Notes for Evan Thomas
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Origin of Name and Early History. The surname Thomas is the Baptismal form meaning, "The son of Thomas" (from the nickname Thome or Tom, Thome being the earlier form). The name Thomas is originally derived from the Hebrew Language and signifies a twin. In it's earliest use the name was confined to male twins, the feminine form Thomasine having been applied to girls. In the lapse of time, it gradually was applied to others and finally came into general use. Adopted by the Greeks and Latin's and later introduced into Great Britain about 600 AD, the name Thomas enjoyed great popularity. With some slight variations in spelling the name is found in all modern European Languages.
The Welsh claim for the family of Thomas great antiquity and give it a prominent place in the History of the Country. The family of Thomas claims descent from the ancient Kings of Britain from whom the present ruling House of England is descended. The authentic History of the family starts with Uryan (lived in sixth century AD) son of Cynvarde, a Prince of the North Britons who was expelled from his principality by the Saxons. He and his family took refuge in Wales. The line of descent continues to Thomas AP Gruffyd who refused to participate in the internecine conflicts of the House of York and the House of Lancaster. He crossed over to France and joined the Court of the Duke of Bergundy. His son Sir Rhys AP Thomas became wealthy and influential upon returning to England. Sir Rhys espoused the cause of Henry of Lancaster (to whom he was related) and according to some authorities did more than any other person to place Henry VII on the throne of England. He became a favorite of the King and honors were heaped upon him. He became a member of the King's Council and Commissioner of the King's Mines. His son Griffith AP Thomas (1478-1557)
was made a Knight of the Order of Bath in 1501. His son Rice AP Griffith (born 1508) was involved in a plot against the King, was executed and
many of his holdings were confiscated. His son Thomas AP Rice was
brought back to Wales from which the family had fled. His son John
Philip Thomas inherited his father's lands in Wales and had issue: Evan
(born 1580.) Evan Thomas had issue: Capt. Evan Jr.; Philip; Rice.
Philip emigrated to Maryland in 1651 with his wife Sarah Harrison and
three children. Capt. Evan first came to Boston in 1635 and settled
there about 1640. He is the ancestor of William of Hardwick.
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