This unusual name is of early medieval English origin, and a locational surname deriving from either of two places in Cumberland called Allonby and Ellonby. The former is recorded in the 1274 Close Rolls of the county as "Aleynby", while Ellonby appears in the Cumberland Charter Rolls of 1267 as "Alemby". Both placenames are comparatively late formations (post Norman Conquest of 1066), and both share the same meaning and derivation, which is "Alein's settlement", from the male personal name "Alein", derived from the Anglo-Norman French "aguillon", goad, spur, with the Northern Middle English "by", farm, settlement, a development of the Old Norse "byr".One John Alomby was listed in the Register of the Freemen of the City of York in 1522, and Francis and Thomas Alanbye of Cumberland are both recorded in the Oxford University Register of 1581. The modern surname forms are Allanby, Allenby, Allonby, Allamby, and Allemby. The marriage was recorded in Cumberland of Robert Allonby and Catheren Borradell on May 28th 1589, at Holme Cultram. The Coat of Arms most associated with the family, and granted in the 14th Century, is a blue chevron on a silver shield within a blue bordure. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam de Aleynby, which was dated 1332, in the "Subsidy Rolls of Cumberland", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. 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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