This interesting and unusual surname, recorded in London church registers from the early 17th Century under the variant spellings Dufaur, Dufoure, Dufore, Dufaire, Duffer, Du Foir, Du Four etc., is of French topographical origin from residence near a market square. The derivation is from the old French "foire", market or fair, fused with the preposition and definite article "du". The surname was introduced into England by French refugees fleeing religious persecutions in their own country during the 16th and 17th Centuries. On February 10th 1692 Anne Suzanne, daughter of Abraham Dufour and Suzanne Hanriet was christened in Le Temple French Huguenot Church, London and on February 23rd 1696 Isaac, son of Jacob Dufour and Marie Descourtieux, was christened in St. Jean French Huguenot, Spitalfields. A Coat of Arms granted to the Dufour family of France consists of a blue shield, with a gold Chevron between three silver knights' spurs, and a black crescent on a gold chief, the latter signifying dominion. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Jaque De Four, (christening), which was dated March 13th 1614, in the "French Huguenot Church, Threadneedle Street, London", during the reign of King James 1 of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625. 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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