SDB Popularity Ranking: 4044

Last name: Driver

SDB Popularity ranking: 4044

This surname is of German, Anglo-Saxon, and French origins. It derives from an ancient word 'driffan', through the later French 'drevere' and as a surname in the spellings of Driver, Drever, Dryver, and Dreverman, it is an occupational surname for a transport contractor, a driver of horse or oxen teams. The original descriptive word may have been introduced into Britain in the 8th century, but if so is not recorded as such, and it seems that the modern surnames, at least in England, owe their presence to the Norman French invasion of England in 1066. The early recordings examples include Gilbert le Drivere in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk for the year 1283, and John le Drivere in the Parliamentary Writs of the year 1300. In Germany Hermen Drevere is recorded in the 1493 charters of the city of Hannover. Other recording examples taken from the church registers include Georg Dryver, who married Johan Jones on July 29th 1550, at St. Leonard's Eastcheap, London, whilst John Driver married Alice Edwardes on June 16th 1563 at St. James church, Clerkenwell, London. James Driver, was one of the earliest settlers to the New American colonies. He sailed from London aboard the 'Alexander' bound for the Barbados, on May 2nd 1635. John Drever married Sarah Belcher at St Botolphs Bishopgate, London, on December 19th 1720, whilst Johann Wilhelm Drever married Ann Margarett Zurhofen at Amelsburen, Westfalen, Germany, on April 28th 1772. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Alice le Driveres, which was dated 1279, in the "The Hundred Rolls of Cambridgeshire", during the reign of King Edward 1, known as "The Hammer of the Scots", 1272 - 1307. 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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