Cecilia d'Atis, SM/PROG

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Cecilia d'Atis, SM/PROG's Geni Profile

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Cecilia d'Atis, SM/PROG

Also Known As: "Cecilia du Preez", "Cecilia Dati", "Sisijllia de Pres", "Sijsillia de Pre", "Cecilia Datijs"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Courtrai, Flandre, France
Death: Died in Paarl, Caap de Goede Hoop, Suid Afrika
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Adam D'Athis, Dathe and Cathalina D'Athis
Wife of Hercule des Prez; Hercules des Prez, SV/PROG and Pierre Dumont
Mother of Philippe des Prez; Elisabeth des Prez, b1 SM; Hercule des Prez, b2; Marie-Jeanne des Prez, b4 SM; François-Jean des Prez, b4 and 3 others
Sister of Nicolas D'Aties

Occupation: Huguenot settler, Miller
Managed by: Dennis Anthony Burger
Last Updated:

About Cecilia d'Atis, SM/PROG

Des Prez in Boucher

North-west of Ath is Courtrai in Flanders, a town on the Lys associated with the Des Prez family which reached the Cape on the Schelde in 1688. Courtrai was held by the French between 1668 and 1678. ..The Des Prez party consisted of Hercule des Prez, born about the year 1645, his wife Cecile (Cecilia) Datis, some five years his junior, and six children: Hercule, Elisabeth, Jacquemine (Jacomina), Marie-Jeanne, Philippe and Francois-Jean. The place of origin of the Des Prez family is uncertain, but Athis southwest of Mons may provide a clue to the earliest beginnings of the Datis family. Later generations would certainly not have remained confined to the village from which they presumably took their name and it is interesting to find in the church registers of Oostburg in the United Provinces a reference in 1748 to the marriage there of a Marie-Catherine Dathee (sic) from the Saint-Quentin generality of Picardy.

It is, however, certain that the Des Prez family was living in the Courtrai district when the town was a French possession. The daughter Elisabeth was baptized in the Sint-Maartens church there on August 31, 1670, with Charles Loridon and Ludovica (Louise) Pittens as godparents. In the same church on July 4, 1677 Francois-Jean was christened, taking the name of his godfather Francois Loridon. The godmother on that occasion was Jeanne, or Johanna van Neste, of a family well represented in the local church registers. It is probable that, as with other French-speaking settlers from Flanders, the Des Prez party was at home in the Flemish language.

The family must also have lived at some time in Bethune in the province of Artois, since it is known that Marie-Jeanne des Prez was born there. If the date of her birth, 1675, is correct, this would indicate a temporary move there from Courtrai. It is possible that Philippe des Prez was also born in Bethune, as he gave the name Artois to his farm in the Land van Waveren. On the other hand, this could be taken to indicate that the Des Prez family had its origins in that province. It is also evident that Hercule des Prez and his wife were once resident in Lille, where Jacquemine was born. Graham Botha gives Courtrai as the birthplace of both Hercule des Prez and his son of the same name, but no confirmation of this has been discovered.

Hercule des Prez and his family were at Flushing in Zeeland by 1686, together with his wife’s brother Nicolas Datis. On August 29 of that year the two men applied to the municipal authorities to join the Sint- Jans guild of tailors without payment of the usual charges. The request points to the necessity of guild membership for obtaining remunerative employment as an artisan, as well as to the financial difficulties in which so many refugee families found themselves. It also provides evidence of the trade followed by the Cape settler, an occupation in keeping with his background in the textile centres of the north-east. The Flushing authorities were prepared to accept the applicants as paying members and to admit them to citizenship when they had taken the required oath.

The refuge in Flushing enabled Hercule des Prez and his wife to practise openly the Calvinist faith and on February 11, 1688, eight days before they sailed with their children on the Schelde, they were given an attestation of membership by the minister and elders of the Walloon church in Flushing. They had, in the words of the document, “fait ouverte profession de la Religion Reformee, et vescu avec edification au milieu de nous, frequentant les sainctes assemblies et participant au Sacrement de la saincte Cene du Seigneur”. The attestation was signed by the pastor Andre Lombard and, in the name of his colleagues, by the church elder Daniel de Groot.

… The voyage to the Cape on the Schelde brought the Des Prez and Prevost families close. Elisabeth des Prez stood godmother at the shipboard baptism of Jacob Prevost, with the ship’s captain as godfather; Philippe des Prez was later to marry Charles Prevost’s daughter Elisabeth.

  • Boucher.M (1981). French speakers at the Cape: The European Background. Pretoria, UNISA. CHAPTER NINE Cape settlers V: from Flanders to Alsace on the turbulent frontier pp269-271

Pierre [Robert], an agriculturist at Drakenstein, in 1700 married Cecilia D'Atis, widow of Hercules des Pres, Sr. She died 15th November, 1720, and was then living on the farm "Soetendal" in Drakenstein.


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Cecilia d'Atis, SM/PROG's Timeline

1650
1650
Courtrai, Flandre, France
1670
August 31, 1670
Age 20
Courtrai, Flandre, Belgium
1672
1672
Age 22
Flandre, Belgium
1675
1675
Age 25
Béthune, Artois, France
1677
July 4, 1677
Age 27
Courtrai, Flandre, Belgium
1679
1679
Age 29
Lille, Flandre, France
1680
1680
Age 30
France
1681
1681
Age 31
Aisne, Hauts-de-France, France
1681
Age 31
Artois, France