This interesting surname of French origin is a locational name from any of several places so called, deriving from the Gaulish element "briga" meaning "height", "hill" or "berria", "plain" plus the suffix "on". The surname dates back to the mid 17th Century, (see below). Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Brion, was christened on September 23rd 1663, at St. Mary Whitechapel, Stepney. Ann, daughter of Samuel and Mary Brion, was christened on September 11th 1670 at St. Mary Whitechapel, Stepney, and Elizabeth, daughter of Edward and Frances Bryon, was christened on September 6th 1711, at St. Dunstan, Stepney. One John Brion (28), together with his wife Ann (23), and their children Mary (4) and Francis (1), were famine emigrants who sailed from Marseilles aboard the Affghan on July 20th 1846, bound for New York. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alces Bryon, christened, which was dated 1658, St. Ann Blackfriars, London, during the reign of Commonwealth, 1649 - 1660. 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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