Family Name History
|The French surname DeVille is
toponymic in origin, belonging to that group of surnames derived from
the place where the original bearer once dwelt or where he once held
land. In this case the surname traces its root to the Old French "ville",
ultimately from the Latin "villa". In its original sense the
word meant a "farm" or "rural estate", but with the
passage of time it took on the meaning of a "village" or "small
town", hence its meaning in Modern French, "town". The
name Ville also came to be that of several hamlets and villages in
France, for example Deville-les-Rouens in the Seine Inferieure. The
original bearer may thus have been the "dweller at the farm",
the "dweller at the village" or the "dweller at (the
hamlet called) Ville".
The surname is also found in the variant forms Laville, Delaville, Villette, Lavillette, Devillette, Villers, Villiers and Devillier, amongst many others. The surname is also found in combination with other elements to give, for example, Villefranche ("village with a franchise"), Villelongue ("long village"), Villeneuve ("new village") and Villeroche ("village by the rock").
The surname has had many distinguished bearers in France. Antoine de Ville (1596-?) was a notable Knight of the Orders of St. Maurice and St. Lazare, who wrote many learned works on the art of war and fortifications. Jerorne-Francois, Marquis de Ville (seventeenth century), served under the Duke of Savoy with great courage and is remembered today for his "Memoires". Arnold de Ville of Liege was an inventor who claimed to have created the "machine de Marly" in 1687, some years before it was generally accepted.
The arms below are an example of "canting arms" which make a pictorial allusion to the surname of the bearer.
|BLAZON OF ARMS :
Azure, a town or, masoned sable.
CREST : Three ostrich plumes, one azure between two or.
MOTTO : Et laissez dire.
Translation : And let speak.
THE DE VILLE COAT OF ARMS HEREBY ILLUSTRATED IS OFFICIALlY DOCUMENTED IN RIETSTAP'S ARMORIAL GENERAL. THE ORIGINAL DESCRIPTION OF THE ARMS (SHIELD) IS AS FOLLOWS:
WHEN TRANSLATED THE BLAZON ALSO DESCRIBES THE ORIGINAL COLOURS OF THE DE VILLE ARMS AS:
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