This unusual name appears to be personal, although its origins are so deeply rooted in antiquity as to have nearly disappeared from record. One possible source tells us that the name hails from the West Country, where it flourished, translating as a descriptive term meaning "ironspear". However, it is more likely that Isgar derives from the Old French personal name, "Ishard", a developed form of the Old German elements, "is", ice, and "hard", hardy, brave, strong. "Ishard" may also have been used as a nickname for someone who was known to be cool-headed, and also strong and brave in battle. A sizeable group of early European surnames were gradually created from the habitual use of nicknames. The name is believed to have been introduced into England by followers of William the Conquer after the Norman Invasion of 1066. It would have been a favourite name given to male children. Brent, in Somerset saw the marriage of three Isgars: John Isgar and Mary Greene on January 1st 1561; Arcurlus Isgar and Joanne Verby on November 5th 1587; and Andry Isgar to John Coomer on September 1st 1595. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of John Isgare, which was dated circa 1350, in "Kirby's Quest for Somerset", during the reign of King Edward 111, known as "The Father of the Navy", 1327 - 1377. 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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