Norton Family History
The ancient origin of the name Norton
was found in the irishsurnames.com archives. The name Norton can be of both English and Irish origin. When of Anglos origin it is derived from several places of the name found throughout England. When of Irish origin the name is derived from the native Gaelic O'Neachtain sept and is distinct from MacNaughton which is of Scottish immigrant origin and which is today mostly found in the Northern counties.
A sept or clan is a collective term describing a group of persons whose immediate ancestors bore a common surname and inhabited the same territory. It is also the case that many Irish septs or clans that are related often belong to a larger groups, sometimes called tribes. For example the 'Tribes of Galway' consisted of fourteen distinct families. The 'Tribes of Kilkenny' were ten families, etc.
This Gaelic name has a number of anglicized forms including Naughton, Naghten, Natton and Norton. The Gaelic word that gives these names is 'Neachtain' which translates as 'bright' or 'pure' and which was originally a Gaelic first name. This sept was located in the Western counties of Connaught Province, in Clare and Roscommon especially, where these names can still be mostly found today. The Norton
family crest (or coat of arms) came into existence many centuries ago. The process of creating these coats of arms began as early as the eleventh century although a form of Proto-Heraldry may have existed in some countries prior to this, including Ireland. The new more formalized art of Heraldry made it possible for families and even individual family members to have their very own family crest, coat of arms, including Norton