This rare and interesting name is of Medieval English origin and is from a female given name "Emeny", or "Emonie", found in either of these forms until the 18th Century, whereupon it was also recorded as "Ismaine" and "Ismenia". The derivation is from the Old German compound name "Ismagin", meaning iron-strength. In the Pipe Rolls of Rutland in 1199 is a recording of Ismeine de Cherchefeld, the earliest instance of this given name, also recorded subsequently as "Ismenia", "Ismeina" and "Hismena" (1206-1212, Curia Rolls of Suffolk and Nottingham). The following examples illustrate the name development after 1276 (see below), John Ymanie (1279), Roger Emaygne (1352), Nicholas Eman (1524) and William Immings (1658). In St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Westminster, on July 25th 1761, is recorded the marriage of Stephen Emeney and Elizabeth Wilson. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Hugh Imayn, which was dated 1276, in the "Hundred Rolls of Leicester", 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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