This name derives from the Old French or Medieval English "joie" meaning "joy" and was originally given as a nickname to a joyous or cheerful person. In some cases, it may derive from the popular female personal name Joie given to a child to express the parents joy at her birth. Manser filius (son of) Joie is recorded in the 1186 "Pipe Rolls of Lincolnshire" and Joia (with surname) in the 1195 "Fine Court Rolls of Essex". The first recording of the surname is, however, earlier, (see below). One, Elena Joye appears in the 1273 "Hundred Rolls of Huntingdonshire" and in 1472 Godfrey Joye, Alderman of Norwich, died. Anne Mont Joy married Edward Wilberfosse on August 21st 1586 at St. Mary le Bow, London. On February 16th 1623 William Joy was listed among the earliest bearers of the name to settle in Virginia. Francis Joy (1697 - 1790) was a notable printer and papermaker and was a founder of the "Belfast Newsletter" in 1737. The first recorded spelling of the family name is shown to be that of Lefwin Joie, which was dated 1166, in the "Pipe Rolls of Norfolk", during the reign of King Henry 11, known as "The Builder of Churches", 1154 - 1189. 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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