Recorded as Brade, Brader, Bradder, Broader, and possibly others, this is an English name. It several possible origins. It may be a nickname from the pre 7th Century word "brad", meaning broad or wide, and given to someone considered to be broad or stout. Secondly it could be a patromymic from the pre 7th century personal name Brada, which also means broad or wide. Thirdly it could be residential or occupational from living or working at a broad, a wide river or lake. as in the modern description of the Norfolk Broads. Lastly it could again be occupational and describe a braid maker, as in the recording of Robert le Bredere of Norfolk in 1286, and William Brader of Yorkshire, in the Friary Rolls of 1382. Gilbert le Brode is recorded in the tax records known as the Feet of Fines of 1235, whilst and Jeames Broad, was christened at St. Martin Vintry, city of London, on December 19th 1631. A coat of arms associated with the surname has the blazon of a silver shield, charged with a black pale between three lozenges counterchanged. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John le Brade. This was dated 1212, in the Curia Regis rolls of the county of Kent, during the reign of King John, 1199 - 1216. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes 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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