Recorded in many spellings including Bergen, Beregan, Berrigan, Berrygun, Bergin, Birgin, Burgoin, Burgoyne, Burgan, Burgen, Burgin, Burgwin, Burgwyn, Burgyn, and others, this is a surname of Dutch, French or Norwegian origins, and locational. It is usually from Burgandy, and describes a person from that French region, but occassionally it may be from places called Bergen in both the Netherlands and Norway. It is possible that in all cases the derivation could be from a Gaulish tribe called the Burgundii, who invaded much of Northern Europe and even as far south as Spain in the 5th century a.d. In the British Isles, the first region in the world to truly adopt hereditary surnames, it is recorded in the famous Domesday Book of England in 1086, when Walter Burgoin was granted lands in the county of Devonshire. In Scotland the earliest recorded namebearer was Robert Burgonensis, who according to the ancient rolls known as the "Cartarum prioratus Sancti Andrew", was in 1128, accused of rapacity by the monks of St. Serf's island, Loch Leven! Less contentiously Adam de Burgoine appears in the Subsidy Tax register of the city of London in 1319, Cornelius Berregone, was a christening witness at Endell Street, Holborn, on August 12th 1784 whilst the exotically named John Berrygun, is recorded at St George in the East, Stepney, on January 4th 1835. General John Burgoyne, who was both an author and soldier, capitulated to George Washington at the battle of Saratoga in 1777. This action was to lead to the final American victory and independance. Throughout the centuries, surnames in every country have continued to "develop", often leading to astonishing variants of the original spelling.
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