Some Drewry History

The Name: There are a lot of spellings and mispellings of our names, including the following:
seems to be an Australian version.
Drewry/Drewery seems to have been a common given (first or middle)name once, particularly in the U.S. - From what I have read so far, it seems to have been a custom to record a mother's family name in this way both in England and the U.S.

"And Drury Lane? At first glance it has a rather pedestrian etymology, having been named after one Thomas Drury, who built a house here in the 16th century. But that family name comes from the Middle English 'druerie', meaning 'love token' or 'sweetheart'." in Things To Do In london

Druery (n.) Courtship; gallantry; love; an object of love.

The above quote may be correct regarding the meaning of 'druerie' in Shakespeare's time, but the name came from France with Drieu, a knight of William, Duke of Normandy (the Conqueror), in 1066.
The ancestors of Drieu probably arrived in France as Viking invaders with Thorfinn Rollo (910 ad.) to become farmers in Normandy (the land of the North men).

In the Drury Genealogy Page of Drury pages, it is noted that the name might have derived from the Old French for "lover", or possibly be a shortened form of "de Rouvray" (i.e. from Rouvray - a village near Rouen).
It is suggested, however, that it is more likely to be an extension of the name name of Drieu, becoming Drury as a surname in the thirteenth century. (I like to think that the Drieus were given the nickname 'Druerie' and that it was adopted as a surname when surnames became the fashion.)

Arthur Campling in his introduction to 'The History of the Family of DRURY' (1937) quotes from 'the great pedigree of Drury compiled by Thomas Drury, .. in the time of James I'(1603-25 )
"This right worshipful, and most plentiful family of the Drurys descended from a gentelman of that name who (as in the roll of Bataile Abby in Sussex appeareth) came from Normandy with King William the Conqueror 1066 in which Duckdome of Normandie anno 15 there was a place and (family) of the surname remaining."
I assume this means that there was a family and place in France called Drieu at that time - unless the development of the family name from Drieu to Druri/Drury in the thirteenth century had been mirrored across the channel. Indeed, a Web search discovers a significant number of people named Drieu living in France, but as yet no place called 'Drieu'. Or perhaps there is a link with Dreux near Paris?

In the Descendants of Drieu Drury of Normandy 1066, Drieu is described in this way:

Drieu Drury , of St. Edmunds, Normandy.
Participated in the 1066 Roll of Bataile Abby

I could not find him in the Battle Abbey Roll, nor in the list on the plaque in the church at Dives-sur-Mer. However, given that only 315 commanders are listed out of a force of around 5000 that came with William, there is nothing to suggest that Drieu was not one of the invaders. Of the 315 listed in the Battle Abbey Roll, only 17 knights or so 'are accepted by scholars to be extremely likely to have been at the Battle of Hastings'. Guillaume Malet, Seigneur de Graville is one of the knights/lords recognised as having been in the battle.

"The Original Norman Knight was a man of arms in a band or unit of Knights who fought under William Malet or his son Robert Malet. (Drieu, a Man of Robert Malet, Domesday Book)" (Descendants of Drieu Drury of Normandy 1066)

"Some copies of the Roll of Battle Abbey list Drieu of Normandy (also called Drogo) as a soldier who fought as a "man of Robert Malet", one of the top commanders under William the Conqueror." (Drury Genealogy Page) - The Battle Abbey Roll, lists 4 Malets as participating in the battle.
The Drury Genealogy Page also suggests that "in light of the substantial amount of lands awarded to Drieu as a 'knight's fee' after the battle, it is reasonable to assume that he did fight at the Battle of Hastings in 1066".

Arthur Campling says that:

"it is only the fortune that the Drurys of Suffolk had so close a connection with the Monastery of St. Edmund Bury Ė all powerful in West Suffolk Ė that enabled them to deduce their descent without break through so long a period of time. This connection with the Abbey, through the de Veres, earls of Oxford, is summarized in the following pages, illustrating the history of the descendants of Drieu of St. Edmundís Bury in the county of Suffolk, born about 1080, from whom derive " twenty five generations in direct male line to the present day. " "

"Concerning DRIEU are entries in Domesday Book;
fol. 380 records Ė that Drieu held of William, bishop of Thetford in Oakley in Hartismere hundred 114 acres and half a carucate of land which was held in the time of King Edward by Algar, a freeman under the protection of St. Edmundís.
Fol. 276b records that Drieu, a man of Robert Malet, had seized 10 acres of the demesne land of St. Edmundís in Gissing in the county of Norfolk." (Campling, A., 1937, 'The History of the Family of DRURY In the Counties of Suffolk and Norfolk From the Conquest', London)



Here's something curious,

Can any one tell me anything about this William Drewry?
" Will of Erasmus Sherryn of Pudletowne, County Dorset
Probate granted in London before William Drewry, Doctor of laws Commissary on the seaventeenth daie of April Anno Dom one thousand fyve hundrede and eightye one." (1581)
from Brad Storey (from the book 'Storeys of Old' ?):

"Sir Dru Drury, of Riddlesworth and Lynstead, was born about 1532 and was the son of Sir Robert Drury, of Edgerley. He was also the brother of Sir William Drury, who was sent to Ireland as Governor to attempt to subdue the Rebellion there.....
Sir Dru Drury was retained by Queen Elizabeth throughout her reign and was a trusted knight. For this reason he drew the assignment to accompany Sir Paulet and arrest Mary, Queen of Scots, bring her to London and ultimately was a witness to her execution." (i>Adapted from: 'Mary, Queen of Scots' ~ by Antonia Fraser, 1969)

Currently, there appear to relatively large concentrations of Drewrys in Yorkshire and Norfolk, perhaps also in Suffolk. Elsewhere people have difficulty spelling name the name Drewry - usually spelling it 'Drury' - which indeed might be deemed the 'correct' way.
There is also, I believe, a significant number of Drewrys in Northern Ireland from whence many emigrated to 'New World'.

Tony Drewry, March, 2006 edt 2022