This unusual surname is of late medieval English origins. It may well be from Harrow on the Hill, in the county of Middlesex, but this is not proven.The surname which is recorded in the spellings of Harraway, Harroway and possibly Harrowig (see below), has the meaning of "the road (weg) by the heathen temple". This is from the Old English pre 7th Century word "hearg", a heathen or pagan temple. The first known recording of the village name is in the year 767 a.d. when Harrow is recorded as "Gumeninga hergae", meaning the people (inga) called Gumen, who lived at Hergae.Whether there was a separate place called Harroway or Harraway is not known, but it is possible that the surname is "locational" like Townsend, meaning somebody who lived at the end of the town, or in this case a person who lived by the Harrow road. Amongst the earliest examples of the surname recording taken from authentic ships rolls and church registers is that of Marie Harrowig, who left London on April 16th 1635, on the ship "Expectacion" bound for the colony of New Providence in the Americas. As the clerk seems to have had difficulty spelling the ship's name, it is possible that he mistook a Harroway for a Harrowig. Another example is that of Mary Harraway, who married Richard White, at St James church, Dukes Place, London, on April 29th 1688. The first recorded spelling of the family name is possibly that of Richard Harroway, which was dated 1621, in the register of St Brides, Fleet Street, London. This was during the reign of King James Ist of England and V1 of Scotland, 1603 - 1625.
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