Recorded as Grant, Grand, Le Grand, and Legrand, this is an Anglo-Scottish, Belgian and French surname. It has two possible origins. The first is early French, and introduced into the British Isles at the time of the famous Norman Conquest of 1066. As such it was a nickname derived from the word "graunt", meaning tall or perhaps large, and ultimately from the Latin "grandis". In medieval times it enjoyed much the same family status as in the modern senior or junior, and was used to distinguish between people of the same family name, but of different generations. A second origination is pre 7th century Old English. It derives from the personal name "Granta", found in such place names as Grantham and Grantley, from a pre Roman word which meant slow river. The surname was first introduced into Scotland in the year 1258, when Robertus Grant who had formerly held estates in England, was a witness to a charter in Inverness. As Sir Robert Grant he was the sherriff of Inverness in 1266, and effectively founder of the Scottish clan dynasty. Other examples of the name recording include: Gilbert Grant in the Eynsham Cartulary for the city of Oxford in the year 1183, William Le Grand of Norfolk in 1204, and in the Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire, William le Grant in 1219. One of the most notable bearers of the name was Ulysses S. Grant (1822 - 1885), the eighteenth president of the United States, from 1869 - 1877, and commander in chief of Union forces in the American Civil War (1864 - 1865). The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugo Grandis. This was dated 1084, in the "Geld Roll of Warwickshire" during the reign of King William 1st of England, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087.
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