Norwich to London
Family legend has it that the Molletts are descended from Huguenots, but as you can see from the line of descent at left, that legend has virtually been disproved, though not quite - maybe Thomas Mollet came from France, or maybe it was one of the wives.
The list of ancestors at the top of the page, owes much to Margaret Cran who kindly shared her research. I have checked and confirmed as far back as the first Robert and can be pretty sure of the line until there. I am continuing to work on those who are further back, so it could all change!
Until around 1800 the Molletts were based in Norwich in various of the very many parishes there. Around that time one of the Roberts left the city for the big smoke of London (the younger one I think). And he definitely lived all of his adult life there, although he was born in Norwich.
In Norwich the Molletts were associated mostly with Norwich’s major industry - textiles, but there was at least one baker in the mix too. The second Robert was a pastrycook, but his children and their descendants became financiers and accountants, rising to prosperity and then falling again.
The current descendants of this line are split between Sussex, Hertfordshire and Melbourne, Australia with the only male bearers of the name now in France and London.
Thomas Mollet (c 1550)
Thomas Mollet (c1610/11)
Thomas Mollet (c1635)
John Mollet (c1671)
John Mollet (c1693)
William Mollet (c1718)
Robert Mollett (c1746)
Robert Mollett (1782-1866)
A diminutive of Moll, which is in itself a diminutive of Mary, usually meaning ‘wished for child’ or ‘rebellion’. Moll is also another name for prostitute of course. I think I also read elsewhere that it can be derived from the french mal - meaning bad or ugly. Either way, not a particularly endearing origin.
Mollett, Mallett, Millett, Mollet, Mallet, Mollitt
In 1891 the Molletts were very definitely centred on Yorkshire, with the next two largest contingents in Norfolk and London. So far I have found no connection with Yorkshire in our family tree.