Effect of French Emigrants on English Life

The Sydney Morning Herald

28 April 1934

The stimulus to British industry and cultural life, following the emigration of Huguenots caused by religious persecution in France, was dealt with by Mr. W. A. W. de Beuzeville at a meeting of the Society of Australian Genealogists, held at the Education Building last night.

"How many people named Wild, Savage, Prettyman, Cross, or Weir know that they first received their family name after the emigration, when Frenchmen anglicised their names from French equivalents," said Mr. de Beuzeville He said that the extent of the emigration could hardly be gauged. The number of exiles was estimated at 400,000, a colossal number considering the relatively small population of Europe at the close of the 17th century. French residents in London alone founded 4 churches.

Mr. de Beuzeville said that one result of the emigration was an economic setback for France which lasted for scores of years and a corresponding increase in the skill and efficiency of Industries in Great Britain, where most of the exiles sought refuge.