Ancient Origin of Shattockes

This is the style in which your Celtic 70th great grandfather lived. Reconstruction of a late La Tène period settlement in Havranok (2nd–1st century BC) - Wikipedia

Much of the following information has been corrected and expanded in a book on our family history. You can download it here:

This website organizes research I have done into the Shattocke ancestral family, including such name variants as Shattock, Shattuck, Shaddick, Shaddock, Shadduck and so on. It includes research on our genetic cousins the Parrishs and Byars, who formed a branch of our family about 1640 AD.

  1. This "Ancient Origin" page explores the family's deep history, all the way back to 23,000 years ago.

  2. The "English Heritage" page picks up the story at the end of the medieval period, using the genealogical record of our family in Somerset and Devon in England.

  3. The "Diaspora" page describes the emigration of a major portion of the family to the British colonies due to economic, political and religious upheaveals in the 17th to 20th centuries.

  4. The "Famous" page chronicles the intersection of our ancestors with history in people and places.

  5. You can explore the main branches of the worldwide family tree under the "Branches" menu.

  6. You may be interested in participating in our DNA research. Read about my privacy policy here. Contact me.

Use the search function at the top of the page to find a specific reference.

Note: When I am referring to the entire family I will use "Shattocke or Shattock" as a generic reference to all the different spellings of the name found in the records, principally Shattock, Shattuck, Shaddock, Shaddick, and Shadduck.

Below is a visual snapshot of the state of the research to date. Click on the tree to enlarge it. The graphic shows our descent from our common ancestor (Y17171) who was born about 1350 AD. The diagram shows how we branched from two sons or grandsons of our common ancestor in subsequent centuries. I am assuming they branched from the Milverton Shattocks common ancestor.

Summary: The Story So Far...

Let's pick up the trail in south west Asia.

We are a wandering tribe that in a very ancient time came out of Africa and can be found 23,000 years ago in the vast, treeless Eurasian Pontic steppes stretching from the northern shores of the Black Sea as far east as the Caspian Sea. Around 6000 years ago our ancestors migrated to central Europe. Around about 4,500 years ago we were members of the fearsome La Tène Celts whose cultural influence spread throughout Europe. DNA studies show we are strongly associated with the Gauls, who descend from the La Tène Celts, and are found in northern France, Benelux and the German Rhineland. The German Rhineland seems to be a key location in our ancestry.

We eventually migrated to England. The earliest records of Shattockes are found in the Somerset, England villages of Staplegrove (1450) and Stogumber (1454). A study of the early English parish records in the 16th century indicates that all Shattockes in England are found in the villages in an area of about 130 square miles (335 km2) in west Somerset and with an outlier in the village of North Molton on the border of Devon and Somerset. There is however a possibility that we are descended from Shattocks in the geographical area called East Anglia. See our exploration of this possible scenario.

From the body of research I have conducted, the most likely scenario is that a wool or cloth merchant first settled in Staplegrove, now a suburb of Taunton, either from East Anglia or directly from Flanders or west Germany, along the Rhine valley.

There is plenty of evidence that we were heavily involved in the wool trade, as cloth merchants and weavers. Religious and political upheavals caused a pilgrimage of North American ancestors in 17th century. When the wool and cloth trade declined English Shattockes farmed and became agricultural servants. When the industrial revolution in the late 18th century reduced farm labor, our English forefathers in Devon left England and settled in Canada and Australia. Today descendants are found primarily (87%) in the former English colonies, from Massachusetts to California, from New Brunswick to British Columbia, from Western Australia to Queensland, in New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, and we have ancestors buried in India.

Shattock Coat of Arms. On page 430 of Fairbairn's book he describes the crest as "SHATTOCK, Wilts., in dexter's hand a lion's paw, erased, ppr. Pl. 94, cr. 13."

It appears our early success in wool and cloth led to land ownership and our wealth was a key factor leading to the establishment of major branches of the family. The early west Somerset branches of the family and London branches of the family features entrepreneurs, trades people and merchants. Some rose to high social rank in England and the colonies. There is a record of a "Sir" Thomas "Shottoke" in his mother's will of 1533 and a Sir John Shattock in a legal document dated 1570. Other Shattockes are addressed as "Sir" in documents found in the late 16th century. However there are no records of the granting of knighthood. There is a Shattock coat of arms. It is found in the book "Fairbank's Crests of the Leading Families In Great Britain and Ireland" by James Fairbairn (New York, 1911) plate 94 crest 13. The hand rising from a rope-like wreath of twisted silk is very common in heraldry, and specifically grasping an object.

A wreath of silk was used on the helmet of a knight to fasten the coat of arms so that in battle he was not struck down by his fellow soldiers, mistaking him for the enemy. Of course if he was wearing such a coat of arms, it suggests he was a knight. There is a William Shattock who was garrisoned at Berwick in Northumberland, on the England - Scotland border from ca. 1583- ca.1600. His high rank as a standard bearer may have entitled him to a coat or arms and knighthood. (His "Game of Thrones" story is told here.) Although there is no royal blood in our lineage, members of our family did reach to the highest ranks of society in the past. A few of them married peers, like Mary Bellett Shattock in 1868. She may have been he daughter of a slave owner. In fact Shattockes in history stretch from criminals to priests and captains of industry, from circus sideshows to actual heros, from desperately poor Londoners to Supreme Court Justices.


The family tree at the top of this page is based on DNA data found in living descendants and genealogical discoveries. The data from over 130 descendants reveals that there are only three branches of the family that have survived since the 15th century. The small number of Shattockes now living in the world and the few number of branches supports the DNA evidence of a single founder born in the 14th century. Additional evidence is how few Shattockes are found in parish, tax and protestation records in the 16th and 17th centuries. By 1642 there were only 31 Shattocke males over the age of 18 in England who were compelled to sign the Protestation Oath. Three Shattockes over the age of 18 lived in the American colonies.

A more detailed look at the way the family branched can be found in a sub-page of this one. The article explains how DNA testing is used to find or validate family trees.

Now let's look at the branches we have discovered so far.

Robert Walter Weir - the embarkation of the pilgrims

The Stogumber Shattocks and their descendants the Massachusetts Shattucks are the most numerous Shattockes in the world, about 8,000 strong out of a total Shattocke population of 14,000 - 15,000. They share a common ancestor with the Stogumber London Shattocks, who originally came from Somerset. DNA studies have so far confirmed Massachusetts Shattucks are descended from a single individual, William Shattuck (ca. 1622-1672). The evidence also indicates a very large southern population of Shattockes, the South Carolina Shaddocks, also descend from William Shattuck.

When records began in the early 16th century, "Shattickes" are found in North Molton, a border village with a thriving wool industry and a mining industry. See the North Molton page for a study I made of the history of North Molton. Subsequently North Molton Shattockes spread north and south, occupying north Devon and branching off to the Yarnscombe Shattockes and its sub-branches the New Brunswick Shaddicks, the Tawstock Shaddocks, and the Burrington Shaddocks.

Another branch of the North Molton Shattockes are the Fremington Shaddicks. While the earliest settlements in America appear to have been west Somerset Shattocks, later emigrations to Canada and Australia included Shaddocks and Shaddicks from Devon.

The village of Culmstock is at the border of Somerset in the north east corner of Devon. It seems likely the village became inhabited by Shattockes from Somerset, although this statement waits for genealogical or genetic proof. A major branch of the Culmstock Shaddocks is descended from a female Shattocke.

Direct descendants of west Somerset Shattocks near Taunton, Somerset are the Milverton Shattockes, the Staplegrove Shattocks and the Bishop's Lydeard Shattocks. A James Shaddock, Quaker, from Milverton settled in Pennsylvania in 1686 and his descendants formed a branch in Virginia in the late 18th century. They now are found throughout the U.S. south and mid-west. See the Virginia Shaddocks. There are also Shattocks from the Milverton branch who have settled in New Zealand and Australia.

There was a Shattocke present at the founding of three major colonies in America: the Massachusetts Bay colony (Massachusetts Shattucks), the Pennsylvania colony (Milverton Shattocks) and the Chesapeake Bay colony (Byars and Parrishs). Shaddocks and Shaddicks emigrated to Canada throughout the 19th century.

The Mourambine Western Australia Shaddicks descend from a transported convict who made good in the new world.

There are other branches of the Shattocke family whose attachment to the family tree is unknown at this point because we have not found a descendant who we can DNA test,

There are branches that appear to be unrelated to us, such as the Birmingham Shaddocks and the Portland Shattucks.

We know when Shattockes emigrated to the New World. But when did Shattockes arrive in England from continental Europe? For the answer to that question be have to go back deep into ancient history.

Ancient Origins: Our Genetic History

Shattockes and our Byars - Parrish cousins belong to the major branch of the human family called the R haplogroup, also known as R-M207. Descendants of this branch are found in Europe, South Asia and Central Asia. We are descended from a fork of R-M207 called R1B (aka R-M343). R1B is the most common paternal lineage in Western Europe. It is found in other areas of Asian and Africa as well. It is found in high frequency in the Americas and Australasia because of European migrations to these areas.

The graphic at left shows our line of descent from paleothic times some 23,000 years ago. (For a tree going all the way back to Africa, check out the "Out of Africa" tree on a subpage. I narrate the migration path.)

M34 is the mutation found in descendants of R1b. R1b is the name of this branch in phylogenetic diagrams.

How do we find the road map of our ancient origins? One way we can look into the deep history of the family is to read the genetic code stored in Shattocke DNA, passed down from one generation to the next unchanged. Or almost unchanged. Tiny changes to the genetic code, one letter in the genetic alphabet, do occur, very rarely, about once every 144 years. These one letter mistakes (called SNPs) are faithfully copied to the next generation and all subsequent generations. They can be used as markers that define new branches in the human tree. For our family there are several markers that we Shattockes (and Byars and Parrishs) share in common.

These genetic markers are called SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms). Some SNPs have two or more names because they were discovered in different labs. The larger red SNPs are the ones you will commonly come across if you study Shattocke ancient genetic origins.

The current consensus is that R1b originated in the Eurasian Pontic steppes and expanded into Western Europe, bringing with them the Indo European languages. If you follow the location names on the right side of the R1b / M34 graphic, you will be following the migration path of your ancestors from the Pontic steppes, west to central Europe and eventually further west to Somerset, the English county in the southwest of England.

What distinguishes us from most people of West European descent is the mutation we carry called U152 (aka S28). Descendants of U152 are most frequent (20–44%) in Switzerland, Italy, France and Western Poland, with additional instances exceeding 15% in some regions of England and Germany.

This is a very important point because it sets us apart from people who are descended from Nordic-Germanic tribes. It is virtually absent in northern Germany, Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. It is found in about 10-15 % of southern England descendants, where Shattockes are found. This map from Eupedia shows the distribution of U152 (aka S28) in Europe.

We are descended from Indo-European speakers who invaded Western Europe and destroyed the Megalithic cultures who preceded them by several millennia. They had lived on the steppes herding cattle, not farming cereals. Their bronze weapons and horses gave them a military advantage over the people they conquered. Genetic studies show women descendants of these invaders as genetically similar to the conquered people, suggesting the Steppe warriors killed men and took on women as concubines and wives. Or as the master elite, time favored their offspring, magnified by polygamy. The further west they pushed, the greater number of indigenous women descendants are found among modern Europeans. (If your mother is of European descent, she may be descended from these indigenous women, something you might be able to determine through an mtDNA test.)

The above map above shows how U152 spread into England, with the highest incidence of descendants in the east along the coast. These are our nearest cousins on the human tree. They arrived in England nearly four thousand years ago. But there is a very important caveat. Most of them belonged to a sub-branch of U152 called L2. We belong to a different sub-branch called Y16889. Over 90% of British men who are U152 carry the L2 mutation. Besides Shattockes, only 5 descendants of Y16889 have been discovered in England. The vast majority of Y16889 descendants are found in the areas of continental Europe where U152 is found. We are descendants of La Tène Celts, but not many of our branch crossed the Channel to England. When they crossed the channel is still an open question. However a study I have made of one of the earliest Shattockes on record (1454 AD), Roger Shattocke of Stogumber in west Somerset, suggests he was not descended from the ancestors of the villagers. Stogumber was a Saxon village when the Normans invaded. The Saxons belong to a completely different branch of the human family than Shattockes, most likely U106.

The La Tène Celts were are culture, and had a somewhat mixed genetic heritage. Besides the U152 mutation, there were Celts with the DF27 and L21 mutations (the latter not be confused with the L2 sub-branch of U152). The three branches, U152, L21 and DF27, were closely related.

The tree diagram at the left shows how our ancestors on the Pontic Steppe branched as they invaded and settled in Central and Western Europe.

The most common paternal lineage found in Britain is Ibero Atlantic, who have the mutation DF27 (aka S250). They are our neighboring branch. These are the Celts who went south from Central Europe, all the way to Spain and then traded along the Atlantic coast to Britain and eventually all the way up to Scandinavia, bringing the Ibero Atlantic Celtic language with them.

While the Ibero Atlantic Celts came to England from the south, the Atlantic Celts (L21 / M529) are thought to have arrived in England through Belgium and northern France. L21 is found in high concentration in Wales, Ireland and Scotland.

Of course the most famous incursions into England, in fact violent incursions, were the Vikings, Angles and Saxons. The U106 / S21 Proto-Germanic descendants of the original Pontic Steppe invaders are found in high concentrations in the Netherlands and North-West Germany. The genetic mix of Scandinavia has more variety but U106 is found in high concentrations. One of the reasons why descendants of original Britain inhabitants are found in Scandinavia is that Viking raiders brought back slaves bearing the L21 mutation to Iceland and Norway. Anglo Saxons are largely U106.

I have provided an abbreviated overview of where we fit into the European genetic landscape. DNA sampling of ancient remains and contemporary European descendants is continuing to revolutionize our understanding of where we came from and our closest relatives. I expect to return to edit this page continuously.

Our La Tène Ancestors

Celtic costumes typical in the Celtic La Tène culture, 3rd century BC. Wikipedia image.

Our U152 ancestors belonged to a culture found in central Europe, defined by modern day Northern Italy, eastern France, Switzerland, Austria, southwest Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. Broadly described they were Italo Celts, speaking a form of the Celtic language. More precisely they belonged to what ethnographers call the La Tène (lä-ˈten) culture, named after an archaeological site on the shores of a lake in Switzerland where artifacts created by these people were found. The La Tène elite power structure arose at the fringes of the early Iron Age Halstatt elite power structure, which collapsed between 450 and 400 BC. Where the Halstatt lived in fortified enclosures on hill sides, La Tène people lived in small, dispersed, self-sufficient settlements in the valleys and plains below.

By the 4th century BC the La Tène had become over-populated. They developed a warlike culture where warriors became the elite members of a society that was otherwise not stratified like the earlier Halstatt culture. They began raiding the rich Mediterranean communities they found south and east of them. They were considered barbarians by the Roman and Greek classical cultures. Yet, through trading, they were heavily influenced by Mediterranean culture, and the Celtic culture north of the English channel.

The growing power of Rome and the constant state of war that La Tène brought upon themselves, along with increasing social stratification, eventually led to their decline and defeat at the hands of the Romans by the first century BC. Some scholars even suggest their love of wine and feasting made them too fat and contented to live up to their warrior ideals.

The take-away from all this is that we do not belong to the tribes that inhabited southern Europe or northern Europe. We do not descend from the Vikings or the Angles or Saxons. We are descendants of the La Tène Celts who expanded from their original home in the German-Swiss Alps and whose origin was the southern branch of the Yamnaya people of the Pontic Steppe in Eurasia. If you are a Shaddock, Shaddick, Shattuck or a closely related genetic cousin (Paris, Parrish, Byars, Byers), have you been calling yourself an Anglo-Saxon all these years? You are not. Call yourself a Celt or more precisely La Tène. (Sounds like "La Ten.")

A7993 Sister Branch to the Shattockes

Our La Tène Celt ancestor, U152, lived about 4,500 years ago. A number of branches emanate from him. Shown here is the specific branch we descend from, BY1368 (aka PH2997).

The nearest ancestor to us is an as yet unnamed branch with a single descendant with the surname Stant. We share a common ancestor with him, Y16884.

A recent study of the branch of the human family we belong to, Z36, makes it likely we were Gauls. This information comes from a regional study of Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg) and France at the site Eupedia. The fact that we are most likely descended from the Gauls of Benelux, northern France and the German Rhineland, fills in the gap between our arrival in England and our origins in the Alpine Celts. It makes sense that part of the ancient Alpine Celts would migrate across northern France to Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands and the German Rhineland. Here is the excerpt from the article:

The La Tène culture is the one most strongly associated with the ancient Gauls. The territory of Gaul encompassed all modern France, and all the Low Countries south of the Rhine, as well as the German Rhineland, which happens to be the region where U152 is found at the highest frequencies outside Italy. U152 can therefore be considered to be a marker of both Gaulish and Italic ancestry, depending on the subclade. Gaulish invasions of northern Italy, the latter Roman conquest of Gaul, and the numerous intermarriages across the two sides of the Alps mean that both Italic and Gaulish subclades are found scattered across Western Europe nowadays, which makes it more difficult to distinguish the Celtic from the Italic branches. Nevertheless, at present it appears that the Z36 subclade is mostly Gaulish and more widely associated with the La Tène expansion, while the Z56 subclade appears to be mostly Italic/Roman.

The Shattockes belong to a Z36 subclade that shows a lot of French, German and Swiss matches, making it more likely we come from the northern France, Benelux and possibly the German Rhineland where it borders on Benelux.

The Shattocke Y17171 common ancestor is estimated to have been born about AD 1350. We do not know where he lived, Europe or England. All we know is that DNA testing has discovered there are two main Shattocke branches and up to six sub-branches that emanate from Y17171, all who have genealogies that trace back to the west Somerset in England. It is probable that Shattockes did not begin branching until the early 15th century. In other words Y17171 only had one surviving son and possibly his grandson only had one surviving son. Y17171 was probably born just as the plague struck England. This graphic tells the story:

Around 1350 when the plague struck, the population fell off of a cliff, and for 100 years the population slowly declined. As you see on the graphic, it continued to decline until 1450. Then it recovered. That is the most plausible explanation for the formation of the major branches of the family in the late 15th century.

The Earliest Shattocke Records

There are records of similarly sounding names to Shattock that go back as far as 1180 A.D., cited in Christopher Chattock's Antiquities book and in other records that I have discovered in my research. See Possible Forms of the Name in the Medieval Period. But I am going to confine this section to the most certain occurrence of the surname in records: Shattocke.

The oldest records of Shattockes find them living in Bishop's Hull (1450), just outside of Taunton in west Somerset and Stogumber (1454), further west. What makes the discovery of these old documents particularly important is that both documents spell the surname the same, "Shattocke."

East Anglia Shattocks

There is a will of William Shattock dated 1382, indicating he was a rector at St. John the Baptist church in Norwich, Norfolk. Was he a Shattock or Shaddock ancestor? At this point the evidence for that proposition is thin since we do not have a paper trail back to him from Somerset Shattocks. His surname is spelled as Chattock, Schattok, Schattock, and Shattock in various documents, including his will of 1382. The Chattocks of northern England are not related to Shattocks or Shaddocks, so it is possible this William is a Chattock and west Somerset Shattocks are not descended from him. If he did turn out to be a west Somerset Shattock ancestor, it would not be surprising because Norwich in East Anglia was a major cloth centre, with a market that attracted wool and cloth tradesmen and merchants from all over England and across the Channel in Flanders. In fact the area was settled by Flanders weavers invited by the king to teach English weavers their weaving and cloth trades. In this scenario, a Shattock from East Anglia would have settled in England's other major cloth centre, Taunton in west Somerset. See East Anglia Shattocks.

The Taunton Shattocks

The oldest documented record of a Shattocke is found at the South West Heritage Centre in Norton Fitzwarren, Somerset. Document DD\SP/317,318 is an old record of tenants in the Manor of Taunton Deane, the old administrative district in Taunton and the surrounding area. There is a Thomas Shattocke who is listed as a tenant in Bishop's Hull, just a mile and a half from Taunton, in 1450. He is perhaps the same Thomas Shattocke listed as a tenant in Nailsbourne, also just six miles from Bishop's Hull, in 1459. He is perhaps the same Thomas Shattocke in 1470 listed as a tenant in Staplegrove, just a mile south of Nailsbourne, now a suburb of Taunton. In 1483 he appears again in Staplegrove, along with a second Thomas Shattocke, presumably his son. This appears to be a single individual who moved from Bishop's Hull, to Nailsbourne and finally Staplegrove. There is a female Shattocke who appears in the tenants list during this period, a Johanna Shattocke in 1506 who is listed as a tenant in Bishop's Hill, probably a widow who owned the lease on the land. Finally there is another female Shattocke, Alice Shattocke, who is a tenant in 1491 in Staplegrove. Subsequently there there is a rapid expansion of Shattockes in Staplegrove in the 16th century.

See a transcription of the tenant's list here.

The list of names in the document help stitch together a paper trail of Staplegrove ancestors. For the Staplegrove Shattocks, the 1533 will of John Shattock of Staplegrove is a cornerstone because it mentions the Staplegrove church and lists his children and wife. The names in the will match up with the names on the tenants list, suggesting that Thomas Shattocke of Bishop's Hull 1450 was John Shattock of Staplegrove's father.

chyd. of Peter and Paul in Taunton—Wells iiijd—d. Elsabeth xx nobbles—my son John all my yer [gear] in my shoppe as well as v [£] worth—Thomas my son vjd xiijs iiijd other he to have the mansion other [or] tenement the wh. I dyd dwell in—Jone my d. xls—hye crosse in the ch. of Stapulgrowe xxd—sepulker of the same ch. Xx d—Sir John Hykelege xijd—John Gune viijd.

Res.—Alice my wyff.

Overseer.—John Sauser.

Witn.—Thos. Smyth, Thos. Gymmose.

Prob. in eccl. Cath. Well., 29 Dec. 1533.

"Thomas Shattock" is one of the first names to appear in the Taunton parish record, recording his burial April 18, 1559.

It is likely that the Thomas Shattocke who is the first Shattocke to appear in the Staplegrove parish record was the son of John Shattock who he bequeathed his dwelling to him in the 1533 will.

Stogumber Shattocks and the Cloth Trade

Is Thomas Shattocke of Bishop's Hull the founder of the Shattocke family? There is actually another ancient record of a Shattocke in west Somerset, in the village of Stogumber further west of Taunton. In a talk given by Mary Siraut, editor of the Victoria County History of Somerset, in 2005 in Somerset, she tell us of the earliest evidence for the cloth trade in Stogumber. She found the reference in the Registers of Bishop Beckyngton, transcribed by the Somerset Record Society Vol 49, page 307: “The earliest evidence in fact dates from the fifteenth century when there was a fulling mill at Vexford, and there were several chapmen, (cloth dealers) working in the parish already. In 1454 one Roger Shattock of Stogumber lost six dozen of white and russet cloths worth five marks when a Nettlecombe man broke into his home and made off with them." Roger Shattock was a dealer in cloth, in a village (Stogumber) at a crossroads between regional centers (Bridgwater and Taunton) and coastal ports (Watchet and Minehead).

This reference makes Stogumber a possible home village for our common ancestor. But Stogumber is recorded in the Domesday book, cataloging William the Conqueror's new kingdom after 1066 as a Saxon site, including a minster, a Saxon religious building. Since Shattockes are unrelated to Saxons, Stogumber is most likely not the ancient birth place of Shattocks.

Taunton or Staplegrove is more likely the original home of Shattocks in west Somerset. Taunton was the largest town in west Somerset and drew people from afar to its medieval fairs and markets, especially merchants involved in the export market who highly valued a cloth made locally, called "Tauntons." The cloth makers guilds had a stranglehold on the finishing of cloth in large towns like Taunton at the time. It was not until fulling mills were established in the outlying villages, like Stogumber, that local people found employment as spinners, weavers and fullers in places like Stogumber. This makes it more likely that Roger Shattocke himself was born in Taunton or Staplegrove rather than Stogumber.

It is noteworthy is that Roger Shattock was a cloth merchant. That would have made him an important member of his community at a time when merchants held a lot of local power. At the time the wool trade was a major source of wealth for the kingdom and Stogumber lay at the crossroads between Taunton and Bridgwater in the interior and the ports of Watchet and Minehead on the coast. The "Wolcotts" of Tolland were major wool traders who operated out of the coastal ports and had business or family connections with Shattocks. Alexander Shattock is a beneficiary in the will of Henry Woolcott.

This raises an interesting possibility. Was Roger Shattocke of Stogumber the son or grandson of the original merchant immigrant to England who first visited the cloth market in Taunton in the medieval age? Merchants by the nature of their occupation traveled and at the time there was major commerce with German merchants in the Rhine Valley and Flanders. There is no definitive answer to that question. What does appear to be the case is that Roger Shattockes and Thomas Shattocke, either sons or grandsons of the founder of all Shattockes (Y17171 ) lived only 10 miles (15 km) apart in west Somerset around 1450.

An examination of early documents and the places they referenced make it clear that modern Shattocks amd Shaddock descend from a single individual whose grandsons or great grandsons are found in west Somerset as early as the 14th century. It is possible the first Shattock or Shaddock in west Somerset came from the other major cloth centre, Norwich in Norfolk. But where on the European continent did Shattocks or Shaddocks come from before arriving in England sometime in the medieval period? Does the surname provide a clue?

Shown in blue are the locations were Shattocks are found in the first part of the 16th century when parish records began. In red are later locations. The outliers in North Molton and Bampton have been traced back to Stogumber.

The Spelling of the Surname

The Normans brought the practice of using surnames to England among the nobility. The use of "bynames," such as "William the Conqueror" or his early byname "William the Bastard," was already in use before the Conquest. Many surnames evolved out of bynames. Johnson, for example is probably derived from the byname "son of John." As records began to be kept in the late 11th and early 12th centuries, the use of bynames to identify individuals gradually came into wide practice, although it is difficult to determine to what extent among the lower classes. One class of people does deserve special mention, merchants, because one of the earliest records of the Shattocke name identifies Roger Shattocke of Stogumber as a merchant in 1454. During the 12th century records of commercial transactions exploded in number and identifying merchants and land owning people with a byname became common practice. The other earliest record of the Shattocke name was Thomas Shattocke, the land owning tenant of Taunton Deane in 1450. Stogumber and Taunton are villages with large, multi-generational Shattocke families in the earliest records. Milverton in Somerset and North Molton are the other villages in the early records with large, multi-generational Shattocke families. All these villages were centers for the cloth trade and housed mostly weavers and other people involved in the wool and cloth trades.

Etymological studies have long treated the Shattock name as having a German origin. But what is interesting is that they seem to treat "Shaddock," not "Shattock" as the earlier form of the name. As it turns out there is a German cognate of Shaddock, to wit "Schadock." In fact, there are a lot of Schadocks in Germany and north east U.S. (immigrants from Germany). "Schadecks" and "Schadicks" are also found in Germany.

In "An Etymological Dictionary of Family and Christian Names" by William Arthur (1857) he has the following entry for the Shaddock name (page 32):

SHADDOCK or SCHADECK. Local. The name of a lordship in Germany.

By "local" he means the name was derived from a place name.

In "British Family Names: Their Origin and Meaning" by Henry Barber (London, 1894) he apparently consulted twenty-seven genealogical sources in developing his list of British surnames. For Shaddick, his entry is:

Shaddick. G. Schadeck ; a p.n. (p. 194)

The initials "p.n." stand for "personal name," suggesting the name is not derived like many names (such as "Smith" as a derivation of "blacksmith") but rather it is simply a family name.

For Shattock Barber has:

Shattock. G. Schattke; a p.n. See Shaddick

For Shaddock he says, see Shaddick.

The oldest etymological dictionaries of British surnames thought Shattock, Shaddock and Shaddick derived from medieval Low German not Middle English.

I think the Arthur dictionary etymologist was familiar with the Schadeck name in Germany. It can be found among modern Germans. And "Schadock" appears in Germany and the United States. To see how Germans would pronounce a name like "Schadock and Schadeck" I ran them through the Google online translator. At the bottom of the input boxes you will see a speaker symbol. If you click on it you will hear something amazing. The German surname sounds exactly like the English pronunciations of "Shaddock" and "Shaddick." Try it: Google Translate. What adds credibility to this theory, that the origin is in a German form of the name, is the fact that "Shattock" and "Shattuck" are only found in Somerset and the areas where Somerset Shattocks settled in New England. Early on, when Shattucks and Shattocks left New England and England for points south, the spelling (and presumably pronunciation) of the name reverted to "Shaddock" and "Shaddick." The German surname Schattke does not appear to have a pronunciation close to "Shaddock" or "Shattock." So I think the Barber dictionary may be wrong about the German root for Shattock. The German root is probably Schadeck or Schadock.

But absence DNA proof of the relationship of German Schadocks to English Shattocks or Shaddocks, we must consider the alternative. Dr. Peter McClure, principal etymologist at the Family Names in the United Kingdom Project, University of England, has this to say about the Shattocke surname (in an email to me):

I think that there is the possibility that the surname is an English locative name from a lost or unidentified place named in Middle English as *Shadok or *Shatok. This would be either from an unrecorded Old English *scēaduc ‘little boundary’, or from one of two Old English compounds scēad + āc ‘boundary oak’ or scēat + āc ‘corner oak’. A name of this type + Old English hyrst ‘wooded hill’ is possibly attested in the Kent place-name Shadoxhurst, recorded in the 13th century as Shattokeshurst, Sadhokesherst, and Chaddekesherst. You can see the evidence and explanations in V. Watts, Cambridge Dictionary of English Place-Names, at Shadoxhurst. I am going to put this tentative suggestion in the second edition of the Oxford dictionary.

Family Names in the United Kingdom Project, University of the West of England (unpublished research).

The problem with etymological studies of our name is that similar sounding surnames are often confused with our own. In the case of the Oxford Dictionary of Family Names, Chaddock and Shaddock variations of the name are considered to have a common root. But DNA testing of northern England Chattocks and south western Shaddocks and Shattocks has proven that they are not remotely related. (See "Chaddocks" below.) The Dictionary will be corrected in its next edition.

The problem with the Shattock or Shaddock surname is that there no good evidence for identifying it either as a Middle English name or Low German name. Etymology is not going to provide a definitive answer to the question of whether Shattock was the name of a German medieval immigrant to England.

I have always thought that Shattocks came to England as either cloth merchants or cloth workers. This is consistent with the documentary evidence that the major branches of the family were founded by skilled cloth tradesmen: Roger Shattocke of the Stogumber Shattocks, John Shattock of the Staplegrove Shattocks who probably owned a weaving workship, Thomas and James Shattock, weaver and serge maker of the Milverton Shattocks, Thomas Shattock of the North Molton Shatticks, William Shattuck weaver and founder of American Shattucks, London Shattocks descended from John Shattock, a wool comber. But "Shattock" or "Shaddock" or not Flemish surnames. But it is still possible Shattocks and Shaddocks were German weavers. In his study "The Barbarous Years," Bernard Bailyn shows us just how ethnically mixed towns and cities were across the Channel from England. Refuges from persecution by Catholic Spain and Portugal streamed into Amsterdam. "Of that city's 685 wealthiest citizens, 160 were Flemish or Walloon in origin, 30 were German, and there were Italian, English and Scandinavians among them as well." (p. 192) Amsterdam became a major transition point for tradespeople escaping Catholic oppression and seeking to improve their lot in more lucrative markets. Norwich in East Anglia and Taunton in west Somerset would be natural markets for tradespeople with critical skills useful for the burgeoning cloth markets.

There is also another interesting study found in the collection of academic studies, "The Medieval Town: A Reader in English Urban History 1200-1540" (Ed. Richard Holt & Gervase Rosser). In an essay on Stratford-upon-Avon, the author E.M. Carus-Wilson points out that surnames developed differently on rural English manors than in the towns (boroughs). In the early medieval period, agricultural workers on rural manor farms "were known simply as plain Alured, Eynulf, Frewin, Teodulf and so forth, though if the name was a common one they were often further described as, for instance, 'William son of Lothair' as distinguished from 'William son of Hereward.'" (pp. 62-63) Modern surnames like "Donaldson" are an obvious example. While peasants on manors were tied to the manor as serfs, peasants who became freemen in the towns came from all over the place and engaged in crafts, so they largely had occupational or place names. The most obvious example in our context is the surname "Weaver." In his study Carus-Wilson found a third of manorial tenants had surnames based on the name one or the other parent, while in the town only three out of 233 residents had surnames derived from a parent. It was natural to describe a person travelling on business by the location he came from, or a neighbor in town by his occupation. A full two-thirds of town dwellers had names based on place names or occupations. The fact that the Shattock or Shaddock name does not have an unambiguous etymology, such as an occupation, place name, nickname or other root word or compound of root words, may have been understood by early etymologists and the reason why they thought the name derived from a foreign surname, with one suggesting a place name in Germany and another simply as a German family name. The evidence is that the common ancestor of Shattocks and Shaddocks was involved in the export cloth trade. He may have been a clothier, merchant or cloth worker who arrived from a town in Germany with a family surname. Certainly if he was conducting business, he would need to use a surname for legal documents.

Variations of the Surname Shattocke

The variations in the spelling of the surname (e.g. Shattock, Shaddock, Shaddick, Shattuck, Shadduck) is a helpful tool in tracking the migrations of Shattockes in the modern period (after 1500 AD). The greatest diversity in the spelling of the surname is found in America. A helpful resource in this regard is "Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America" (Oxford University Press, 1989) by David Hackett Fischer. What we learn from Albion's Seed is that the New England twang has its roots in the dialects of the original colonists home in Somerset and East Anglia. To wit, the Somerset dialect transformed "o" into "u" hence Shattuck rather than Shattock. They would say "Zumerset" instead of "Somerset." The sharp Yankee twang preserves the "tt" in Shattock, hence Shattuck. Meanwhile the southern drawl of the Virginia colonists (derivative of the south west of England) softens the "tt" into "dd" and preservers the "o", hence Shaddock, instead of Shattuck or Shattock. In the past I have assumed that the spelling of names is more due to the way the name sounds in the dialect of the local area in England rather than simply a misspelling...and this proves to be true.

You also note a difference in the spelling of the surname between Somerset and Devon. The Shattocks who first migrated to Devon have their names spelled in the parish records as Shattocke or Shatticke. (The name also appears in the earliest records of West Bagborough in Somerset, suggesting its spelling was introduced to North Molton by Thomas Shattocke or Shatticke.) After 1700 the spelling becomes alternately Shaddock or Shaddick.

Record of the marriage of my ancestor Richard "Shattocke" to Agnes Strellin in 1659. But it is interesting to note that the Protestation Return in 1642 for Yarnscombe lists "Thomas Shaddock" as a resident of the village. So both versions of the name, Shattocke and Shaddock existed within decades of each other.

The Shattick Version

The earliest parish records in North Molton, Devon and West Bagborough, Somerset show "Shatticke" or "Shattick" as the spelling of the surname. "Shattick" does not seem to have survived as a variant of the Shattock name as a scientific study between 2000-2005 (Onomaps) does not have a record of that surname. However, it does survive down to the present in the form of "Shaddick."

The Shadduck Version

A version of the Shattuck name appears to be "Shadduck." DNA testing of at least one Shadduck descendant showed him to be a Shattuck descendant. The fact is the name occurs virtually exclusively in the U.S. The Onomaps study shows there were 885 people with this name variant in the U.S. and a small handful in Germany (3 or 4). That German Shadduck turned out to be a Pennsylvania Shadduck descendant.

The Chaddock Surname

The Chaddock surname is often confused with Shaddock. DNA tests show that Chaddocks are not related to Shattockes within the last five thousand years. You are probably more closely related to that descendant of west Europeans who lives next door then to the Chaddocks. The majority of Chaddocks belong to the branch of the human family called U198 which has ancient roots in England, formed long before surnames were used. People who descend from the U198 common ancestor have a variety of surnames like Norton, Lawrence, Shacklock and Chadick. U198 is a small branch of U106. Some people with the Chaddock surname belong to the FGC35559 branch of the human family, which is also descended from U106. It is interesting where the members of the U198 project find their ancestry: "We come across R-U198 quite often in men whose ancestry is English, Lowland-Scots or Ulster-Scots, Flemish, Dutch or German (particularly from the Rhine Valley)." (from In other words, U198 descendants like the Chaddocks find their ancestor across the English Channel in the areas where I suspect Shattockes are from.

The U106 branch of the human family is considered to be Nordic / German, while our branch, U152 is considered to be Italo Celtic. Italo Celtic refers to the common language spoken by Alpine Celts and northern Italians suggesting a common ancestor.) We are descended from two very different branches of the human family.

But there is evidence that makes Chaddock a derivative of a local place name. According to Philip Chaddock (one letter removed from my name) who is an administrator of the Chaddock DNA project at Family Tree DNA, the name probably derives from a medieval village, Chaddock, that once existed just west of modern day Manchester. The original spelling was Chaydok , with variants such as Chaidok, Chaydoke and Chaidoke, among others. It stabilized as Chaddock in the late 1600s. It is possible, or course, that the village was named after a Germanic, Dutch or Flemish immigrant or the place they were from in continental Europe!

An alternate origin for the Chaddocks is found in a book ("Antiquities") by Christopher Chaddock, a nineteenth century historian, that puts Chaddocks in Castle Bromwich, just a few miles from Birmingham in the midlands. (See an excerpt from the book here.) He also puts Chaddocks in Dorset, right next door to where you find Shattockes, in Somerset. These Chaddocks or Chattockes or Schattockes date back to a land record in 1241, making Chaddocks in the Birmingham area a family with a history of being landed gentry. In fact Christopher suggests the lands may have been granted to the Chaddocks by William the Conqueror. Did the Chaddocks come over with William from France?

In the middle of the 18th century the surname Shaddock begins to appear in the census records and other documents. At first I thought they were Shaddocks from Devon who had wandered north, but when we DNA tested the living descendants of Birmingham Shaddocks they turned out to not related to west Somerset Shattockes and our common ancestor Y17171. Further testing showed them to belong to a sub-branch of U198. The Shaddocks of Birmingham were Chaddocks. (See the page on the Birmingham Shaddocks.)

Another point to consider is that the variety of surnames among U198 descendants suggests that they arrived in England before surnames were adopted (after 1066 when the Normans introduced the practice). Eupedia: "U198 might be native to the Netherlands and would have been brought to England by the Anglo-Saxons from Frisia." Of course William the Conqueror employed mercenaries from the low lands.

West Somerset Shattockes belong to the U152 haplogroup and are descendants of La Tène Celts who may have originated in the Alps and a branch, the Gauls, who spread down into France and across its norther border to the Low Countries and the Rhine Valley.

The fact that Chaddocks or Chattocks are descended from a U198 ancestor tells us where they came from: the area just across from the Channel. In fact there is a possible location: Schadek Castle and its surrounding area. "Schadeck" is the German origin of the Shaddock name according to the old etymological dictionaries. And Schadek Castle is found near the Rhine Valley. It was a defensive castle. Wikipedia: "The name of the castle and its surrounding settlement came from its purpose eine Ecke zum Schaden der Burg Runkel ("a spot from which to damage Runkel Castle")." If it were the case that the Shattocke name is derived from a German place name, then the true etymology of the Shaddock name has been found. A possible scenario is descendants of the common ancestor of Shattockes and Chaddocks lived in the Schadek castle area for thousands of years, before some of them departed after the adoption of the surname and settled in the north and midlands of England and in the southwest (particularly in Somerset). That would explain why Shattockes and Chattocks DNA results do not show them as related for thousands of years. The unrelated Chaddocks and Shattockes acquired the Schadek name when surnames were first adopted in the late medieval period in Germany. But there is no empirical data to support this scenario so it has to be treated as conjecture.

There have been various attempts to link variations, like Schattock or Schaddock to our name, but DNA evidence points to an origin of Shattockes in west Somerset and the first hard evidence of the spread of the family from west Somerset is to the south (Bampton in Devon) in the early 16th century. Not until the late 16th century is there a migration west and north to London. And the Chaddocks in the midlands and north of England are descended from a completely different branch of European ancestors.


This surname is first found spelled as Shadock in early Georgia, U.S. records. Don Shaddix has been studying the surname and using DNA testing to probe deeper than possible with paper records. Don's descent from Thomas Shadock (1802 Wilkes Co GA tax list by Frank Hudson) made him think he was genetically a Shaddock. But his father's Big Y test came back showing him to be genetically unrelated to Shattockes. He belongs to the human family branch called Z198 which is a branch of the major West European branch DF27. Shattockes descend from U152, a sister branch to DF27, but the common ancestor goes back 4800 years. He is not U106 like the majority of Chaddocks that have been tested so far, but it is still possible his ancestor came from the same area and acquired the surname from the same village when surnames were adopted after 1066.

Chaddocks are said to come from a village near Manchester, England. What if there is a village in Germany that Chaddocks and Shaddocks came from and that accounts for the similarity in names? In fact, at least one etymological dictionary thought the German form of the name Shaddock was Schadeck. There is such a place in Germany. Is it possible that Shaddocks and Chaddocks were neighbors rather than descendants of a recent common ancestor?

When I looked through the STR matches of Don's father, I came across something very, very odd. His father did not match Shaddocks (or Parrishs and Byars who descend from the 1360 AD founder) at the YDNA-111, -67 or -37 level. But at the YDNA-25 level, suddenly there was a page and a half of Shattocke, Parrish and Byars matches. The fact is John's Big Y results clearly ruled him out as a descendant of the 1360 AD founder. So why do we match on those 25 STR markers? DF27 is a sister branch to the one we Shattockes, Parrishs and Byars belong to, U152. These two branches split about 4800 years ago. So that might account for the fact we share so many SNP and STR markers. For perspective, humans left Africa between 50,000 and 60,000 years ago, so our shared ancestor is relatively recent. We Shattockes are descendants of Gauls and Alpine Celts before that. We spread from central Europe west and to some extent south. The Shaddix ancestor also came out of central Europe and spread south to the Iberian peninsula. They subsequently spread north again, overlapping Gaul territory as far north as the Rhineland and Benelux. So it is possible both our family and Don's family lived side by side as late as the medieval age. Was it in the Rhine valley, in the shadow of the Schadeck castle? We might have an answer to that some day.

The Chadwick or Shadwick Surnames

There are no Shadwick projects at the FTDNA testing site. There are Chadwicks, and they appear to belong to a different branch of the human family than Shaddocks or Chaddocks: L21. Chadwicks are largely found in the north of England.

The Chadwick and Shadwick surnames have sometimes been mixed up with Shattocke variants in places like Dorset or New England. The Instow and Frithelstock branches of the family have Shadwick variations and Lemuel Shattuck mentions Shadwick as a version of Shattuck. The mix up in names occurs especially often in places like New York state where incoming immigrants in colonial times, arriving with heavy accents, often had their names recorded incorrectly. In two different cases I have examined, one Shaddock was actually a Polish immigrant and the other was a Chadwick from Lancashire.

Sadoc, Saddok and Shaddek

Although the DNA and genealogical information rules against, it is possible some day evidence of Shattocks in England before AD 1360 will turn up. In that spirit I have collected references to "Sadoc, Saddock and Shaddek" surnames in a sub-page of this one. Read it skeptically.

Captain Shaddock and The Forbidden Fruit

When was the first time you looked up "Shaddock" or "Shaddick" in the dictionary? If it was in the previous century you would have seen it was the name of a type of grapefruit whose parental seeds were brought to the West Indies by a Captain Philip Shaddock. However a couple of botany researchers published a paper in 1987 ( "Mystery of the forbidden fruit: Historical epilogue on the origin of the grapefruit, Citrus paradisi (Rutaceae) by J. Kumamoto et al.") that shows a paper trail back to the original spelling of the name, Chaddock, not Shaddock. It was also popularly known as the shattuck fruit, another variant name. The shaddock or shattuck fruit should have been called chaddock, or perhaps chaddocke or chadock, since these are other spellings of Captain Philip Chaddock's name!

See the narrative Captain Chaddocks and the Forbidden Fruit for the complete story.

As noted above, Shattockes and Chaddocks are completely different branches of the human family.

Shaddock Earlier than Shattock?

The only places where we find the double "t" version of the family name is Somerset and early New England. When Somerset Shattockes migrated south to Devon they were at first recorded as "Shattick" and later as Shaddock and Shaddick. When New England Shattucks migrated south they became Shaddocks. Some migrants to Pennsylvania who were "Shattucks" became "Shadducks." A west Somerset "Shattock" migrant to Pennsylvania became "Shaddock."A "Chattock" version of "Chaddock" is not found. In Germany, Schatock is not found, rather Schadock. It seems probable that the single or double "t" must lapse back to a single or double "d," which makes it likely the earliest form of the name was Shaddock. Perhaps this has something to do with the physical effort takes to say "Shattock" versus "Shaddock." If you say the two name versions one after the other you will notice that your tongue pushes up and forward on the double "tt," while your tongue lays back on "dd." Saying "dd" is the easier way to physically pronounce the name.

Parrishs (and Byars or Byas)

In Shaddocks, Shaddicks and Shattucks who have been Y-DNA tested, numerous individuals with the surnames "Parrish, Byers, Byars and Byas" show up as matches, meaning they are closely related to our family. By "closely" I mean in the past 600 years. They are our very distant cousins, people we are more closely related to than all the other human beings on the planet. Advanced SNP testing has shown we share a common ancestor with them who lived in the 15th century.

The YFull SNP interpretation service has assigned the Parrishs and Byars are a subclade of Y17171 called A8033. This means that Byars and Parrishs have a common ancestor who branched off of Shattockes. It is important to note that the date of formation of this subclade (about 1615) is estimated from Parrishs who have tested so far. If additional Parrishs or Byars do SNP testing that date will become more accurate.

I should make clear that only a small number of people with the surname "Byas, Byers, Byars or Parrish" are our genetic cousins. The majority of people who are not A8033 descendants but have the Parrish or Byars surnames actually come from a mixed background, meaning they come from different branches of the human family tree. In other words, other Parrish or Byars surnames arose from genetically unrelated people from different regions of England and France, who adopted the names. The Parrish and Byars descendants who are our genetic cousins have the A8033 mutation.

Genetic and genealogical evidence points to the Parrishs and Byars in our family arising from an NPE event in Virginia. Read the page I have devoted to this branch of the family.

We Shattockes are a wandering horde, from Africa to Pontic Steppes. From the Pontic Steppes to the Alps of Central Europe. From there to England and from England to her colonies throughout the world. We are sole survivors. Our surname is one of the rarest on Earth and our founder in England, Y17171, appears to be the lone survivor of a branch of the La Tène Celts whose founder lived before most of the Egyptian pyramids were built. We were merchants, land owning squires and farmers. We were warriors, fighting in almost every English and North American war since the medieval ages. We originated as tenant farmers under feudal serfdom, freed ourselves and through our skill and ingenuity rose to great wealth and distinction, and continue to be so.

The Story Continues

The next chapter of our story unfolds on the English Heritage page. Parish records, wills and other documents show that our family comes from a very small area in the English "West Country." From there the principal branches of the family emigrated to Devon, London and to the English colonies.