History of the Parrish name
From very ancient history it can be ascertained that the name
parisii can be found as far back as 250 b.c. they were a celtic clan
that lived in paris, france. Roman invasion scattered them different
places. The parisii spelling gradually gave way to de paris. (from
Paris) A Foucher de paris was one of the knights that accompanied
william the conqueror on his invasion of england in 1066. The almost
continuous presence of the french preposition "de" followed by
various spellings of paris clearly indicates that the first to use
the "de Paris" designation did so to distinguish himself from others
in the vicinity with the same given name. It further appears that
the french character of the name begins to disappear in england in
the 13th and 14th centuries probably because
of the unpopularity of englishmen retaining french-sounding names
during periods of hostility between the english and and french. The
french "de" seems to have disappeared first and then later the
letter "h" was added to form the surname Parish. The fact that
church districts in england at the time were called parishes may
also have had some influence on the name formation.
A Parrish descendant in Georgia takes issue with this theory.
"This is a variant spelling of the name Paris, which in england and
Scotland designated an immigrant from Paris, france. It definitely
is not from the church district called parish, as this would not be
a specific identifying word where there were so many priases in each
shire or county."
Early english chancery records for the years 1385-1467 give the
following variations of the paris surname as: Paryce, parys, paryse
From bardsley's dictionary the following names appear: wilhemus
de paryseh and thomas de paryshe of yorkshire in 1379 and majorie de
paryshe of yorkshire in 1455; robert de paris of hertfordshire,
ralph de paris of kent, roger de paris of london, and johannes paris
of yorkshire in 1573. Recorded elsewhere was a robert parris, son of
thomas parris, gentleman, of hitchen, herfordshire, who was granted
use of arms on 15 june 1573.
From surnames of scotland by black we find: Guerusse de paris,
london 1158, lotyn de paris, lincholnshire 1273 and richard de paris,
In Scotland, walter de paris witnessed a charter; john de paris
rendered homage to the english crown in ayshire 1296; william de
parys witnessed a deed in aberdeen 1283; john of paris was witness
in dumbartoon 1506 and elspet paris of west lothian was judged
guilty of witchcraft in 1624.
Family tradition has always said that parrish and parish were two
different families. Research tells us that this is just a "family
story." Perhaps the best example is a document in Paris, Il. My
great grandfather's wife was relinquishing her dowers rights in an
inheritance. In that one document he is william paris, william
parish and william parrish.
So, check all spellings!!