Last name: Gumby
This ancient and interesting name is of pre 8th century English origin, and is probably an example of the many modern surnames that have been created from nicknames or bynames. The modern surname recorded as Gommey, Gommie, Gomby, Gumby, and Gumey, is a survival of the Olde English pre 7th Century word "guma", meaning man, plus the genitive suffix "ey" or "ie", and as such a term of endearment applied to someone employed as a friend or companion, a "right- hand man". The intrusive "b" where it occurs, may be dialectal, or could be a misspelt locational name from the village of Gunby, in Lincolnshire. Names were often given in the first instance with reference to occupation, or to a variety of characteristics, such as physical appearance, disposition, or habits of dress. Interestingly, the equivalent surname in Spanish is Gomez (and in Portugal Gomes), one of the most frequently found names in Spanish-speaking countries. The surname development includes John Gom of Cambridgeshire in 1279; and Walter Gomme of Cornwall in 1297. Later recordings from church registers include Elizabeth Gummy, christened at St Dunstans, Stepney, on January 1st 1580, William Gumby, Sarah Gomey, christened at St Sepulchre church, City of London, on February 29th 1675, and John Gumby, a witness at St Katherine Creechurch, London, on June 17th 1712. first recorded spelling of the family name is believed to be that of Simon Gumme, which was dated 1247, a witness in the "Assize Court of Bedford", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272.
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