

Last name: Mountfort

This famous surname is of French locational origin from Montford-sur-Risle in Normandy, so called from the Olde French "mont", a hill, plus "fort", strong and impregnable. The surname from this source is first recorded in the Domesday Book (see below), the namebearer being a follower of William the Conqueror who was granted lands in England. One, Ralph de Munford appears in the 1159 "Pipe Rolls of Kent" and a Simon de Mumford in the 1242 "Fine Court Rolls of Kent". It is also possible that the name is locational from various villages called Montford, but these all have a French origin as above. In the "modern" idiom, the name is spelt Montford, Montfort, Mountford, Mountfort, Mumford and Mun(d)ford. On 1597, a John Mountford was recorded in the Oxford University Register, whilst William Momeforde is recorded in the register of St Margarets, Westminster, being christened there on March 22nd 1546. The ancient Coat of Arms has the balzon of a blue lion saliant on a gold field, the Crest being a demi cat rampant. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugo de (of) Montford, which was dated 1086, in the Domesday Book, during the reign of King William 1, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.

© Copyright: Name Origin Research 1980 - 2016

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Frank, thanks for the information, but be aware that the European Aristocrats project doesn't consider that to be a reliable source.  It certainly has interesting information, but it's not what we would use to determine a LNAB.

Darlene - Co-Leader, British Isles 742-1499 Project

2 Answers

+3 votes

She should be Montfort, her parents are Montfort and she's in Richardson. Richardson cites most of the Magna Carta trails as Montfort as far as I can tell. The first creation of the Barony was spelled Montfort according to CP. The Earls of Leicester were Montfort according to Medieval Lands.

But you will see sources that add a u so its more English than French (Mountfort) or a d at the end (Montford).

by Kirk Hess G2G6 Mach 6 (64.8k points)
+7 votes

I think a number of issues need to be considered here.

Firstly most of the sources for this family come from Douglas Richardson's publications and rightly or wrongly he is well known for insisting on modernising names, and although the Complete Peerage does use the name Montfort for earlier generations, it actually doesn't cover this period being discussed because they descend from an illegitimate son.

I think there is no doubt the family at this stage was using Mountfort at least some of the time see here and here

Also the name seemed to resolve into Mountford in slightly later generations.  See this article  

Given that Wikitree's policy is to use the names they themselves used, and that the name developed into Mountford, I'd be inclined to keep this profile as Mountfort


by John Atkinson G2G6 Pilot (542k points)

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