This interesting surname has two possible origins. Firstly, it may derive from the Old English pre 7th Century personal name Aedelwig, a compound of the elements "oedel" meaning noble plus "wig" a battle. The given names Ailwi and Aluui appear in the Domesday Book of 1086. One Willelmus Filius Ailwi, is recorded in the Pipe Rolls of Northamptonshire (1206). The surname may also be of Scottish locational origin from any one of the following places; Alloway in Ayshire, Alloa in Clackmannanshire and Alva in Stirlingshire.They are all named from the Gaelic "allmhagh" meaning a rocky plain. The surname is first recorded in the latter half of the 12th Century (see below). One Roger Alewy, appears in the Pipe Rolls of Middlesex (1200). In the modern idiom the surname has numerous spelling variations including Allaway, Alleway, Alaway, Alway, Elloway, Halloway etc.. On June 10th 1588, Jhon Alway married Jone King, at St. Bride's, Fleet Street, and Alice Alway married Richard Blackwell, on October 16th 1603, at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Godfrey Ailwi, Suffolk, which was dated 1188, in the "Kalendar of Abbot Samson of Bury St. Edmunds", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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.
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