Recorded in several spellings as shown below, this is a surname of Olde English and Welsh pre 7th century origins. Deriving from the word 'gwn' meaning light or fair, it was used as a name of endearment for a child with fair hair or a noticeably pale complexion. The name was also used as a byname or distinguishing epithet, to identify two bearers of the same name, such as John Wyn ap Hugh Gwyn or John, the fair, son of Hugh the fair. As Gueinn, Guinne or Gwynne the origin is apparently English, as Welsh writing is phonetic and the letter "e" would produce a misleading pronunciation. The modern surname can usually be found as Gueinn, Guin, and Guinn in England, as Gwen, Gwyn, Gwynn and Gwynne in South Wales, and as Wyn, Wynn, Wynne and Winn in North Wales. Among the sample recordings are the marriage of Edward Guin to Mary Colloun at St Margarets Westminster, on June 4th 1646, the christening of John Gwynne on May 3rd 1669 at Typn, in Breconshire, and that of Ann Gueinn at St Dunstans in the East, Stepney, on July 25th 1711. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Thomas Gwynne. This was dated 1481 - 1482, in the tax registers known as the "Feet of Fines" for the county of Surrey, during the reign of King Henry V1th, 1422 - 1485. Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as the 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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