In Medieval times the family had come to Ireland. At the beginning of May 1169, three single-masted longships beached at Bannow Bay, County Wexford. They had sailed from Milfordhaven in Wales, and on board were Normans, Welshmen and Flemings.
David L’enfant testified before the Inquisition on 11 November 1181 as a citizen of Limerick. He is possibly the first I have found.We find the family in the mid to late 1200s in Ireland in a variety of places and tasks.
Richard L’enfant before Michaelmas in 1284 “prest by order of the justiciary”,or paid, possibly by Walter L’enfant who was a Justice Itinerant. Richard again is in records at Kylmallock in Sept 1295 when what he is to pay to the Abbott of Kyllmalog ( Kilmallock),Abbott de Magio a Crannoc , 8 acres of crops is partially seized for something he owes the King.. the 23rd year of Edward I. Richard is a farmer of sorts and grew oats, beans, wheat, barley and corn. I say of sorts because he is allowed by the Abbott to whatever he can farm but he apparently only farmed the 8 acres he owed the Abbott.
John Lenfant son of Thomas were also present at Michaelmas 1284 but their goods were not in the County of Limerick.
Simon Lenfant was in court records in Limerick August 1295.
In 1295-6 John Boyn was seneschal of Walter L’enfant when he was outlawed in error in Omurthy ( Athy?) He pledged 5 marks and Peter le Petit and John Lenfant was his surety.
In April 28 of 1297 in the 27th year of William I reign. Walter son of Walter L’enfant owed in Kildare to the Seneschal of the liberty of Kildare 60 acres of wheat and 60 acres of oats and 6 oxen and 4 afers ( heifers). One of these Walters probably the older had his property in Limerick as well as Thomas son of Walter .
1297 Gilbert Lenffaunt and wife Cristina broke the house of Hugh de Vilers and stole a sheep and a lamb and they are thieves of geese and hens. Outlawed also in 1297 and later pardoned was Walter Lenfant, Miller of “ le Boley” ( Galballey Limerick).
April 14 1297 in Kildare John L’enfaunt Sr. in 1295 at the robbery of Town of Kildare says he was in company of John son of Thomas Lenfant and “puts himself on the country”. Not Guilty was the verdict
Mich. De Weston took 5 cows of the son in law in the town of Moon Colmekille at the direction of his Lord Walter Lenfant of Moonkolmek. Puts himself on the Country. He wsa fined 1.2 a mark as it was a time of “Disturbance” and pledge given by John L’enfant and John de la Hyde