This interesting and unusual name is of early medieval English origin, and is a metronymic surname derived from the rare medieval female given name "Eve", the name of the first bearer's mother. Metronymics are very uncommon as a group of surnames, since most of European society was patriarchal and hereditary names descended through the father. The name "Eve" derives from the Hebrew "Chava", originally meaning "serpent", or perhaps akin to the verb "chaya", to live, and was the name of the first woman, according to the Book of Genesis. In some few cases, the modern surname may derive from a nickname acquired by a man playing the part of Eve in a medieval pageant depicting the Creation. The Latin form of the personal name, "Eva" is recorded in London in 1206. The surname is first recorded in the 13th Century (see below), and can also be found as Eves, Eaves, Eveson, Evison and Evason. Hugh Eveson is noted in the Court Rolls of the Borough of Colchester (1373). Recordings of the surname from London Church Registers include: the christening of Anthonye, son of William Everson, on July 25th 1580, at St. Botolph without Aldgate; the marriage of Sara Everson and David Routon on January 31st 1590 at St. Katherine by the Tower; and the marriage of Edward Everson and Sara Lighter on March 22nd 1658 at St. Dunstan's, Stepney. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Evessone, which was dated circa 1200, in the "Chartulary of the Monastery of Ramsey", Cambridgeshire, during the reign of King John, known as "Lackland", 1199 - 1216. 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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