Saxton This very interesting name recorded as Saxton, Sexton, Sexen,and Saxon, is generally English, but sometimes is Irish. It has at least three possible origins. The first and most likely is locational from one of the villages called Saxton, found in Yorkshire, Cambridge, and Surrey. Saxton in the West Riding of Yorkshire was the site of the battle of Towton, during the famous Wars of the Roses from 1422 to 1485. In all cases the village name and hence the surname translates as "the settlement (tun) of the Saxons". An example from this source of the early recordings is that of Johannes de Saxton, in the 1379 Poll Tax rolls for the city of York. The second possibility is that for some nameholders at least, their ancestors held the position of sexton or church warden. This derives from the Middle English "sexteyn", a derivative of the Old French "secrestein", introduced by the Normas after the 1066 invasion. An early recording from that source is that of William Sextain, in the Subsidy Rolls for the county of Sussex in 1327. The third possible origin is the anglicized form of the Gaelic Irish "O'Seastnain", meaning the "descendant of Seastnan", a personal name meaning "bodyguard" from "seasuighim", to defend. In the spelling of Sexton the name is mainly found in Limerick city where no less than eight Sextons have been mayors, although several were of English protestant origin. The first recording of the surname is shown to be that of Tomas Sekerstein, which was dated 1203, in the "Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
Wren This unusual name is of Anglo-Saxon origin and is one of a large group of early English surnames created from nicknames, often from the names of birds and animals, after some supposed resemblance to their best-known characteristics, such as Lark, Nightingale, Jay, Hart, Lamb and so on. The nickname "Wren", derived from the Olde English pre 7th Century word "wrenna" or "wraenna", in Middle English "wrenne", was probably used of a small, busy and quick-moving person. The modern surname has two forms, Wren and Wrenn, the latter being the most usual spelling until the end of the 17th Century. Church recordings include one Rychard Wren who married Agnis Dalton on September 12th 1561 at St. Mary Abchurch, London, and Thomas Wren was christened on December 30th 1578 at St. John's, Hackney. The most notable namebearer is probably Sir Christopher Wren (1632 - 1723), the brilliant English architect who designed St. Paul's Cathedral and over fifty other London churches after the Great Fire of 1666, as well as many secular buildings. A Coat of Arms granted to a Wren family of County Durham depicts, on a white shield, on a black chevron between three lion's heads erased purple as many wrens of the field, on a chief, red, three crosses crosslet, gold. The Crest is a lion's head erased silver collared and pierced through the neck with a broken spear, red headed gold, vulned proper. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Wrenne, which was dated 1275, in the "Hundred Rolls of Norfolk", during the reign of King Edward 1st, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
Bunning This is an Olde German nickname from the medieval period (12-14th century) and means 'a good man' or 'a pleasant man'. There are various spellings including Bunin, Buning and Bunning, the name(s) being recorded heraldically in both Pomerania (Bunning) and the Netherlands (Buning). The Coat of Arms of Bunning being a blue mascle (the sign of honesty) on a silver field, silver being the sign of sincerity. In all spellings the name is also recorded in America in the New Dictionary of Surnames, whilst the area formerly Pomerania, is part of East Germany. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Johannes Bunning (of Prussia) which was dated C. 1680 Stetin, Pomerania during the reign of Emperor Leopold I The Holy Roman Empire 1668 - 1705. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was known as Poll Tax. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop" often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.