This most interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a short form of the locational name which derives from either Brimblecombe, thought to be a lost village in Devon, or Brimcombe, a locality in Berkshire, or Brimscombe, near Stroud in Gloucestershire. Villages were lost as a result of 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. All of the above placenames were composed of the Olde English pre 7th Century elements "bremel", bramble, and "cumb", a narrow valley. The placename was recorded in Devonshire as "Brumelcome" in 1281 and as "Bremycomb" in 1330. 'Short' forms developed because of a combination of dialect, poor spelling and simple laziness, it being much easier to say 'Brimble' than 'Brimblecomb' and certainly a lot easier to spell, examples of the 'short' form include Geoffrey Brimble, the son of Godfrey and Mary Brimble, christened at the church of St Andrews Undershaft, London, on July 11th 1651, during the reign of Oliver Cromwell, and William John Brimble, christened at St Botolphs without Aldgate, London, on Christmas day, 1801. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Jane Bremell, which was dated August 8th 1582, christened at St Dunstans Church, Stepney, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1, known as '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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