This unusual surname is of medieval German origin, and is a diminutive form of the surname "Konrad", itself coming from the Old German male given name "Conrad" or "Chonrad", a compound of the elements "kuoni, conja", bold, and "rad", counsel. This name was borne by a 10th Century saint who was Bishop of Constance, and the earliest recorded example of the personal name in England was Conrad Nye, rector of Foxley, Wiltshire, from 1436. C(h)onrad was extremely popular in Germany during the Middle Ages, being a hereditary name in several ruling families, and also widely adopted by people at all levels in society. On May 2nd 1549, Abraham, son of Thomas Cunrad, was christened in Chemnitz, Sachsen, Germany. The Low German diminutive forms of the name include: Kuhn(mann), Keunemann and Ko(h)n(e)mann, Coneman and Conman(s) being English variants. On March 6th 1688, Joergen Henrich, son of Ludolph Kohneman, was christened at Barntrup, Lippe, Germany, and on April 17th 1708, Rudolph, son of Eberhard, was christened in Minden Stadt, Westfalen. The marriage of William Conman to Mary Green took place at St. Mary's, Marylebone Road, London, on August 20th 1764. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of William Conmans, which was dated September 29th 1587, St. Andrew's, Holborn, London, 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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