This interesting and unusual name is of Medieval English origin and is a variant of Corham a locational name from a so called 'lost' village, likely to have once been situated in Devon, which is suggested by the fact that the recordings are numerous in that county. Coram is a derivation of the Old English pre 7th century 'corn', corn (the grain) and 'hamm', a low lying meadow. The phenomenon of the 'lost' village was generally a result of enforced land clearance, to make way for sheep pasture in the 12th and 13th Centuries, as well as more natural causes, such as plague, war, etc., and it is estimated that there are between seven and ten thousand such villages that have disappeared from British maps. Amongst the recordings in London and Devon are the christenings of Walter Coram at St. Martin's, Ludgate, London on January 5th 1586, and of James Coram on October 21st 1587 at Clayhanger, Devon. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Emelyn Coram, marriage to Thomas Jesse, which was dated October 17th 1546, at St. Mary Arches, Exeter, Devon, during the reign of King Henry V111, 'Good King Hal', 1509-1547. 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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