Spencer family crest


Spencer family crest

Colors on the Spencer family crest explained

Argent (silver) - represents sincerity and peacefulness, two things the Spencers were known for.

Or (Gold) - symbolizes the historical generosity of this ancient family.

Sable (black) - represents constancy and the enduring nature of the Spencer family.

Gules (red) - symbolizes martyrdom and the historic military strength of the Spencers when called upon.


  Symbols on the Spencer family crest explained 


The diagonal bend in the shield typically represents an ancient Spencer family member who distinguished themselves in military service, likely as a successful commander of forces.

The three shells - represent early family members journey to far away regions and a historic strong command over war at sea.

The 'fret' pattern (knotted) - represents early family members skills in the art of persuasion


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Origins of the Spencer family name

The Spencer name is associated with England, and comes originally from the Normans.
The Spencer family name is derived from the Latin word "dispensator", meaning "provider" or more accurately, the role of one high ranking steward.

For a more detailed history, see our crest & history products


Summary of the Spencer family and the Shaw family crest

  • The name was first used popularised in high society by early family members who lived in the village of Spencer in the county of Suffolk, England.
  • The family was granted the village by William the Conqueror in 1066.
  • The name remained in use by the same family for many generations.
  • The Spencer family played a significant role in English history.
  • They were courtiers and statesmen, and held great influence during the reigns of the Tudor and Stuart monarchs.
  • The Spencers were one of the most powerful families in England during the medieval period.
  • They held extensive lands in the counties of Devon, Suffolk, and Northamptonshire.
  • The Spencers were staunch supporters of the House of York during the Wars of the Roses.
  • A notable knighted ancestor is Sir John Spencer who was knighted by Henry VIII in 1513.
  • The most famous member of the family was Diana, Princess of Wales, who was born into the Spencer family in 1961.
  • The Spencer family name was first used in America in the 1600s, when English settlers began using it as a last name.
  • The first Spencer in America was William Spencer, who arrived in Virginia in 1623.
  • The name quickly spread in use throughout the New World of America based on the hard work and strong reputation of the Spencers.
  • While many families can trace ancestry back to middle age England, very few can identify a connection to ancestral nobility as strongly the Spencer  family.