Last name: Flemming

An unusual Old French name, first introduced into England after the Norman Conquest of 1066, 'Flamanc' and meaning 'The Fleming' or a 'Man from Flanders'. Flanders was the continental textile manufacturing centre, and in order to 'encourage' English industry, the export of wool to the continent was banned and many 'Flemings' emigrated to England and set up cloth manufacturing, particularly in East Anglia and Yorkshire. Probably the most famous namebearer listed in the national Biography is alexander Fleming (1824 - 1875) a medicar writer whose "Physiological and Medicinal Properties of Aconitum Napellus" (1845) led to the introduction of Fleming's tincture. Another interesting namebearer was a child prodigy who sadly died very young, one Margaret Fleming (1803 - 1811) known as "Pet Marjoie" who played with Sir Walter Scott and composed a poem on Mary Queen of Scots, and other verses. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Le Flamanc, which was dated 1219, The Yorkshire Assizes, during the reign of King Henry 111, 'The Frenchman', 1216 - 1272. 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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