This very unusual and interesting name is of Old French origin, introduced into England by the Normans after the Conquest of 1066. Cryer, and its variant form Crier, is an occupational surname for a town crier, one who was employed to make public announcements in a loud voice; this was usually an appointment made by the local court of justice. The name derives from the Old French and Middle English "criere" the nominative of "crieur", crier, a derivative of the verb "crier", to cry aloud, from the Latin "Quiritate". The development of the surname has included the following examples: Robert le Crieur (1269, Northumberland), Johanna Cryour (1379, Yorkshire), and Alicia Crioure (1379, ibid). Among the recordings of the name in London is that of the marriage of John Cryer and Mary Stermore, at St. James's, Duke's Place, on November 9th 1679. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Geoffrey le Criur, which was dated 1221, in the "Hertfordshire Curia Rolls", during the reign of King Henry 111, known as "The Frenchman", 1216 - 1272. 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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