The one thing that we can say about this surname with reasonable certainty is that it is probably medieval French. If so it is a development of de Poir(e) or du Poir(e), Poiret, Poireau, Poirier, and others, surnames recorded in England from about the mid 17th century at the height of what is known as the Huguenot Period. The Huguenots were (mainly) French protestants, who from about 1580 to 1730 were continually under religious persecution by the various kings of France. As to why a religion different from ones own, arouses such passion amongst fundamentalists everywhere, is one of the great human mysteries. It is also one that is no nearer to being solved now than it was four hundred years ago when this name first entered the British Isles, or eight hundred years ago in the time of the famous Crusades. This surname however spelt means " Pear", which may refer to a place or places called Pore or Poire and hence be locational. However the "Dictionnaire de Noms de France" suggests that the name either describes a fruit merchant or the owner of a fruit orchard specialising in pears. When a nameholder arrived in England, he may not have been able to spell his own name, as only ten percent of people could, and hence the spelling was given an English spin. This was not all bad, as to be French in England at that time was not always to be greeted enthusiastically. Recorded in the London Registers as Depir, Depor, Depoir, Depur, Depper, Deppur and probably others, the earliest recording may be that of Samuel Depper at St Giles Cripplegate in the city of London in 1668. The actual day is not known.
© Copyright: Name Origin Research 1980 - 2017