This interesting and unusual surname is of Anglo-Saxon origin, and is a locational name from Clewer, in either Berkshire or Somerset. Clewer in Berkshire is recorded as "Clivore" in the Domesday Book of 1086, and as "Cliuewara" in the 1156 Pipe Rolls of the county, and Clewer in Somerset was recorded as "Cliveware" in the Domesday Book, and as "Clywar" in the 1276 Hundred Rolls. Both placenames share the same meaning and derivation, which is the Olde English pre 7th Century tribal name "Clifware", composed of the elements "clif", cliff, slope, and "ware", inhabitants; hence, "dwellers on the slope". During the Middle Ages, when migration for the purpose of job-seeking was becoming more common, people often took their former village name as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. In the modern idiom the name can be found as Clewer and Cluer. Recordings of the surname from English Church Registers include: the christening of John, son of James Clewer, on October 5th 1620, at St. Olave's, Silverstreet, London; the christening of Edward Cluer on August 18th 1624, at All Hallows the Less, London; and the christening of Anne, daughter of Richard Cluer, on April 25th 1675, at Stoughton, Sussex. The Coat of Arms granted to the family depicts a black covered standing cup on a silver shield. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Margaret Clewer, which was dated May 9th 1563, marriage to Henricus Hattersley, at Sheffield, Yorkshire, 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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