This interesting English surname has two possible origins. The first is residential from living in an enclosure in a wood called a 'haga'. This is a word which seems to have been 'borrowed' from the Vikings, as it is first recorded in the North East of England from the 8th century onwards. The second possible origin is from a female personal name introduced by the Normans - "Haueis". This name derives from the Germanic "Haduwidis" composed of the elements "Hadu", meaning strife or contention and "widi", broad or strong. As a personal name this is first recorded as "Hawis", in the Curia Rolls of Suffolk, 1208. The 'modern' surname is recorded in the spellings of Haw, Haws, and Hawes or Hawyes. The latter two forms maybe patronymic and a short forms of Haw(e) + son but are more likely to be locational from the village of Hawes in North Yorkshire. Early examples of recordings include Peter in la Hawe, of Cambridge, in 1279 and Thomas Haw of Wakefield, Yorkshire in the city rolls of the year 1307. Amongst the earliest settlers in the new American colonies was Reginoll Hawe, who embarked from London, England, on January 15th 1634 for Virginia. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard Haga, which was dated 1179, in the Pipe Rolls of the city of Lincoln, during the reign of King Edward 1, known as 'The Hammer of the Scots', 1272 - 1307. 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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