This locational surname derives originally either from the town of Ashborne in Derbyshire, or from the Ashburn river in Sussex. Both have exactly the same meaning as shown below, but it is accepted that almost all name holders do derive from the Derbyshire source. Eitherway the name has undergone a number of changes in its long history. The first surname recordings as shown below are in the spelling of 'Esseburne'. This in fact was the near correct form, the derivation being from the pre 7th century Olde English 'aesc' (the ash trees) plus 'burna' a stream or brook, the stream where the ash trees grew. The 1086 Domesday Book records 'Esseburn' in Derbyshire, but not until 1577 is there a clear recording of the Sussex river and then as 'Asheburne'. Early recordings of the surname include Henry de Essebourne of Derby in the Hundred Rolls of the county in 1273, and Thomas de Assheburne also of Derby in the 1293 Curis Regis rolls of King Edward 1. Later recordings are those of Thomas de Asheborne, rector of Colveston, Norfolk, in 1351, whilst in 1625 Thomas Ashborne of Nottingham obtained a marriage licence in London. The John Ashburn who married Catherine James at St Georges Chapel, Hanover Square, London, in 1771, may have been one of his descendants. The coat of arms has the blazon of a silver field, on a fess between three red crescents, three mullets (knights spurs) of the field. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Robert de Esseburne, which was dated 1273, the hundred rolls of Derbyshire, during the reign of King Edward 1, 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.
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