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Ballard




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Surname:  Ballard
Branch:  Ballard
Origins:  British
More Info:  England

Background:  From Ball, a place, a round elevation; and ard, high. The Gaelic word Ballart signifies noisy, boasting. Bal also signifies a lord, and ard, high.




Arms:  Sa. a griffin segreant erm. armed and gorged with a crown Or.
Crest:  A demi griffin with wings endorsed erm. beaked and legged Or.


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Guppys book "Homes of family names", also at the central reference library in Bristol, records the Ballard name as having ancient beginnings in Kent, The Ballards owned Sapington Manor from the time of Henry IV , until that of Philip and Mary. Robert Ballard butler of Richard II, received from his sovereign the manor of West Combe. In the reign of Henry VI , Thomas Ballard, of Horton Parva, was one of the sheriffs of Kent. The Ballards of Worcester and Evesham bear on old Worcestershire name, Philip Ballard who Was mayor of Evesham in 1664 was buried in Evesham church in 1670 , Martin Ballard was mayor of the same town in 1676. The mayor of Worcester in 1723 was William Ballard. Ballard is an ancient English name that was represented six centuries ago in Cambridgeshire, Hunts and other counties including Kent. These two exracts from this publication are not very well researched and a lot of the information is mostly inacurate so please keep an open mind and validate all printed materials relied upon for your research.

William Ballard in the late fifthteenth century was official cannon to the March King Of Arms and sworn to do his utmost to have knowledge of all noble gentleman within his marches and to register Arms within his province of the West of England, Wales and Cornwall. As a consequence The Ballard Book of Arms (XXVI) now resides at the College of Arms in London, recording about 136 blazoned and 420 painted coats of arms accumulated sometime between 1465 and 1490 for and under the supreme command of Edward IV, Edward V and Richard III. William Ballard's task was to establish the validity of such arms and that of there bearers, often in dispute, courts would be held and if claims were upheld, records would be made in Rolls recording pedigrees and arms of such noblemen. Other early namesakes include John Ballard, a Catholic priest, who found fame during the 1580s with his involvement in a conspiracy, with Anthony Babington, to assassinate Queen Elizabeth I in favour of and after the incarceration of Mary Queen of Scots, unsuccessful was their plan, John Ballard was publicly disembowelled after Walsingham, through his ingenuity and slothfulness uncovered their plot, nethertheless the story is far more complexed than the short passage I have afforded this subject and I am sure would further make excellent reading material, "Oxford", "Reign of Elizabeth II"

Incidently Thomas Ballard, ( Son of Gregory Ballard) the Sheriff for Kent and keeper of Canterbury Castle married Phillipe, the daughter of Thomas Walsingham.

Another recorded John Ballard an archer made fame by capturing the archdeacon of Paris during the latter part of the fourteenth century, apparently he deserted from the army before entering Calais and smuggled his prisoner into Colchester Abbey and finally sold him in London for 50, this was common business practice at the time and was encouraged by the monarchy of the day, although this particular instance provoked a stream of angry letters threatening the archer, the abbot and other supposed accomplices with severe penalties.

Name Variations:  Ballard.

References:
One or more of the following publications has been referenced for this article.
The General Armory; Sir Bernard Burke - 1842.
A Handbook of Mottoes; C.N. Elvin - 1860.
English Surnames; C.M. Matthews - 1966.
A Dictionary of English Surnames; P.H. Reaney - 1958.
Adrian Ballard: http://members.lycos.co.uk/AdrianBallard/history.htm


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