This interesting surname with variant spellings, Bravington, Breavington, Braventon, etc., is of English locational origin from one of the estimated seven to ten thousand villages and hamlets that have now disappeared from the 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 placename bravington is composed of the Old English pre 7th Century personal name "Braw" plus "ing" meaning "people of" plus "tun" "farm or settlement". The surname dates back to the mid 18th Century, (see below). Church recordings include one Thomas Braventon who married Diana White on May 7th 1764, at St. Luke's, Old Street, Finsbury, Catherine Mary Breavington was christened on August 4th 1822 at St. Mary Magdalene, Bermondsey, and Mary Bravington married Joseph Soal on February 15th 1827 at St. Mary's, Putney, London. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of James Bravington witnessed the christening of his daughter Mary, which was dated 1750, St. Botolph's, Bishopsgate, London, during the reign of King George 11, "The Last Warrior King", 1727 - 1760. 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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