This interesting and unusual surname is of French origin, and is locational from a place called "de Herci", thought to have been in Normandy; the source of the name is unknown. It was probably introduced into England with William the Conqueror after the Norman Invasion of 1066. Locational surnames were developed when former inhabitants of a place moved to another area, usually to seek work, and were best identified by the name of their birthplace. The name development since 1273 (see below) includes the following: John Hercy (1597 - 1598, Middlesex). Clement Hearsey (1600, London) and Thomas Hersey (1765, London). The modern surname can be found as Hersee, Hersey, Hersy and Hearsey. Among the sample recordings in London are the marriage of Henry Hersee and Ann Jackson on September 30th 1768 at St. James, Westminster, and the christening of Charles, son of Henry and Mary Ann Hersee, on August 24th 1836 at St. Giles, Camberwell. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Richard de Hercy, which was dated 1273, in the Hundred Rolls for Norfolk, 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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