This interesting surname with variant spellings Beaver, Beever, Beevor, Bevar, Bever, Bevir, Biever, etc., is a Norman locational name from any of the several places in France called Beauvoir, for example Beauvoir, for example in Manche, Somme, and Seine-Maritime, or from Belvoir in Leicestershire. All of these get their names from the Old French "beu, bel" meaning "fair, lovely" plus "veir, voir" meaning "to see", hence "a place with a fine view". It may also be a nickname referring to a hard worker, or for someone with a fancied resemblance to the animal, deriving from the Middle English "bevere" Old English pre 7th Century "beofor" meaning "beaver".The surname dates back to the late 11th Century, (see below). Further recordings include one Ralph de Belueeir (1170) "The Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire", and John de Baauveir (1204) "The Assize Court Rolls of Yorkshire". Church recordings include Ann Beevor who was christened on January 22nd 1562 at St. Dunstan in the East, London, John Beaver was christened on April 2nd 1620 at St. Dunstan's, Stepney, and Elizabeth Beaver was christened on May 28th 1637 at St. Giles, Cripplegate, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Godwyn Beure, which was dated 1084, in the Early London Personal Names, during the reign of King William 1, known as "The Conqueror", 1066 - 1087. 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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