This interesting and unusual name is of English origin and is a dialectal variant of a locational name Kempsey, from a place so called in Worcestershire, which is suggested by the fact that this variant can be found on record in the neighbouring counties. The earliest recording of Kempsey is in the Saxon Charters of 799 as 'Kemesei', in 977 as 'Cymesig' and in the Domesday Book of 1086 as 'Chemesege'. The derivation is from an Old English personal name 'Cymi', with the Old Norse 'ey', an island, thus Cymi's Island. During the Middle Ages it became common for people to migrate from their place of birth to seek work elsewhere, and they would often adopt the village name as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. One William Capsey, the infant son of Adam and Mary Capsey was christened on April 7th 1749 at Ludlow. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Capsey (marriage to Ann Jackson), which was dated June 16th 1739, St. Julia's, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, 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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