This interesting and unusual name is of medieval English origin and is a dialectal variant of the locational name Dewsbury, from a place so called in the West Riding of Yorkshire. The earliest recording of this placename is in the Domesday Book of 1086 as 'Deusberia', and is recorded as 'Dewesbiri' in the Feet of Fines of 1226, and derives either from the personal name 'Dewi' or 'David' with 'burg', a town, or the first element may be 'deaw', dew or water and may originally have been a stream name. During the Middle Ages, when it became more common for people to migrate from their villages, they would often adopt the placename as a means of identification, thus resulting in a wide dispersal of the name. Recorded in St. Mary's, Lambeth, London, is the christening of Frederick Thomas Josebury, on March 18th 1821. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Tomas de Dewesberi, which was dated 1204, Pipe Rolls of Yorkshire, during the reign of King John, known as 'Lackland', 1199-1216. 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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