This interesting surname is of English locational origin from one of the estimated seven to ten thousand lost villages and hamlets that have disappeared from maps in Britain. The prime cause of these "disappearances" was the enforced "clearing" and dispersal of the former inhabitants to make way for sheep pastures at the height of the wool trade in the 14th Century. Natural causes such as the Black Death of 1348 also contributed to the lost village phenomenon. The original place name was probably composed of the Old English pre 7th Century elements "briosa", meaning "gadfly", plus the second element "-by", from the Old Norse "byr", "boer" or the Old Danish, Old Swedish "by", a common placename element in parts of England colonized by Scandinavians, meaning a village or homestead. One Rachell Brasbie, daughter of Thomas Brasbie was christened at St. Margarets, Westminster, London in January 1599, while Tobias and Thomas, son of John Brasbie were christened in October 1621, and April 22nd 1632 at St. Margarets, respectively. Ann Braisby was christened at St. Margarets, on September 24th 1651. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Brasebie married Elliu Luke, which was dated October 1st 1598, at St. Margarets, Westminster, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, "Good Queen Bess", 1558 - 1603. 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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