This interesting surname, of Anglo-Saxon origin, is either a topographical name for someone who lived by a grove, or a locational name from any of the numerous places called Barrow in Cheshire, Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Shropshire, Suffolk and Somerset, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "bearo, bearu", meaning "grove" or "wood". It may also be a topographical name for someone who lived by a hill or burial mound, or a locational name from either of the places called Barrow near Leicestershire and Somerset, deriving from the Olde English pre 7th Century "beorg", meaning "hill" or "barrow". Finally, it may be a locational name from Barrow in Furness, Cumberland, which derives from the Celtic "barro", meaning "promontory". The surname dates back to the late 12th Century (see below). Thomas Barrowe married Elizabeth Letter on May 25th 1554, at St. Mary Magdalene, Bermondsey, London, and Nicholas Barrow was christened at St. Margaret's, Westminster, also in London in October 1565. Anne Barrow, aged 21 yrs., a famine emigrant, sailed from Liverpool aboard the "W. Ward", bound for New York in May 1847. the Coat of arms most associated with the family is described thus: "Argent (silver) three torteaux, each charged with a fleur-de-lis or (gold), on a chief azure (blue) a buglehorn gold between two pheons of the field". The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Adam de Barewe, which was dated 1192, in the "Pipe Rolls of Lincolnshire", during the reign of King Richard 1, known as "The Lionheart", 1189 - 1199. 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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