This name derives from the Olde English pre 7th Century 'foeger' meaning 'fair' or 'lovely', plus 'mann', a man, and was originally given either as a descriptive nickname to a particulary handsome man or as an occupational name to the servant of one called Fair. The suffix 'man' when attached to a nickname had augmentative force, and when conjoined with the master's personal name meant 'servant of'. The surname is first recorded at the beginning of the 13th Century, (see below), whilst other examples include Reginald Fareman or Feierman in the 'Pipe Rolls of Norfolk', dated 1208 and a Robert Farman in the 1222 'Pipe Rolls of Somerset'. The latter was also known as Robert le Bel (from the Olde French 'bel' meaning beautiful). In the 'modern' idiom the name is spelt Farman, Fairman, Fayerman, Fierman and Fireman. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Nicholas Fariman, which was dated 1201 in the Subsidy Rolls of Suffolk, 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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