This name derives from the Medieval English "felagh" or "felaw" itself coming from the late Olde English "feolaga" meaning a partner or shareholder. The ultimate origin of the name is the Olde Norse "felagi", a partner or companion. The surname is first recorded in the 12th Century, (see below). One, Walter Felagh appears in the 1256 "Assize Court Rolls of Northumberland" and a Robert le Felagh in the 1327 Subsidy Rolls of Sussex. The patronymic forms of the name are Fellows and Fellowes. The final "s" added to the name is a reduced form of "son of (Fellow)". An interesting namebearer was Sir Charles Fellows (1799 - 1860), a traveller and archaeologist who discovered no less than thirteen ancient cities in Lycia after 1839. In 1841, he published "An Account of Discoveries in Lycia" and was also known as a Lycian numismatologist. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Felawe. which was dated circa 1150 in the "Catalogue of the Dean and Chapter of Lichfield", Staffordshire. during the reign of King Stephen, known as the Count of Blois, 1135 - 1154. 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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